The 8th International Conference Buddhism & Australia
Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia Illustrations
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It is used as a sign of respect and a greeting in India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Burma, Indonesia, and amongst yoga practitioners and adherents of similar traditions. The gesture is incorporated into many yoga asanas. The gesture is also used for worship in many Eastern religions.
The gesture is also known as hrdayanjali mudra meaning "[[reverence to the heart] seal]]" (from hrd, meaning "heart") and atmanjali mudra meaning "reverence to the self seal" (from atman, meaning "self").
Anjali mudra is performed by pressing the palms of the hands together. The fingers are together with fingertips pointing up. The hands are pressed together firmly and evenly.
Anjali mudra is normally accompanied by a slight bowing of the head.
The gesture is used for both greetings and farewells, but carries a deeper significance than a simple "hello" or "goodbye".
Anjali mudra is performed as part of a physical yoga practice with an aim to achieving several benefits.
anjaneyasana (lunge) - with arms overhead
hanumanasana (monkey pose)
malasana (garland pose)
matsyasana (fish pose) - an advanced variant
prasarita padottanasana (wide-legged forward bend) - an advanced variant with hands behind the back
tadasana/samasthiti (mountain pose) - a variant of the pose used during sun salutation sequences
Urdhva Hastasana (upward salute/extended mountain pose) - arms overhead
virabhadrasana I (warrior I) - arms overhead
vrksasana (tree pose)