This Silent Sunday coincides with the planet Mercury’s exit from its retrograde phase, which began on March 22. When a planet becomes retrograde, its orbit appears to shift into reverse: In reality, however, the rate of orbit slows to such a degree that to other planets spinning by, the retrograde planet seems to be moving backward. In its retrograde phase, a planet’s ruling powers enter into a sort of hibernation. Therefore, the areas of Life that it governs fall into disarray, as there is no overseer of those activities and their associated qualities.
Mercury presides over communication. Within that realm lies everything from speech, to writing, to contracts, to buying and selling, and to coding of every sort. The latter subset thus includes electronics and computers: For example, Mercury Retrograde is the wrong time to purchase a new laptop, or to schedule a flight. Travel delays and glitches are likely to occur, as planes and ground centers function almost solely through computers.
Why would it not have been helpful to mention this mudra three weeks ago when Mercury was moving into its most mischievous period? To enlist the help of Buddhi Mudra at that time would have been akin to attempting conversation with a person in a deep sleep. The energetic vibration of the mudra would have been caught in Mercury’s scrambled matrix, and our own frustration would compound the annoyances resulting from Mercury Retrograde.
On this day, however, when Mercury “goes direct” (i.e., its orbit and rotation speed returns to normal), we can use Buddhi Mudra to encourage the planet’s powers to re-enter our lives. In most planetary events, there is a margin of plus-or-minus four days for the reverberations to be felt here on Earth. Most of us are aware of the heightened feel of energy around the time of a Full Moon, for example. Yet many of the strongest results of that gravitational pull are felt a couple of days before or after the actual peak; for instance, I typically have a night or two of little or no sleep in the days leading up to Full Moon, due to the rising energy.
So, as Mercury begins to speed up again, all of its powers do not automatically swing back into action at full throttle. Buddhi Mudra is formed with the pinky finger, aka the Mercury finger, and thus acts as an ambassador, assuring the planet that we are ready and waiting for its help. Buddhi Mudra also accentuates intuition, which is communication through and with the subtle realms. You may have found that your ability to concentrate or meditate was a bit lessened during the previous three weeks of Mercury Retrograde. To sit with Buddhi Mudra for 11 minutes will reawaken your intuition and focus, all while invoking the energies of planet Mercury to aid the smooth flow of communicative activities and technologies here on Earth.
As always, do a warm-up that aligns and relaxes your spine (e.g., Cat/Cow, standing or seated spinal flexes and rotations, and perhaps seated or reclined twists) and opens your hips (e.g., long lunge or Pigeon, Happy Baby Pose, and Baddha Konasana). When you feel loose and ready to sit, form Buddhi Mudra by touching the tip of the thumb to the tip of the pinky finger. The other three fingers remain together and straight.
I have experimented with this mudra over the years, and when it comes to using it as a Welcome Wagon for Mercury, I like to practice this mudra meditation in two parts. First, with the mudra engaged as described above, I focus my closed eyes on the Third Eye. The upward gaze feels as if I am beckoning Mercury into my magnetic field. After I have practiced this way for 5-10 minutes, I shift my fingers and gaze, and continue the meditation for another 5-10 minutes.
For the second part, curl the pinky finger inside of the thumb, thereby drawing the mudras vibrations further inward and securing their effect of deep concentration and intuition. Additionally, turn your gaze downward to gaze at the tip of the nose through barely open eyes; in kundalini yoga, the eyes are said to be “9/10 closed” when focused on the tip of the nose.
Special note: If either drishti, or focal point, begins to give you a headache or eye strain, open your eyes, circle them in both directions, then return to whatever closed-eye position allows you to meditate serenely.