There we are, this week marks the end of the articles dealing with mudras with one hand! After this one, you will be able to enjoy a several-week-lasting break in order to practice and have an overview of all the mudras we made you discover over the previous articles.We will then dive into discovering mudras with two hands. Once you finish reading this last article, you will have full potential to master the art of one-handed Barata Natyam.
The first mudra from this last series is Hansapakshika, which generally stands for "Swan's wing".
In order to do it yourself, you should first start with the Mrigashirsha mudra and then bend your thumb along with the other fingers.
Hansapakshika is used to denote several ideas:
- The number six
- The construction of a bridge
- To lock, to cover
As for Sandamsha, this mudra means "the pincer". It can also be called "Chimta" referring to a traditional South Asian percussion instrument, the latter being a reminder of this original pincer form, or again "Pakkad", referring to an Indian cooking utensil which has the aspect of a pincer as well. Thus, these different ways of calling this mudra depend on the Indian area you find yourself in.
So that you can master this mudra, you must know that it involves closing and opening your fingers. Namely all the fingers get closer touching each other at the tip and then open up separating. All the meaning of the Sandamsha mudra is crystallized in this quick movement.
Sandamsha conveys the following meanings
- The belly
- To offer made to deities
- A great fear
- A great anxiety
- The number five
- To worship
The meaning of this mudra is known to be "the bud", as you can easily guess it thanks to its shape.
This is when all the five fingers are brought together and touch each other at the tip, that we get the Mukula mudra. Be careful to keep your fingers straight.
When doing the Mukula you are able to display:
- To eat
- The Banana flower
- The Lily flower
- Manmatha and its arrow (Hindi god of love)
- To hold the signet
- The flower or the bud
Tamrachuda generally evokes "the rooster" or more precisely, the "rooster's head". Indeed, to master this mudra you have to bent your index finger once you are in the Suchi mudra position. The way your hand looks at that moment certainly reminds you of the animal. There is also another way to manage this mudra: from the Mukula mudra, raise your index finger in order to shape it like a question mark.
The different meanings of Tamrachuda mudra are the following:
- The rooster
- The camel
- The calf
- The Heron
- The crow
- To write
- A pen that is used to engrave
Eventually, here is the trishula mudra, one of the most important. In Sanskrit "Tri" stands for "Three" while "Shula" is a spear. The Trishula is then a kind of spear with three sharp points rather than one. It turns out that it is one of the most popular symbols of Lord Shiva, who also answer to the name "TrishulaDhara" : « The one who holds the Trishula».
This is when the thumb and the little finger meet each other at the tip, while the index, the middle finger and the ring finger are held straight, that you obtain the Trishula mudra, which gives your hand the appearance of the Trishula spear.
Here are the other interpretations of this specific gesture:
- The holy trinity : Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva
- The number three
- The three worlds
- Bilva leaves: the holy leaves which are used to worship Lord Shiva
There we finally are: you now know all the secrets of the mudras with one hand used in BarataNatyam. The only step left is for you to practice and get familiar with each figure in order to be ready to discover and start learning how to do the mudras with two hands soon!