Brahma (divine) + mudra (gesture)
Ayurvedic Element – Fire
Brahma mudra is one of the most important hand or hasta mudras. Like all mudras, it is designed to help the student control their energy and connect deeper with their inner being.
Brahma mudra has a special focus on the divine. Even the name comes from the Hinduistic god of Creation and literally translates to divine or sacred. For this reason, the mudra is also known as the ”The gesture of god of creation” or “the gesture of all-pervading consciousness”.
When practiced along with meditation, it is believed this mudra may help to combat the ego and negative thinking and bring the practitioner to a higher level of clarity.
With continuous practice, it may help one to advance in their spiritual path and connect with the supreme spirit.
The mudra is, unsurprisingly, mentioned in a variety of old yogic texts, including the Rig-Veda, where it is recommended for clarifying the senses.
The mudra is practiced with hands close to the navel, or the Solar Plexus, and the consciousness of the abdomen may also encourage one to breathe more deeply.
For this reason, it is also called poorna mudra, poorna meaning full, as it leads one to a full breath.
Some also connect the mudra to the Brahmacharya principle of yoga, which refers to the control of one’s energy and sexual purity.
Ayurvedic Element – Fire
Since all fingers are active in this mudra, and each finger represents one of the five elements, we can use it for balancing all elements within our bodies.
However, since the thumb – which represents fire – is covered by all other fingers, it is also seen as a powerful gesture for suppressing fire or Agni in the body.
For this reason, the mudra may help with all mental and physical conditions which are a result of an overactive fire. These include restlessness, anxiety, stress, and inflammation.
Balancing the fire element will soothe digestion, and also bring one to a calmer state of mind.
Chakras – Solar Plexus, Throat, Third Eye Chakra
On a physical level, the mudra seems to be most connected to the Solar Plexus, as the hands are kept close to this center.
This is also related to its balancing of the agni, or digestive fire, which also resides in this area. Balancing the Solar Plexus is crucial if you want to overcome the ego, and gain a true sense of inner power and confidence.
On a deeper level, though, this mudra also encourages the raising of the energy towards the higher chakras – the Throat and Third Eye.
In this manner, it helps us to overcome material things, and work on developing our insight, intuition, and purpose, while also allowing us to express ourselves honestly.
Meridians – The Governor Vessel
This mudra is connected to the Governor Vessel meridian, which connects the lower abdomen with the head. It is thought to be the same thing as the Sushumna Nadi from Ayurveda.
This energy channel is responsible for the connection of the Root Chakra with the Crown, and is thought to be the primary channel for the Shakti energy.
Working on raising the energy through this channel is believed to lead to Kundalini awakening, or transforming this base energy into higher spiritual energy.
Brahma Mudra Benefits
- Releases negative emotions, energy, and toxins from the body and mind.
- Improves focus and clarity.
- When practiced alongside pranayama, it encourages deeper breathing.
- Pressing the hands to the abdomen also massages the internal organs and may encourage digestion.
- Calms the nervous system, which also balances and calms the mind.
Practice with caution or refrain from the mudra with any operation, chronic pain, or injury in the area of the fingers or wrists.
How-To Perform Brahma Mudra
1. Begin in a comfortable position. Your spine should be erect, but keep your shoulders relaxed.
2. Place the tips of the thumbs of both hands on the base of the little fingers.
3. Close the fists of your hands, wrapping the thumbs with all fingers.
4. Press the knuckles of the left hand into the knuckles of the right hand.
5. Keep that arrangement in your hands and bring them close to the abdomen.
6. Press the knuckles into your navel as you exhale to promote deeper exhalation, and relax the abdomen with your inhale to allow it to fully expand.
7. Hold the mudra for the whole duration of your pranayama or meditation practice.
Brahma mudra is also a name of a head (manas) mudra. Advanced practitioners practice these two mudras at the same time. Keeping your hands in the Brahma hasta mudra, you will begin to rotate your head in all four directions, which imitates the Lord Brahma who is thought to have four heads. Practicing this head mudra may help reduce stiffness in the neck and shoulders.
When to use Brahma mudra
- Practice the mudra in your favorite seated meditation posture, such as Easy Pose, Lotus Pose, or Hero Pose.
- The mudra helps one to bring their energy towards the higher energy centers, calm the mind, and increase focus. All of these help one reach a deeper state of meditation, making this mudra a good choice to accompany any meditation practice.
- When practiced with the head mudra of the same name (which involves moving the head in all four directions) Brahma mudra is also paired with four seed mantras. These mantras are performed one in each direction on an exhalation and are aaa, uuu, eee, and mmm. Combined, they create one vibration of OM, which is thought to be the sound of the universe.
- Even if you don’t practice the head mudra, you can still chant Om, both internally and externally, if you’d like to deepen your spiritual practice.
- Brahma mudra is also referred to as Poorna mudra. Poorna translates to full and refers to encouraging complete exhalation. This is done by pressing the navel center during the exhalation. A proper exhalation also aids with deeper inhalations. This type of practice may help prepare you for any Pranayama exercise.
Where & When
- Practice in a silent place where you will not be disturbed in order to truly feel the benefits of Brahma mudra.
- Traditionally it is recommended to practice any mudra of your choice for at least 35 minutes daily which can be done in one or several sessions, for at least two months.
- Unlike many other gestures, this mudra doesn’t have to be practiced on an empty stomach.
For more in-depth asana resources, check out our free Mudra Library. Here you’ll find complete guides to each and every yoga mudra to deepen your yoga knowledge.
Each mudra page features high-quality photos and illustrations, insights into the meridian, chakra, and ayurvedic element systems, as well as tips on how, why, and when to practice each mudra.