Mahamudra Meditation – What Is It And What Are Its Benefits?

by Nilankeeta Roy Chowdhury

Mahamudra meditation symbolizes the realization of all other contemplative meditation practices. It is rooted in India and has been practiced to apprehend the inherent transparency, intelligibility and precision of the mind.

What Is Mahamudra Meditation?

Mahamudra’ (also called the ‘Great Hand Posture’) is a Sanskrit word, which means the ‘great symbol’ or the ‘great locks’ or the ‘great seal’. It is a simple and natural practice of ‘contemplation’, which is based on ‘insight’ and ‘tranquility’. All three energetic ‘seals’ or ‘Bandhas’ i.e. ‘Moola Bandha’, ‘Uddiyana Bandha’ and ‘Jalandhara Bandha’ are engaged in this meditation to open up the energy channels in our body by directing the ‘prana’ or ‘vital energy’ in the right direction. It is a part of the widely popular ‘Buddhist Meditation’.

[ Read: Steps To Practice Tummo Meditation ]

How To Practice Mahamudra Meditation?

Given here are the Mahamudra meditation instructions for you to check out and follow. You need to practice it regularly to benefit from it:

  1.  Start by sitting on the floor in the Staff Pose or Dandasana. You must feel comfortable while keeping your spinal cord straight and placing both of your hands on the floor at the sides of your hips.
  2.  Press your palms down against the floor. Bring your shoulders back and a little down. These will open up your chest and make the crown of your head go straight upwards.
  3.  Meanwhile, you should feel that your pair of the sitting bones (the tuberosity of the ischium) has got rooted to the floor. So, you need to spread out your legs frontwards and point your toes up and ensure they are firm.
  4.  Now, take a deep breath and pull your right foot towards your right thigh. When breathing the air out, bring the knee down. You should place the toe near the inner section of the thigh while completing a single breath cycle.
  5.  Take another deep breath and pull your arms up along with it. Your aim will be to bring them right above your head, while aligning each of your fingers in a straight line. After that, breathe out and engage your ‘Moola Bandha’ during this time.
  6.  While exhaling at this stage, you have to roll to the front section of your sitting bones. Make sure that your spinal cord and the entire back is straight throughout the time. Now, bring down your arms and latch them onto the plane of your foot while involving the Jalandhara Bandhas (in the elevation of your head) and Uddiyana Bandha (in your tummy) in the movement.
  7.  The whole posture will create a ‘space’ in your body and mind. You need to get conscious about it, which will shift your focus from the breathing completely.
  8.  Once you get back to the previous state, you will feel like breathing once again. Let your foot and the bandhas go off and take a deep breath. Begin to straighten your arms. By the time you finish breathing the air out, both of your arms should have come down to your sides.
  9.  Then, close your eyes without moving your body. Take a deep breath and spread out the right leg.

10. Repeat all the above steps for the other side of your body and finish the meditation.

[ Read: Benefits Of Soham Meditation ]

Benefits Of Mahamudra Meditation:

The benefits of Mahamurda meditation can be divided into two categories. The first one includes the physical benefits and the second one revolves around internal well being. Let us take a look at why you should practice this meditation:

1. Physical Benefits Of Mahamudra Meditation:

  • Makes various groups of muscles (shoulder muscles, abdominal muscles, upper back muscles, lower back muscles, etc.) in our body stronger.
  • Increases strength in the lower section (including hips, thighs, legs, etc.) of our body.
  • Gives our immune system a significant boost.
  • Improves the functionality of the nervous system.
  • Energizes the whole body to a great extent.
  • Helps in healing several diseases (due to its therapeutic applications).

2. Internal Benefits Of Mahamudra Meditation:

  • Enhances the concentration power and increases self-confidence.
  • Refreshes the mind by clearing up all afflicting thoughts.
  • Helps to develop our best qualities.
  • Calms down the mind and makes it stable.
  • Teaches us to be loving and compassionate.
  • Prevents us from being self-centred.

[ Read: Benefits Of Sahaj Samadhi Meditation ]

Word Of Caution:

However, before you take the plunge of practicing Mahamudra meditation, here are a few facts that should be taken into account for precautionary measure:

  • Do not go for it if you are pregnant or have any of these medical conditions: hypertension, eye disorders, glaucoma, abdominal inflammation, chronic back inflammation, etc.
  • Make sure you focus on engaging the ‘three bandhas’ prior to beginning the meditation.
  • Seek help of a professional instructor in case you are a newbie to meditation.

Like any other form of meditation, perseverance is the key to Mahamudra meditation. Be diligent and soon you’ll see a change come over you. Try it!

Are you interested in Mahamudra meditation? Have you ever given it a try? Do not forget to let us know by commenting below.

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