Why is it necessary to keep our hands at the junctions of thighs?

—Sukhmandeep Singh, India


Dear Sukhmandeep,

During meditation, we position our hands with palms upturned at the junction of the thigh and abdomen for several reasons. First it is important that our shoulders not be rounded forward and our chest not collapsed when we meditate. We want our energy to rise during meditation and a slumped posture interferes with this. Also having an open heart during meditation is important as engaging the heart’s energy is essential to make progress in meditation. An open physical posture in the heart area helps with this. Drawing the hands back toward the junction of thigh and abdomen helps with both shoulders and chest. Experiment for yourself. Slide the hands out toward your knees and notice the shoulders and chest rounding and collapsing. Now, slide the hands back toward the hips and notice the heart/chest area expanding and opening and the shoulders coming back to neutral. Do not try to draw the shoulders far back in an extreme position which will cause tension. Just bring them to neutral. We turn the hands upward because it increases our receptivity. Try positioning your hands down on your thighs and tune in and then turn them up and see if you can notice a difference in your openness. The arms and hands are connected to the heart center.

It depends on the length of your arms whether you should bring your hands all the way back to the junction of thigh and abdomen or when you need to slide the hands forward a little on your thighs. You do not want your wrists cocked at an uncomfortable angle which happens when you have long arms and you position the hands all the way back to the junction.

If you’ve not already read Lessons in Meditation you might want to take a look.

Many blessings to you in your meditation practice.
Nayaswami Mukti

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