Vitraka Mudra
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Vitarka Mudra (Buddha Gesture of Discussion): Steps, Benefits & More

Vitarka mudra is depicted in the Buddhist tradition that is one of the hand gestures of discussion of the teachings of the Buddha.

This hand gesture is found in many Buddha statues in sitting, standing, walking, and reclining images. It is usually made with the right palm next to the heart, although it is sometimes represented with both hands. This gesture is often depicted in images originating from central Thailand.

The pointing hand, usually the right hand, is in front of the heart, with the palm facing out. The index finger and the thumb join together to form a circle that signifies perfection without any beginning or end. The remaining fingers are held upward, which represents the transmission of the Buddha’s teachings.

Vitarka Mudra (Buddha Gesture of Discussion) Meaning And Origin 

The gesture of the Vitarka mudra is known as the teaching posture. The word Vitarka means “reasoning,” “consideration” or “deliberation”. It is also called “discussion Mudra” when a teacher wants to impart knowledge or engage in discussion. The sign is part of an ancient language of hand gestures called mudras or “to seal or closure”, which was developed thousands of years ago in India.

The Buddha spent most of his time discussing his enlightenment or explaining Buddhist teachings with his disciples. Due to its explanatory nature, it is also known as Vyakhana Mudra (Mudra of explanation).

Moreover, Vitarka mudra can be seen in many other forms in areas where Mahayana Buddhism is dominant, particularly in the countries of East Asia. This mudra is also sometimes placed in the place of Dharmachakra mudra. It is also called “the gesture of debate” or “discussion mudra”.

In Tibet, the Vitarka mudra is often a common gesture by deities in Yab-Yum as a mystic gesture of Taras and Bodhisattvas, with some variations. This mudra is also known as Prajanalinganabhinaya mudra in Tibet.

In Conclusion, The Vitarka mudra marks one of the most important moments in the Buddha’s life, the occasion when he gave his first sermon to his companions after his Enlightenment at the Deer Park in Sarnath. Thus it signifies the Wheel of the teaching of the Dharma.

Steps To Do Vitarka Mudra (Teaching or Discussion)

In this mudra, the thumb and forefinger of the right hand touch their ends to form a circle. This chakra represents the dharma chakra, or in spiritual terms, the union of method and knowledge.

It is almost like Abhaya Mudra as well as the fingers share similarities with the Dharmachakra mudra, but in this mudra, the thumb touches the index finger.

To Perform Vitarka Mudra, First of all, choose a quiet palace. Sit in any comfortable yoga asana or any meditative posture such as Sukhasana, Vajrasana, or Padmasana. If your cant sit in these yoga asanas then sit on the table or bed.

It is usually practiced with the right hand facing forward, keeping the thumb and forefinger together while keeping the other fingers straight. Quite similar to Abhaya and Varada mudra, but touching the tip of the thumb with the index finger to form a perfect circle.

The palm is facing outwards. The remaining middle finger, ring finger, and little fingers are pointed towards the sky.

Earlier versions of the pose included the right hand of the images, but these days the gesture is often represented with both hands.

Many other forms of Vitarka mudra have been observed, in which the palm of the left hand is placed on the lap upwards, with the right hand being raised to the chest. In the other version, the index and little fingers of both the hands can be seen moving the middle and ring fingers slightly inward. In this practice, the left hand can be seen pointing up while the right hand can be seen pointing down.

Sometimes the middle finger and thumb are seen touching each other which is taken as a gesture of great compassion. Similarly, the touch of the thumb and ring finger indicates good luck.

Vitarka Mudra Benefits

  • The practice of Vitarka mudra is commonly practiced to promote knowledge.
  • It develops wisdom, knowledge, spirituality and energy as well as ultimately transmits the teachings of Gautam Buddha.
  • By meditating in Vitarka mudra, energy is uplifted.
  • It brings clarity to mind and thoughts and improves the analytical ability to make intelligent decisions.
  • This mudra is also helpful in maintaining connection with the outside world (elements) to absorb energy.

Timing and Duration

While Vitarka Mudra can be practiced at any time of day, ancient wisdom suggests that the early hours of the morning, particularly between 4-6 AM, are especially conducive to spiritual practices. During this sacred window of time, practitioners to access higher states of consciousness with greater ease.

However, there is no rigid time duration prescribed for Vitarka Mudra practice; instead, allow your intuition to guide you as you immerse yourself in the experience.

Conclusion

Vitarka Mudra signifies the teaching stage of sermons in Buddhism. The circle formed by the thumb and forefinger maintains a constant flow of energy because there is no beginning or end, only perfection.

This mudra can invite you to receive and discuss the teachings for growth and awakening in your life.

Disclaimer

The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional