Garuda (eagle) + mudra (gesture)
Ayurvedic Element – Air
The name of this particular mudra was not chosen by accident. The eagle is revered as the king of all birds in many cultures. It governs the sky and brings an eternal sense of freedom.
Even though it is free, his energy still carries discipline and loyalty. It holds unexplainable psychic awareness. All these qualities can be attained when incorporating Garuda mudra into your practice.
There is a need to give specific notice of the hand gesture, which symbolically mimics the wide
span of the eagle’s wings. The practice of Garuda mudra can be an invitation to cultivate this free yet resilient and open energy.
These energies are especially required when we are facing situations where we need to trust and tap into the unknown. It can be rather tricky to have faith in the path, which currently has no bright markings.
However, we need to keep the openness; we need to learn how to let go of something that is no longer in line with our soul’s growth. We need to allow the transformation to enter.
This mudra supports and soothes all the uncertain feelings of the one who is ready to let go and embark on this endless renewal.
As with most things in life, commitment is required to effect the desired changes. Before placing your hands into the gesture of Garuda, you may want to ask yourself, “In which areas do I lack dedication and commitment?”
This mudra is known to bring lasting power and the will to continue our commitments.
Ayurvedic Element – Air
Garuda works with the air element within the body. When we continue to include this mudra in our daily practice, we are balancing our Vata energy. Whenever we need to strengthen our spiritual, mental, or physical body, we can lean on this mudra to do just that.
When we are feeling uninspired, unmotivated, or when our focus is simply scattered, these are the first indicators of unbalanced air energy. We need to remind ourselves that air requires space and enough openness.
By practicing this mudra, we allow more air to enter our energy body. All the stagnation can be lifted, and we can begin to find our center again.
Major body organs, like the lungs, kidneys, stomach, and heart, can all benefit from Garuda
Mundra. It is also known to remove stagnant body fluids and regulate the natural blood circulation of our body.
Chakras – Heart Chakra
As mentioned before, this mudra has a lot of connections with different parts of our body. Yet it has the capacity to touch our heart chakra the most.
The heart chakra (Anahata), in Sanskrit, means unstuck, unbeaten. The air element here allows us to accept and come closer to a deeper, more spiritual understanding of love.
We also are able to bring out a more compassionate side of ourselves; we learn how to live our lives with our hearts wide open instead of holding our feelings and emotions in.
Meridians – Lung, Large Intestine
The Garuda Mudra is associated with a couple of different meridians. first, with the lungs. If the
energy flow through this meridian is smooth, we avoid any respiratory ailments, we invigorate our memory, and we are able to stand strong and fight seasonal colds way easier.
It also relates to the Large Intestine Meridian. If the energy flow here is balanced, we are able to
recognize and understand our emotions much more easily.
Garuda Mudra Benefits
- It helps cultivate perseverance.
- Allows you to move through changes and through “letting go” processes much easier.
- It has the capacity to remove any stagnant body fluids.
- Helps to tackle respiratory-related issues.
- It is known to alleviate menstrual pain and muscle spasms.
- May help those who struggle with higher anxiety levels.
- This mudra also stimulates the lymphatic system.
For people who experience high blood pressure, it is advisable to practice Garuda Mudra in
How To Perform Garuda Mudra
1. Come into a comfortable seated position (padmasana, siddhasana).
2. Make sure you are in a peaceful setting with no external interference. You should feel safe and relaxed.
3. Position your hands so that the palms are facing up.
4. Now cross your right hand over your left, clasping your thumbs together.
5. This gesture should create a butterfly-like shape, so it is always easy to check yourself if you are doing it correctly.
6. Bring your gaze inward. You may also want to close your eyes while allowing both hands to rest against your chest.
7. You can reverse the hands and continue to bring your attention inward with each inhalation and exhalation.
You may wish to experiment with practicing this mudra: standing in a mountain pose (tadasana) or sitting comfortably in a chair. Notice in which position it is easier for you to attain a deeper sense of stillness and relaxation.
When to use Garuda Mudra
Any meditation pose (lotus, easy pose) is suitable for mudra incorporation.
If in your meditation you are focusing on your heart chakra, gently place both of your hands against your chest to send the energy flow into your Anahata space. Soft cultivation of compassion and kindness can be attained through this.
You can also work with the totem of the bird. Placing your hand gestures in Garuda Mudra, slowly imagine for a moment that you are a bird. You are this great eagle that is flying high in the sky.
You are looking down with a birds-eye perspective, seeing your life from above. You are witnessing and allowing the divine unfolding of it all. The highs, the lows, and then the highs again. Freeness in the moment, allowing this energy to wash over you.
- Om agnaye namaha is the mantra that is being used to evoke the transformative fire. Pair this mantra with Garuda Mudra while in lotus or mountain pose to increase your adaptability to change.
- You can also chant the mantra YAM, which is mostly associated with the heart chakra. It is,
however, the seed sound for the element air. Here, as you hold the mudra and cultivate the sound of yam, you will be bringing a sense of more space and lightness to our hearts. Repeat this mantra twelve times.
Experiment with pairing Garuda Mudra with traditional Ujjayi breathing.
Hold mudra and gently focus on each inhalation and exhalation. This will allow you to infuse the mind with fresh prana and promote soothing energy flow.
Where and When:
It is advisable to practice Garuda Mudra three times per day for five minutes or to have one practice for 15 minutes.
The morning hours for this mudra practice are known to bring deeper calmness.
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.