Gyana Shakti

Definition - What does Gyana Shakti mean?

In Indian and yogic philosophy, gyana shakti is one of the three parts of creative cosmic power called shakti. Gyana shakti is the power to know. The other two parts are iccha shakti (willpower) and kriya shakti (the power to act). It is the combination of these shaktis that controls the universe. For an objective to be completed, all three shaktis must be in harmony. For example, to build a house, one must have the desire to do so (iccha), the knowledge to build it (gyana) and the physical ability (kriya).

Gyana shakti is also called jnana shakti. Jnana is the Sanskrit word for “wisdom” or “spiritual knowledge.”

Yogapedia explains Gyana Shakti

Gyana shakti may be referred to as the power of the mind and has two main parts. Attributes of the mind includes thinking, reasoning, analyzing, recalling memories and understanding. Gyana shakti powers the mind to complete these tasks. Transcendental mind attributes include psychic ability, clairvoyance and the ability to understand that which transcends time and space. Gyana shakti also powers this aspect of the mind, which is an attribute that fully aware yogis may possess.

Methods for activating gyana shakti include yoga asanas, pranayama, mudras and meditation. One mudra that is effective for gyana shakti is jnana mudra, also known as the psychic gesture of knowledge. As the yogi sits in meditation, he/she places the hands on the knees with the palms facing up. The thumb and index fingers of each hand touch lightly, allowing energy to circulate throughout the body.

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