Indian classical dance. Kuchipudi style.




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Asamyuta Hastas. Single Hands Gestures

ANGUSTHA: THUMB FINGER

TARJANI: FORE FINGER

MADHYUMA: MIDDLE FINGER

ANAMIKA: RING FINGER

KANISHTHA: LITTLE FINGER

 

SHLOKA:

PATAKAS TRIPATAKASCHA
TATHA VAI KARTARIMUKAHA

ARDHACHANDRO HERALASCHA
SHUKATUNDASTATHAIVA CHA

MUSHTISCHA SHIKHARAKYASCHA
KAPITHA KATAKAMUKAHA

SUCHASYA PADMAKOSHASCHA
TATHA VAI SARPASIRSHAKAHA

MRIGASIRSHA PARO GNEYO
HASTABHINAYA YOKTRIBIHI

LANGULO HELAPADMASCHA
CHATURO BHRAMARASTATHA

HAMSASYO HAMSAPAKSHASCHA
SAMDAMSO MUKULASTATHA

URNANABHA TAMRACHUDAHA
CHATURVIMSADIME KARAHA

 

In this shloka 24 Asamyuta Hastas are enumerated. Below are descriptions and main meanings of each hasta.

1. PATAKA (Flag)

PRASARITAGRAAH SAHITA

YASYANGULYO BHAVANTIHI

KUNCHITASCHA TATHANGUSTHA

SA PATAKA ITI SMRUTAHA
 

Meaning: When all fingers are straightened and kept close to one another, it is the Pataka hasta.

Usages: This hasta is used to describe clouds, forest, river; to open a door, to beat; it is used in Natyarambhe position (the beginning of dance).

2. TRIPATAKA (Flag with three fingers)

PATAKE TU YADA VAKRANAMIKA

TVANGULIBHAVET

TRIPATAKAH SA VIGNEYAHA

KARMACHASYANIBODHATA
 

Meaning: If in the Pataka hasta the ring finger is kept bend, it is the Tripataka hasta.

Usages: crown, a tree, raising tongues of flame, a lamb, an arrow.

3. KARTARIMUKHA (Scissors' blades)

TRIPATAKE YADA HASTE

BHAVETPRUSHTAVALOKINI

TARJANI MADHYAMAYASCHA

TADASAU KARTARIMUKAHA
 

Meaning: When in the Tripataka hasta the index finger faces the back of the middle finger, it is the Kartarimukha hasta.

Usages: separation, corner of an eye, lightning.

4. ARDHACHANDRA (Crescent Moon)

YESYANGULASTU VINATAHA

SAHANGUSTHENA KAPARAM

SORDHACHANDRO HI VIGNEHAKARA

KARMASYA VAKSYATE
 

Meaning: When the thumb is bent outside, the rest of the fingers are brought together and the shape resembles a bow, it is the Ardhachandra hasta.

Usages: half Moon, a waist, to greet people of lower castes.

5. ARALA (Bent)

ADYA DHANURLATA KARYA

KUNCHITANGUSTHAKA TATHA

SESHA BHINNORDHVAVALITA

HYARALANGULYA SMRUTAHA
 

Meaning: When the index finger is bent like a bow and the thumb is bent without touching the other fingers and the rest of the fingers are straightened and kept closely together, it is the Arala hasta.

Usages: drinking nectar, poison, pride, courage, beauty, contentment, a gesture of blessing.

6. SHUKATUNDA (Parrot's beak)

ARALASYA YADA VAKRA ANAMIKA

TVANGULIR BHAVET

SHUKATUNDASTU SA KARAHA KARMA

CHASYA NIBODHATA
 

Meaning: When the ring finger of Arala hasta is bent, it is the Shukatunda hasta.

Usages: a parrot's beak, shooting an arrow.

7. MUSHTI (The first)

ANGULYO YASYA HASTASYA

TALAMADHU GRASAMSTITAHA

TASAMUPARI CHANGUSTAHA SA

MUSHTIRITI SANGNITAHA
 

Meaning: When all fingers are bent towards the palm and the thumb is placed on top of the other four fingers, it is the Mushti hasta.

Usages: holding hair, fighting, showing strength.

8. SHIKHARA (Peak)

ASYAVA TU YADA MUSHTE

URDHVANGUSHTA PRAYUJATE

HASTA SA SHIKHARO NAMA TADA

GNEYA PRAYOKTRIBIHI
 

Meaning: If the thumb of the Mushti hasta is lifted up, it is the Shikhara hasta.

Usages: a bow, lips, painting feet, a pillar; to show how hair stands on end.

