Hasta mudras or hand gestures are an important part of the practice of yoga. Different hasta mudras yield various physical, mental, and spiritual benefits. This necessitates their inclusion in your daily yoga regime. One such important gesture is the Abhaya mudra or the gesture of fearlessness. Fear is common to all beings, including humans. Each person has his/her fears. It could be fear of dark or certain things, fear of people, fear of negative energy, and more. Whatever they may be, fear is detrimental to growth and is where Abhaya mudra comes in. It helps overcome your fears and fills you up with positive energy.
What is Abhaya Mudra?
The Abhaya mudra is believed to have become popular with Lord Buddha after he attained enlightenment. The gesture finds a place in many Buddhist artworks and indicates ‘stop’. This implies stopping phobias and fears which can cloud the mind and become an obstacle in your life. By putting an end to your fear and mustering courage, you can open up new dimensions of your life. The mudra is also commonly practiced in other religions like Jainism, Sikhism, and Hinduism to shower blessings on a person.
Moreover, the gesture shows that the hands carry no weapons. This indicates friendly behavior towards others and is often used as an assurance. It also promulgates a sense of self-consciousness and peace and harmony.
Abhaya Mudra Meaning
The mudra derives its name from the Sanskrit word ‘Abhaya’ which means fearless. Hence, Abhaya mudra is also known as fearless mudra. The mudra implies that you should not be afraid. It also implies detachment from fear.
How to do Abhaya Mudra?
Performing Abhaya Mudra is very easy. Unlike other mudras, there is no fixed time for the mudra for fearlessness. You can practice it anytime you want and anywhere you want. What’s more, it isn’t essential to be seated while performing the mudra which makes it convenient for people with joint pain, physical injury, and disability, or for people who find themselves busy during the early morning hours. To perform the fearless mudra, follow the steps given below:
- To begin, sit in a comfortable pose. This could be any meditation pose. For example, Lotus pose (Padmasana), Easy pose (Sukhasana), Auspicious pose (Swastikasana), Diamond pose (Vajrasana), etc. If you do not want to sit, you can simply stand still to perform the mudra of fearlessness. You can stand in the Mountain pose (Tadasana) for this mudra.
- Once you are seated, place your hands on your knees. The palms of your hand should be open and point upwards.
- Next, close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Make yourself aware of each breath. Make sure that your breathing is normal.
- Next, gradually move your right hand up so that it is at the same level as your shoulder.
- Your fingers must be straight and your palm open.
- Now relax your mind and remove all unnecessary thoughts. You could focus on OM for better results.
- Do not try to control your breathing at this stage.
- Be in this posture for at least 10-12 minutes and do three repetitions. For best results, you must perform the mudra for fearlessness for about 35 minutes per day at a stretch.
- When done, gradually open your eyes and bring your hand down and release the fearless mudra.
Abhaya Mudra Benefits
The Abhayamudra is a simple yet effective hasta mudra. It is a mudra that showers blessings. Moreover, it must be a part of your daily yoga regime because of its numerous benefits. This includes:
- Helps conquer fear
One of the important Abhaya mudra benefits is that it helps keep fear at bay. Fear may be a natural instinct but control of fear is important for success in life. So, if you feel that your fear is holding you back in life, you must practice the mudra of fearlessness. It feels you with courage and helps overcome your fear.
- Soothes the mind
This simple hand gesture is also useful in calming the mind and the body. The mudra helps the mind gain control of emotions such as irritability, anger, anxiety, etc. arising out of fear. As the mind gains control of these negative emotions and eradicates them, it gradually calms down. A calm mind, in turn, leads to a relaxed body.
- Enhances spiritual energy
Abhayamudra doesn’t only have health benefits; it also has spiritual benefits. Regular practice of the mudra of fearlessness helps awaken the chakras and allows the free flow of spiritual energy within the body. This creates a sense of spiritual security.
Abhaya mudra is an important gesture in yoga because it helps the practitioner fight the fear. However, to get good results from the mudra, the following precautions must be taken:
- The mudra for fearlessness must be practiced with your right hand. Never do otherwise.
- Do not be in haste to see results. Most people see significant changes after a month of practice.
- The fingers of your hand must be relaxed. Do not create pressure as this indicates restlessness of mind.
- One must feel comfortable, mentally and physically, while performing the mudra to get the best Abhaya mudra benefits.
- Abhayamudra can be performed in 74 different poses. It is vital that you choose a pose that suits you the best.
The mudra for fearlessness indicates openness of mind, good intentions, and peace. As such, people practicing the mudra shouldn’t see any side-effects. However, if you feel uncomfortable, stop doing it immediately.
The Abhaya mudra has been an integral part of yoga for ages. It is that one mudra that you should never give a miss. It can be performed alone or with other yoga mudras like Gyan mudra or combined with meditation. This will give the mind and body a better chance to fight the fear that lurks within you and expel the same. You can put a ‘stop’ to fears that grip you and at the same time bring in peace, silence, and security.