Patience; a word I find easier to say than to actually embody. As a result, finding small ways to foster patience is a daily luxury for me.
Often when looking for opportunities to boost inner feelings, I turn to mudras. Mudras are hand gestures that allow you to elicit a deep inner wave of power into your practice while simultaneously stretching stiff fingers and bringing increased sensitivity back to the hands. Yet, these same hand gestures are a powerful non-verbal way for any one of us to connect with our practice.
Having children, I find there are particular points in my day when patience must be practiced to save myself from spiraling into a complete tantrum of my own; and, during these moments I use a mudra called “Shuni Mudra”. In Sanskirt, shuni means Saturn; in yoga, the middle finger represents Saturn which is associated with patience. Therefore, the idea behind this mudra is to generate patience, whether with yourself during practice or during your day with others.
To practice this mudra, press the tip of your thumb (representing the ego) and the tip of your middle finger
together, forming a circle; remaining fingers can extend out or open to the sky. You can begin your practice with this mudra (come to a seated position, with the back of your hands gently resting on your knees, thumb and middle fingers touch) and then continue to use it throughout your pose sequence when you require additional focus. Then again, why stop there? Maybe a stressful situation has come up in which you need a minute to possibly gain a new perspective through practicing this mudra.
Shuni Mudra does not pick up the toys my children have left all over the house, it does not put away the dishes my husband leaves in the sink, and it certainly doesn’t keep my neighbor’s dogs from barking at all hours of the night; but it does help me take a moment to realize the kids were trying to get to bed on time, that my husband was late for a meeting, and that the dogs are beloved pets and an important part of my neighbor’s family.
“…patience protects us from being discouraged.” ~ Dalai Lama
~The divine in me salutes the divine in you, Namaste~