Adi Mudra

Definition - What does Adi Mudra mean?

Adi mudra is a symbolic, ritualistic gesture of the hands often used in a spiritual yoga practice to calm and quiet the mind and nervous system. It can also help prepare the practitioner for pranayama breathing exercises.

In this mudra, the thumb is pressed on the inside of the palm and the fingers are closed around it, making a gentle fist.

The name for this mudra comes from the Sanskrit roots adi, meaning "first" or "primal," and mudra, meaning "gesture," "mark" or "seal."

Yogapedia explains Adi Mudra

Adi mudra is considered the first mudra because it is the first position an infant can make with the hands. It is often used while practicing meditation, and is thought to aid in pranayama because it increases breathing and lung capacity, thus increasing oxygen flow throughout the body.

The adi mudra is also thought to stimulate the brain, which is closely related to the crown (sahasrara) chakra that governs an individual's sense of peace, higher awareness and oneness with the universe.

It is recommended to practice adi mudra in a quiet setting while meditating and focusing on the breath, with the palms facing down on the thighs in a seated pose, such as padmasana (lotus pose). Because this mudra calms and soothes the nervous system, it can be beneficial to incorporate into the end of an asana practice.

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