162 – Namaste

In all forms of Hindu worship, one form is used and that is joining our hands in Namaste. The palms of the hands are simply placed together in front of the chest. We are bowing to god. This act shows respect to the gods, and it also expresses our humility.

We fold our hands in front of our elders, our parents, our guru, or a person, who has a high position. Joining both hands together as in Namaste, the fingers are touching each other and tips of our fingers are linked to pressure points in the eyes, ears and mind. By pressing them together it is said to activate these points and enables us to remember that person for a long time. Namaste is derived from Sanskrit and is composed from two words, “Namah” and “te” (a shortened version of “tubhyam”).

Namah means bow, obeisance, reverential salutation, or adoration and te means you. Namaste is the pranam mudra, it is also called the namaskara mudra, gesture of greeting, and prarthana mudra. Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati gives a detailed explanation of the pranam mudra. It induces harmony in the mind. In surya namaskara, it is the first and last mudra to offer homage to the sun, the source of all life.

The concept of yin

The pranam mudra harmonizes the left and right hemisphere of the brain and establishes a sense of harmony and concentration. It quietens the thoughts and creates clarity of mind. According to acupuncture, three important yin meridians of the lung, pericardium and heart run along each palm. By joining the palms together, the exchange of energy is enhanced. The concept of yin corresponds to that of Ida and this mudra enables us to take our mind inwards (introvert) and centre on a higher power. These yin meridians have connections with the region of the chest, and they supply prana to the heart (anahata chakra).

Centre ourselves with pranam mudra

Also, by joining the tips of the thumbs together, a direct connection between the lung meridians on both sides is established. The breath is unblocked in both nostrils and the Ida and Pingala can flow, therefore restoring harmony and equilibrium. Pranam mudra is a very powerful mudra and if we close our eyes and join our palms together for ten minutes daily, we can centre ourselves.

We can add a mantra also, like Soham or Om, and we can choose a symbol in the space between our brows. It can be a deity, a star, a bija mantra, a yantra or a flower. We have to stay with it. You will note the change.

Aim Hrim Klim


Photo by madison lavern on Unsplash

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