I've had a similar experience with my hands forming mudras while meditating, and feeling the energy shift and begin to move through and around my body. These experiences only seem to happen when I am in a deep state of meditation. I've only been able to do one mudra deliberately and have the same movement of energy. (Dhyani mudra, where the right hand rests on the other, with the thumbs touching.) The others seem to come naturally when I'm ready.
As far as I can tell, mudras are special positions of the hands that allow the chakras in the hands to open in a specific way. When the chakras in the hands open, the energy flows through them and opens different dimensions.
Yes, Rama used mudras frequently when I sat with him in meditation. I've seen various colored lights flow from his hands, and the light seemed to be directed by the position his hands assumed.
Your higher self always knows what it needs to do. We've learned that meditation opens the channel of communication so we can act in accordance with that higher nature. So, I would recommend that you continue to meditate deeply rather than try to analyze your experiences. Allow yourself to form the mudras as they come naturally without being distracted by them.
It may help to satisfy your curiosity to read up on the various Buddhas and the mudras they are shown depicting. A few of the more common mudras are illustrated in The Shambhala Dictionary of Buddhism and Zen.
A secular description of mudrasi is that they are hand gestures used by the Tantrikas to communicate knowledge to their adepts or followers. The mudra is a nonverbal means of communication and consists of repetitive gestures and finger positions. These can be connected with Tantric ritual and are intended to provoke a response in the mind of the observer. They are also used in dancing as part of a complex vocabulary of the expression of feeling and narrative ...
This is one way of approaching the Mudras. These are somewhat ritualized and have certain meanings. Yet, your experience is not unlike my Teachers. In Samadhi he will often do mudras unconsciously. Later, he has said that he was unaware of having done them and were a spontaneous expression. Perhaps a way of passing "The Torch"?
I believe that letting the Universe express it's self through spontaneous expressions like the mudras is a fine thing. Just live in the Moment of it. See what the experience brings. But, don't try to force it to happen. I recently read a comment that may be appropriate : "Meditation is about experiences that are often beyond the minds knowing. The physical experiences that you have during the meditation are as transient as anything else". Just enjoy the experience, just be.
As you continue in your practice and become even more aware of "Energy"- how it directs life, makes up life, how it shifts, etc.- you may develop the ability to control it. Who knows, maybe become a Siddha Master. But, in my experience all of those abilities come from the second attention, unthinkingly. Your higher awareness seems to direct the right thing at the right moment. (Hint: your Ego can't get in the way). And don't get distracted by all of the phenomena that you will experience. Enlightenment is still the goal and the basics are Meditation, Selflessness or Selfless giving and a sense of Humility. Fun stuff heh?
Mudras are a means of changing fields of energy by moving the hands. Rama would often use mudras in his teaching; however he did not talk a lot about what he was doing and it was not something that I recall him specifically mentioning to us to try. Rama was sufficiently advanced in his own practice that he certainly did not need to use mudras in order to move himself or others into different states of awareness; I suspect when he did choose to use them it was as a teaching device. If you see the teacher doing something with his hands, it serves as a bit of a visual cue that something is going on with energy which otherwise you might completely miss.
In my own practice and in my teaching, mudras are not something which I use. In terms of how to position the hands, I usually recommend that students try something that feels right to them. I have tried a few hand positions, and what works for me is to sit with my hands on knees, palms facing up and cupped so that the tip of the index finger is touching the tip of the thumb.
Once you've found something which works, though, I recommend sitting perfectly still and focusing on the primary chakras (navel, heart, third eye), and not focusing on the hands. What we're trying to do in meditation is raise the Kundalini to various levels to "charge up the batteries" of your chakras, and doing things with the hands may produce an interesting experience but is a distraction from that process. As with all distractions in meditation, we try not to focus on them.
In answer to your many questions, "yes, no, no, yes." I remember what a delight it was to watch Rama gracefully and precisely move his hands as he performed the mudras. It was truly a sight to behold. Not only was it beautiful to watch, but the energy experience was out of this world, literally! (At least out of the realm of understanding based on the physical laws of this world.)
When an enlightened being performs the mudras he or she is doing very techy stuff. The lines of energy are being moved in a very precise way. While it is very graceful and beautiful, and most powerful, it is highly technical. I feel very comfortable leaving such an art form in the hands of the most evolved, most enlightened.
On rare occasions I have had experiences during meditation that are similar to yours. My hands have moved very much as if they knew what they needed to do, and have watched in fascination.
Uhhh, I would definitely recommend that you meditate, and be absorbed. I think you might want to treat the hand movements as distractions, and just sit, and be absorbed in the clear light.
Some day, a younger version of Yoda may come along and give you direct instruction in the art and technical knowledge of the mudras. Until then, have fun in stillness, be absorbed.
"When Mudras are a by-product of spiritual awakening. They are the result of energy moving through the body. As this happens, the physical body assumes postures that best align with that flow. The hands are also power centers and they are especially sensitive to this movement of energy.
There were times that Rama used mudras. These were very powerful experiences for me. But then, all of my experiences with Rama were powerful! I sometimes am aware that I am doing mudras. It is real tricky though. If you become aware of them and then focus on them as this is going on, you have fallen into an ego trap. Mudras are pure only if you are witnessing them and not becoming ego involved. This is very hard to do! You feel and maybe even see the light and lines of energy that are emanating from your hands and it is almost impossible to divorce yourself from acknowledging this experience and to continue stopping your thought.
I have had people attend my meditations and they looked like they were trying to play an invisible piano. Their meditations didn't go very deep because they were trying to move energy, give energy or even just showing off.
For those that are beginning, (meditating less than five years), I recommend that you not pay that much attention to these gestures and maybe place your hands in a meditative way and keep them there as you focus on the light and whatever technique you are using at the time. Mudras can become a huge distraction. They are wonderful and healing if you can be detached. However, I feel that it is most important to focus on the intensity of your meditation and save the mudras for later.
First allow me to explain the meaning of mudras. The Dalai Lama has written a series of three books dedicated to Tantric Buddhism. The books are entitled: "The Buddhism of Tibet," "Tantra in Tibet," and "Deity Yoga." The final book in the trilogy explains in detail, with the aid of many photographs, how one should perform these hand gestures known as mudras or energy seals.
"The seals represent the union of the illusory body with the clear light of reality. In essence, a yogi uses all of his physical movements, all verbal expressions, and all thoughts and realizations, as the seals. By performing the seals, the yogi establishes the capacity to manifest Buddhahood in numerous form bodies in order to help sentient beings." -- The Dalai Lama In his book the Dalai Lama describes 38 different seals that are used for various purposes. Here are some examples; the seal for dispelling obstructers; the seal of generating magnificence; the seal requesting departure; the seal of the protective armour; the seal of Sarasvati; and others.
When Rama used to perform the seals in front of his students, the seals would open channels of energy that would manifest different forms of power. One time, when we were out in the desert, Rama stood up in front of the group and started to perform different mudras. Suddenly, a purple bird made up of energy appeared in front him, and it started to move its wings, and then vanished in this air.
If you feel like moving your hands and performing the seals, this tendency probably comes from a remembrance of a past life. You might have done this type of yoga in the past, and your spirit wants to move in that direction again. I would recommend that you get some books on the subject and read about it.
No matter how little you meditate, or whether you are doing it right or wrong at the beginning, what matters is that you meditate. For every step you take towards enlightenment, enlightenment takes ten steps towards to you. After a while you will learn to concentrate and meditate better. Try using different techniques and see what works best for you. If you want a basic guide on chakra meditation, as Rama taught us, please visit my web site at: MeditationClub.com
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