Qi Sphere n’ Finger-Knitting: Peas n’ Carrots
My previous essay, “qi sphere: beginning”:
– engaged the energetics of the hands,
– produced palpable results in a jiffy,
– illustrated common fundamentals:
1. Opening the tissues & channels,
3. vertical integration.
I feel I’d be remiss if I didn’t present “finger-knitting mudras” (FKMs) along with the qi sphere, as this style of mudra is remarkably effective along similar lines as sphere work, yet on a more physical level. Finger-knitting mudras complement qi sphere work wonderfully.
Finger-knitting mudras also contrast with the qi sphere by being more complex in several ways (understanding theory, initial doing, historical baggage). My approach here is simplicity so I’ll cut through those jungles as best I can. 🙂
A Little Theory
The basic theory of FKMs is much the same as I described in more detail in the qi sphere essay: The qi flows with increasing dynamics at the ends (arms -> hands -> finger tips, similarly w/ legs) plus the interaction of left~right hands’ polarity triggers centered integration not only to create & work with the hands’ sphere but also by resonance fostering similar effects within the torso, brain, center-line in general. Get it? 😉 Bottom line: a lot of the right things add up well to make hand energetics effectively spark n’ shine, good results with little effort.
The finger-knitting mudras differ from the qi sphere in that fingers not only physically touch, they cross-weave, much like macrame, with a creativity and variety that you’d never imagine. Deeper physical engagement of the fingers emphasizes opening of denser tissue layers within the body.
Most of the finger-knitting mudras are pretty safe to get into, but people vary. Simple caution: don’t ever strain your fingers, hands, wrists. The mudras should produce a feeling of comfortable flex. If you feel strain, you’ve gone too far. Don’t do that. 🙂
As to detailed theory, the specific energetics of each finger and in-depth understandings of what each finger-knitting mudra does, both could be the basis for extensive study and are beyond the scope of this essay. I find that alignment with general principles and palpably good results are sufficient. You can feel and judge for yourself.
Getting Started with Finger-Knitting Mudras
Start with learning one or two mudras. The kuji-in (set of nine mudras, presented in part 2 of this essay) tend to be the most popular and are often presented first. However, finger-knitting mudras are unusual enough that you’re likely to “whaaaa …???” when first learning. One or two are plenty to start, lol.
1. Vitality Mudra
Sifu Matsuo instructs re: the Vitality Mudra:
Video clips used with permission. Thank you! to Sifu Matsuo. Video and ordering information are in the youtube description of the video.
Getting into the Vitality mudra begins with peace:
1. Make peace signs with both hands.
2. Put your right wrist over your left and interlock the fingertips of the peace signs.
3. Interlock the pinkies’ fingertips.
4. Thumbs touch middle fingers.
Once your hands are successfully in the mudra: relax, breathe comfortably deeply, feel what you feel. … for how long? People often feel some effect within the space of three comfortably deep breaths. (Yes, they really work that quickly.) Hang out with it as long as you like, from a few moments to more sustained meditative lengths. More extensive instruction in Sifu Matsuo’s video, above.
Notice that interlocking fingertips are emphasized, which is common in finger-knitting mudras. Clever and effective: Chinese medical theory describes the fingertips as places where the qi is very dynamic and acupuncture treatments at the ends tend to activate the whole channel.
2. Mind Seal Mudra
1. cross pinky fingers to the hilt, opposite thumbtips gently hold ’em in place
2. ring fingers point upward, resting along each other
3. cross middle fingers, opposite index fingertips gently hold ’em in place
This concludes part 1 of “finger-knitting mudras”. I suggest you become comfortable with one or both of the above mudras, give them time to soak in for days, weeks, as long as you like. Then, *if* you find that you are hungry for more, part 2 will be published in not-too-long. 🙂