Many who have come across and were interested in the history of religions (deeper than the traditional level) know that some rituals, traditions, symbols and holidays in religions overlap and are often similar. There are even radical opinions that, for example, Christianity and Islam came (or were created) from more ancient Judaism or even from Egyptian cults. In no case do I want to offend the feelings of believers. But such facts (and for some they are just coincidences) do exist.
I came across some interesting material on this topic: images of Buddhist mudras among saints on Orthodox icons. Do not think that I fell into mysticism or became imbued with one of the religious denominations. Just the facts. Although, I do not see anything wrong with the fact that someday there will be a completely scientific justification for these practices, incomprehensible symbolism. But this will be when science really begins to study unexplored phenomena, as lone scientists did in the 19th century. and the beginning of the 20th century, and not cut grants.
Mudra (Sanskrit "seal, sign") - in Hinduism and Buddhism - a symbolic, ritual arrangement of hands, ritual sign language.
Yoga mudras are commonly seen as a component of Hatha Yoga. They consist of a set of hand gestures performed during meditation.
Those. these are some symbols. With a certain arrangement of fingers, hands and arms, a certain secret meaning is obtained, which the depicted monk conveys. And in our case, a Christian saint. Images of Christian saints are taken from Byzantine paintings, icons and their images that have come down to us.
I will not describe the entire subtle meaning of mudras, what chakras they activate, where and how energies, prana, etc. go. Let it remain for those who practice like this. This can be treated in different ways. Let's not reject it, just omit it.
1. Prithvi Mudra
The Printvi (Earth) Mudra is performed by touching the tip of the ring finger with the tip of the thumb. In Buddhism, mudra is effective for strengthening and healing the body. Promotes a feeling of stability and self-confidence.
2. Prana Mudra
Prana Mudra is called the Wisdom of Life. In yogic practice, it can heal over a hundred different diseases and health conditions. Promotes stability, calmness and self-confidence.
Prana (Life Energy) Mudra is formed by touching the tips of the finger and little finger with the tip of the finger.
3. Apana Mudra (and its variation Karana Mudra)
Apana (descending vital energy) Mudra is formed by touching the tips of the ring finger and middle finger with the tip of the thumb. Mudra regulates the excretory systems of the body. It cleanses the body and also helps in digestion.
A variation of Apana Mudra is called Karana Mudra, in which the sliding finger and middle finger are folded, but their tips do not touch the tip of the thumb. Sometimes the thumb can hold the middle and ring fingers. Karana Mudra is said to dispel negativity and obstacles and ward off the evil eye.
Mudra is still popular with Catholics, where it is called Korna (phonetically very similar to Karana). Korna has the same function as Karana Mudra.
In some media, Korn is sometimes interpreted as a "satanic symbol".
4. Shuni Mudra or Akasha Mudra
Shuni (Saturn) Mudra or Akasha Mudra is performed by touching the tip of the middle finger with the tip of the finger. Mudra engenders awareness of our inner divine self and promotes life in the present moment. It also encourages compassion, understanding, and patience towards others.
5. Dhyana Mudra
The Dhyana mudra (Meditation) is performed by sitting in and placing your hands on your knees, one on top of the other, so that the fingers touch the tip. This mudra calms the mind and helps build the one-pointed focus required for meditation.
6. Surya Mudra (Agni Mudra)
Surya Mudra / Agni Mudra is performed by folding the ring finger and pressing the second phalanx with the base of the thumb.This mudra has a therapeutic effect on digestive disorders
7. Anjali Mudra
Anjali mudra is the Namaste gesture. It is formed by bringing the palms together in front of the chest, so that the thumbs are slightly pressed against the sternum. Mudra unites the left and right hemispheres of the brain. It relieves stress and relieves anxiety.
8. Abhaya Mudra
Abhaya Mudra is performed by raising the hand with the palm facing outward. This mudra is performed by deities and spiritual masters to allay fear and provide divine protection to devotees.
9. Varada Mudra
Varada mudra is performed by stretching out the hand with the palm facing outward, with the fingers pointing down. It is a beneficial gesture and symbolizes the act of bestowing blessings and mercy. Like the Abhaya mudra, this mudra is performed by deities and spiritual teachers, whose divine energies are directed outward through open palms.
10. Ardhapataka Mudra
In this mudra, the ring finger and little finger are bent while the rest are held upright. It is believed that doing mudra allows people to free themselves from the troubles in their lives.
Most of the Byzantine Orthodox icons were created from the 6th century AD. until the fall of Constantinople until its capture by the Ottomans in 1453. Therefore, the knowledge of these yoga mudras may have survived within the Orthodox Church until the 15th century AD. At present, however, most historians seem to be unaware that these hand gestures are yoga mudras and instead refer to them in general as signs of blessing.
A separate question is where this Buddhist knowledge and practice came from in Christianity. There are opinions that earlier Buddhism was well known in Europe, in Byzantium, in Egypt. And religion has taken something from Eastern practices. There is a mention of this here (use a translator).
My opinion: in the past there was more general knowledge, there was no separation of spiritual practices into separate religions. Over time, each direction with its ministers, saints more and more stood out and moved away from the original source. Territorial isolation, delimitation into countries and empires played a role. But they retained the old fundamental principles, which were already incomprehensible to the religions themselves.
Let's dwell on two mudras and make sure that the patriarchs, carrying out church reforms, knew what they were doing:
11. The mudra of life.
Fulfillment of this mudra evens out the energy potential of the whole organism, helps to strengthen its vitality. Increases efficiency, gives vigor, endurance, improves overall well-being.
12. The mudra of Kubera
Kubera (Skt. - “having an ugly body”) is the god of wealth in Hinduism. The Kubera mudra helps to come into contact with the god Kubera and receive his blessing for wealth, new channels and sources of income.
Folding the fingers at the sign of the cross in orthodoxy
There is “Yantra, or a graphic diagram of the world of Kubera - a very powerful, sacred geometric image on a copper plate. It serves to invoke Lord Kubera. She blesses the person with sudden good fortune, wealth and prosperity.
This yantra is used as a tool for attracting cosmic energy, wealth, accumulation of wealth, cash flow, increasing housing, etc. Yantra opens up channels for new sources of income. Yantra assists in success in business, career and profession, as well as in increasing personal income and abundance.
This, it turns out, is where the Jews "borrowed" and appropriated this symbol!
The reforms of the 17th century in Nikon in Christian Russia changed the rituals, in particular, the "sign of the sign of the cross," which served as one of the reasons for the Schism in the Church. Those. the mudra of life was replaced with the mudra of Kubera. Why was it done?
It is possible, of course, as our historians, to explain everything by the "mercantile wishlist" of the reformer. However, nothing in the world just happens, there is a deeper meaning in everything. It turns out that the fingerprints on Christian icons exactly coincide with the so-called "mudras" of the Hindus (isn't that why the elders were called sages?).Perhaps there is also a connection with Sanskrit.
So what happens? And the fact that under Nikon the sign was changed, the mudra of life was replaced with three fingers, which coincides with the wise of Kubera. And all the Christians of Russia were energetically tied not to spirituality, but to the material egregor of money.
And so, for almost 360 years, millions of Christians, standing in churches, make the sign of the cross of the wise Kubera, thereby daily feeding the egregor of the Christian church in its quest for wealth.
And again, in no case do I want to offend the feelings of believing Christians. This is just an observation, and I was not the first to notice it.
Here is the priest's answer to the question: why do saints show mudras on Christian icons?
I am not satisfied with the answer of the clergyman, because it refers to a simple match.
This explanation seems more plausible to me: