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Mudras and their healing power

- By Shilpa Jasani

An interview with Sujit Sukumaran, HR professional, TEDx Speaker, Graphology (handwriting analysis) and mudra therapy coach.

A simple, chemical-free and non-intrusive complementary method of healing is the relatively unknown mudra therapy (an ancient Indian therapeutic discipline).  In layman’s terms – mudra is a hand position, created by ancient yogis to balance the flow of energy in the body and mind.  Mudras are practiced to restore physical health, calm the mind and optimize the flow of energy. The seemingly simple exercises have the potential to promote mental and physical wellbeing, says Sujit Sukumaran, graphologist and mudra-therapy coach, based in the UAE.  Challenged with CP Diplegia as a child, Sujit who is fluent in 4 languages says, ‘my condition took me from disability to capability to opportunity’.

 “A lot of people with half-baked knowledge relegate mudra therapy as a ‘poor cousin’ or sub-branch of yoga,” explains Sujit.  “However, though mudras have their origin in yoga, it is entrenched in other disciplines as well. While yoga works if the aspirant is serious, mudra acts if the aspirant is even more serious, since they require a certain stillness of the mind too. It is slow but subtle and powerful.  Applications wise, mudras work on the fundamental philosophy that the five elements – fire, earth, space, water and air are there in the five fingers of your hand. If the imbalances in our bodies can be balanced, we will have long and healthy lives.  Each part of our hand corresponds with a particular area of our brain and body. Mudras stimulate our glands, nerves, and organs.”

Describing his journey as a disabled child, Sujit says: “Being born as a person with cerebral palsy, I was always visiting yoga studios as part of my treatment. In my early years, I met late Dr. Suman Chiplunkar, one the doyens of mudra therapy (her book on mudra science has been published 52 times in 3 languages and has broken records). After her initial guidance, I started my research by applying the mudras on people with cerebral palsy, after taking permission from their doctors. On receiving encouraging results with bedridden patients in our pilot programs, I was motivated to expand this healing therapy to people suffering from other ailments as well.”  

Mudras have been used in the East for thousands of years and were practiced by spiritual leaders. Nowadays, mudras are used in yoga and meditation practices.

Sujit has been conducting 2-day workshops for beginners and week long courses for advanced students. “To graduate to the advanced course, the participant should have logged in 8-9 months of consistent practice before becoming eligible for the advanced course. As of today, we have trained over 250 people, across different nationalities, age groups and professions. The advanced course is one-week long, over four months. So, 4 weeks in total.  On a day to day basis, a person needs to invest 15-30 minutes, at least 3 times a week for improved health and as a preventive measure.”

According to Sujit, mudra therapy has benefitted people with diverse health issues – from insomnia, depression, anxiety and panic attacks, spastic people and those having cerebral palsy, arthritis, students having examination fear, for improved memory, heart health among others.   

There are hundreds of mudras, some for general healing, some are restorative while others are preventive.  There are more than 2,500 nerve receptors per square centimeter in each one of our hands. By practicing these simple mudras, we can stimulate holistic healing in our bodies.

Below are six examples of mudras and their health benefits:

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