Saturday, 30 September 2017

MUDRA : Asamyuta Hastas - Aish

BHARATANAYAM is a combination of BHAVA / ABINAYA (Expressions), MUDRA (Hand gestures), ADAVU (Leg tappings), TALA (Rhythmic beat) and MUSIC.

NATYA SHASTRA deeply describes the integral beauty of Dance in Sanskrit as; 

"YATO HASTA STATO DRISHTIHI" - Where the hand moves, the eyes follows
"YATO DRISHTIHI STATO MANAHA" - Where eyes move, the Mind follows
"YATO MANA STATO BHAVAHA" - Where the Mind is, there evolves the Feeling
"YATO BHAVAHA STATO RASAHA" - Where there is Feeling, there is Divine Appreciation (Aesthetic Bliss).




MUDRA

Hand gestures are essential in a classical dance as they for the part of expressing each tone of music. In Bharatanayam, Hand gestures are used both in NRITTA and NRITYA

Mudras are categorized as SAMYUTHA HASTAS (Double Hand gestures) and ASAMYUTHA HASTAS (Single Hand gestures).


ASAMYUTHA HASTAS 

Hand gestures expressed in one hand only, commonly known as EKA HASTA MUDRA. Let us have a look at how to perform these gestures and their representations.

1. PATAKA - Flag



Technique : All fingers together in an upright position.

Representation : Stop, River, Threatening, Bless, Month, Year, Taking Oath, Denial of objects, One's Self, Palm Leaf to write letters, Sleep.

2. TRIPATAKA - Three parts of flag



Technique : All the fingers in upright position with only the ring finger bent. 

Representation : A Crown, To apply Tilak, Flames of fire, An Arrow, A Tree.

3. ARDAPATAKA - Half flag 



Technique : All the fingers upright with both the Ring and Little fingers bent.

Representation : A knife, A Tower, Leaves, Both. 

4. KARTARIMUKHA - Scissors 


 

Technique : The forefinger and the middle finger are split with the little and the ring fingers pressed to the thumb. 

Representation : Scissors, Corner of an eye, Weeping, Creeper, Two different things, Lightning. 

5. MAYURA - Peacock



Technique : The ring finger bent to press the thumb while all other fingers are in upright position.

Representation : Peacock, Separating Hair locks, Applying Tilak,  Dispersing water, A Bird.

6. ARDHACHANDRA - Half Moon



Technique : Perform Pataka Mudra but with the thumb separated from other fingers.

Representation : Half moon, Waist, Prayers, Hand seizing the Throat, Beginning.

7. ARALA 



Technique : The Fore finger is bent while all other fingers are upright like Pataka Mudra.

Representation : Drinking Nectar /Poison, Violent wind, Elephant's ears.

8. SHUKHATUNTA - Parrot Head



Technique : Perform Arala Mudra along with the ring finger bent. 

Representation : Shooting of a spear or an arrow, Way, Violent Mood.

9. MUSHTI - Closed fist 



Technique : The thumb holds all the palm the fingers closed together.

Representation : Combative position, Grasping objects. 

10. SHIKHARA 



Technique : Perform Mushti mudra with only the thumb in upright position.

Representation : A Bow, A Pillar, Lips, Drinking, Act of Embracing, Manliness, What, Where.

11. KAPITTA



Technique : Perform Shikhara Mudra with the fore finger bent to press the thumb.

Representation : Goddess Lakshmi, Lord Ganesha, Holding flowers, Holding Cymbals, Milking Cows, Pull Hair locks.  

12. KATAKAMUKHA MUDRA is represented in two different variations.

Variation (a) 



Technique : Bring the forefinger and middle finger down touching the thumb while the ring and little fingers are split in upright position.

Representation : Preparing a paste of Sandal, Holding garland or necklace, Plucking or picking or offering flowers, Pulling the bow string, Offering Beetle leaves.

Variation (b) 



Technique : Perform Kapitta Mudra with the middle finger bent and extended forward while the ring and little fingers are split in upright position.

Representation : Woman, Lord Krishna's Flute, Anklets, Goddess Lakshmi, Arrow, Ornaments, Garland, Flowers.

13. SUCHI 



Technique: The forefinger is upright while all other fingers are pressed to thumb.

Representation : The Supreme Soul, The World, Threatening, Number One, There, Here, Silence, A Needle, Astonishment, Slim, Lord Vishnu's Sudarshan Chakra.

14. ARDHASUCHI 



Technique : Perform Suchi Mudra with the thumb also in upright position.

