Thursday, September 5, 2013

All About Mudras!

I found these on and thought they might be helpful in understanding images that we are seeing of the Buddha in both India and Asia. Enjoy!

If your in my class and you want extra credit here's a fun assignment you can do. Draw each mudra an dwrite what it really means.  Then try to explain how or why that mudra might have gotten that meaning.  You don't have to do historical research, but if you do please share with me! This is more of a memory device to help you remember.  We already talked about how the mudra for teaching has teh fingers making a circle, and lots of Buddhist teachings involve the wheel.  Now you try it!

The symbolic gestures of the hands of Buddha images, called mudras, are picture tools of identification of deeper meaning:
Gesture of Teaching
The Gesture of Teaching (Dharmacakra Mudra) with both hands in front of the breast, tips of the index finger and the thumps touching.
Gesture of Compassion
The Gift bestowing Gesture of Compassion (Varada Mudra) the right hand pendant with the palm turned outwards.
Gesture of Meditation
The Gesture of Meditation (Samadhi Mudra) with both hands resting on the lap, palms upwards.
Gesture of Fearlessness
The Gesture of Fearlessness (Abhaya Mudra) the right hand slightly elevated, the palm turned outwards, also called the Gesture of Renunciation.
Gesture of Debate
The Gesture of Debate explaining the Buddha’s teachings (Vitaka Mudra) with the hands raised and the tips of the forefingers and the thumbs touch each other.
Gesture Warding off Evil
The Gesture Warding off Evil (Tarjani Mudra) with forefinger and little finger outstretched.
Gesture of Prayer
The Gesture of Prayer (Namaskara Mudra) with the palms folded together.
Gesture Beyond Misery
The Gesture Beyond Misery (Buddha-Shramana Mudra) also called an ascetic’s Gesture of Renunciation.
Gesture of Warding off Evil
The Gesture of Warding off Evil (Bhutadamara Mudra) this is a protection gesture

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