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  • Jen Paynter

Seal your Sankalpa

You've gone through the internal searching found who you want to be. Worked out what your sankalpa is, your raison d'etre what that one line might look like "I am...".


Now you just need to lock it in ditch the self doubt. Become that person with your whole being and fully embrace it.

So you've set your intention. Now what?


If you're not there yet, jump back a post for sankalpa tips coming into 2021.

There are ceremonies and rituals for releasing things writing them on pages, setting them alight. But what about the things we want to protect or keep?

Back in the days when letter writing, of the pen and paper variety, was a means of communicating, you might have sealed your letter to someone special with a kiss and a splash of fragrance to make sure it arrived safely.


If you were nobility that seal might have been a blob of candle wax, to keep the messenger from taking a peak. A means of protecting the contents and keeping it safe for the recipient.

Pharaohs tombs were sealed with protectors at the gates, houses and churches are built with gargoyles on the eves to keep evil away. There was even a myth that encouraged you to seal ideas in registered envelopes and send them to yourself, in case someone took them at a later date, you then had proof that they were yours first. It's a bit of a theme. Seal something to keep it safe.

How do you seal a sankalpa?


Sealing an intent to etch it deep within your being it doesn't hurt to ask for a bit of help.

Mahapratisara

Image from the Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia


There's a mudra for that.


Older than the pen and paper. Mudras are hand gestures or sometimes called seals, bringing together meridian points for the purpose of a specific outcome. The eighth mudra for Mahapratisara is used for the purpose of sealing your sankalpa.

Just who is Mahapratisara anyway?


Mahapratisara it turns out is the original Wonder Woman. You might recognise her idol, a golden goddess with eight arms on a lotus held up by lions.


In one of her arms, she holds a lasso (sound familiar DC Comics?), she also had a flaming sword for fending off dragons and fish. I initially wasn’t sure about the fish, but just this week I had a nasty run in with a single spike on a decomposing blowfish. My apologies to the goddess she obviously knows more than I do, but I digress.


Her talents include granting promises or wishes specifically for us mortal folk. She can help you to break out of confinement or prison. Umm, lockdown anyone?


We all know that being accountable to someone else, even if they happen to be a 10th century goddess, makes us more likely to follow through.


In amongst her swag of essential weaponry, is a scripture. It is this that you mimic with your hands to embed your sankulpa and send your wish to the goddess.


The Scripture Holding Mudra or Mahpratisara Mudra.


Instructions: Rest your left palm in your lap palm facing up, place your right hand on top - palm facing down.

Rub your hands together three times, warming her heart. Then clap three times to wake her up, raising your top hand, flipping left hand on top, and flipping again to come back to where you started. You can watch a gorgeous clip where Living Buddha Lian-sheng demonstrates (jump to 2.38 to get straight to the eighth mudra).



So I was thinking, if I had eight arms, here’s what I would use them for to get to yoga -assuming there were no dragons that needed slaying on the way.


A modern yogi’s eight essentials for yoga class.

  1. Yoga mat

  2. Water bottle

  3. Pony tail tie

  4. Phone

  5. Keys

  6. Wallet

  7. Block

  8. Strap (which is pretty much a lasso, when you think about it)


What are your yoga essentials?


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