Representation : Worms, Sprouts, Baby birds.

15. CHANDRA KALA - Moon



Technique : Perform Shikhara Mudra with the forefinger held straight.

Representation : Crescent on Lord Shiva, Face, Drops of Water, Holy Ganges, Measurement from Forefinger till thumb.

16. PADMAKOSHA 



Technique : All the fingers are split in upright position but brought closer without any touch to each other.

Representation : Fruits especially wood apples, Ball, Egg, Sweets, Flower buds slowly blooming, Keep small morsels of rice, Bunch of Flowers.

17. SARPASRISHA - Snake hood



Technique : All fingers in upright position but with their tips bent a little to form a hollowed palm.

Representation : Snake, Hissing sounds, Offering water, Moving to and fro, Arms of Wrestlers, Hand Power.

18. MRIGASRISHA 



Technique : All three fingers bent straight and not too low with the thumb and little finger upright.

Representation : Lord Krishna's Flute, Massage on legs, Lad or Kid, Calling the beloved, Deer's Head. 

19. SIMHAMUKHA - Lion faced



Technique : Both the middle and ring fingers are bent and stretched to touch the thumb while the fore finger and little finger are in upright position.

Representation : Deer, Rabbit, Face of Lion, Cow, Homa (Fire sacrifice), Animal munching.

20. KANGULA / LANGULA



Technique : Perform Padmakosha Mudra with the ring finger bent to touch the palm inward. 

Representation : Beetle nut tree, Lhily flowers, Coconut, Bells and Ornaments, Lakuca (Asparagus) fruit.

21. ALAPADMA - Bloomed Lotus or Flower.



Technique : All the fingers fully stretched without any touch to each other as if questioning why?

Representation : Full Body, Bloomed Flower, Fruits, Show Beauty, Facial Express, Village or Town, Separation,  Circular Movement, Why.

22. CHATURA



Technique : Perform Mrigasrisha Mudra but with the thumb placed on the bases of the three fingers while the little finger is upright.

Representation : Small portions / quantities, Sweetness, Affection towards kids or beloved, Grief, Astonishment, Oil and Ghee, Differentiation.

23. BRAHMARA 



Technique : Perform Katakamukha Mudra but with only the forefinger bent inward.

Representation : Bee sucking Nectar from Flowers, Birds, Wing, Anger in eyes.

24. HAMSASYE - Swan's Beak 



Technique : Place the forefinger on thumb stretched down while the other three fingers are split in upright position.

Representation : Tying Thread, Period or Time, Draw a Picture, Light a Lamp, Auspicious Occasion or Festival, Homa.

25. HAMSAPAKSHA 



Technique : Perform Mrigasrisha Mudra but with the thumb touching the other three fingers.

Representation : Procrastination, Slowly, Kin, Fame, Listen.

26. SANDAMSHA 


 


Technique : Movement of fingers by opening and closing of all the fingers touching together.

Representation : Number five, Anxiety, Offerings to deities, Wound.

27. MUKULA - Bud



Technique : All the fingers touch together at their tips.

Representation : Flower or Bud, Eating, Navel, Holding

28. TAMRACHOODA 



Technique : Perform Kapitta Mudra with the thumb touching all the other fingers when the forefinger alone is bent.

Representation : Bird's head especially Rooster or Hen, Knock on door, A Calf.

29. TRISHULA - "Tri" in Sanskrit is Three and "Shula" is Spear.


Technique : While the little finger is bent down to touch the thumb, all the other fingers are in upright position ; Just like depicting Three and showing the weapon "Trishula".  

Representation : Number Three, Applying Ash on forehead, Holy Bilva Leaf for Lord Shiva, Holy Trinity - Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva

30. OORNANABHA 


Technique : All the fingers stretched, split and bent without touching each other, .with the palm facing upwards.

Representation : Fire, Ball, Snow flake, Lotus, Heat, Light.

31. VYAGARAHA 


Technique : Perform Oornanabha ; depicting the paws of a Tiger.

Representation : Tiger, Demon, Narasimha Avatar, Ferocious. 

32. KATAKA


Technique : Perform Simhamukha Mudra but with the middle and ring fingers not touching the thumb to form a 'C' shape.

Representation : Dumro (Drums) of Lord Shiva, Head of an Animal, A Bracelet.

Each and every Mudra is performed with the Adavu, Music and Abhinaya to form the wonderful Dance "Bharatanatyam", the Indian Classical art.

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