9. KAPITTA (Wood apple)

ASYAVA SHIKHARAKHYASYA

MUKHENGUSHTHENIPIDITA

YADA PRADESINI VAKRA SA

KAPITTHASTADA SMRUTAHA
 

Meaning: When in Shikhara hasta the forefinger is kept curved and pressed to the thumb, it is the Kapitta hasta.

Usages: weapons (a sword, a bow), throwing a spear, shakti (female energy), milking a cow, an arrow.

10. KATAKAMUKHA (Bracelet's lock)

 

UTKSHIPTAVAKRA TU YADA

ANAMIKA SAKANIYASI

ASYAIVA TU KAPITTASYA

TADASOU KATAKAMUKAHA
 

Meaning: If the ring finger and the little finger of the Kapitta hasta are raised up and the middle finger is bent forward, then it is the Katakamukha hasta.

Usages: Hotra (sacrifice), Havya (a ritual of fire offering), an umbrella, a garland of flowers, churning.

11. SUCHI (Needle)

KATAKAKHYE YADA HASTE

TARJANI SAMPRASARITA

HASTA SUCHIMUKHO NAMA TADA

GNEYA PRAYOKTRIVIHI
 

Meaning: When the forefinger of the Kapitta hasta is stretched out, it is the Suchi hasta.

Usages: it is used to describe number one; the whole world.

12. PADMAKOSHA (Lotus bud)

SYANGULSTU VIRALAHA

SAHANGUSHTENA KUNCHITAHA

URDHVA HYAMSAGATAGRASCHA SA

BHAVET PADMAKOSHAKAHA
 

Meaning: All the fingers including the thumb are kept separately and their ends are slightly curved, it is the Padmakosha hasta.

Usages: lotus, fruits of a Bilva tree, women breasts.

13. SARPASIRSHA (Snake's head)

ANGULYA SAHITA SARVA

SAHANGUSHTENA YASYA TU

TATHA NIMNATALASCHAIVA SA TU

SARPASIRA KARAHA
 

Meaning: When all fingers including the thumb are kept close to one another and are slightly bent towards the palm, it is the Sarpasirsha hasta.

Usages: a snake's hood, the offering of water to gurus and sages, pouring water, the movement of the Earth.

14. MRIGASIRSHA (Deer's head)

ADHOMUKHINAM SARVASAM

ANGULNAM SAMAGAMAHA

KANISHTANGUSHTAKAURDHVU

SA BHAVET MRIGASIRSHAKAHA
 

Meaning: If all fingers of the Sarpasirsha hasta are stretched out and bent forward (besides the thumb and the little finger which are raised up), then it is the Mrigasirsha hasta.

Usages: To express a woman, calling, deer's head, cheeks.

15. LANGULA

TRETAGNI SAMSTITA MADHYA

TARJANYANGUSHTAKASTATHA

ANGULENAMIKA VAKRA TATHA

CHORDHVA KANIYASI
 

Meaning: When the little finger is raised up, the ring finger is kept bent and the other three fingers are separated, it is the Langula hasta.

Usages: various fruit, fire, angry objections of a woman.

16. ALAPADMA (Lotus)

AVARTI NYA KARATALE

YASYANGULYO BHAVANTI HI

PARSVAGATAVIKIRNASCHA SA

BHAVET ALAPADMAKAHA
 

Meaning: When all fingers are separated from one another and are turned towards the palm in a circular way, it is the Alapadma hasta.

Usages: a lotus, a breast, beauty.

17. CHATURA (Four)

TYSRAH PRASARITA YATRA TATHA

CHORDHVA KANAYASI

TASAM MADHYASTATHANGUSHTAHA

SA KARASCHATURASMRUTAHA
 

Meaning: When three fingers are spread out, the little finger is lifted up and the thumb is kept within the palm, it is the Chatura hasta.

Usages: to show something little, artfulness.

18. BHRAMARA (Bee)

MADHYAMANGUSTASAMDAMSO

VAKRA CHAIVA PRADESHINI

URDHVAMANYA PRAKEERNA CHA

ANGULYO BHRAMARE KARE
 

Meaning: When the middle finger and the thumb touch each other and the forefinger is bent and the other two fingers are separated and raised, it is the Bhramara hasta.

Usages: a bee, a wing.

19. HAMSASYA (Swan's beak)

TARJANIMADHYAMANGUSHTAHA

TRETAGNISTHA NIRANTARAHA

BHAVEYURHAMSVAVAKTRASYA

SESHA DVE SAMPRASARITE
 

Meaning: When the forefinger and the thumb are kept without any gap and the remaining fingers are stretched out, it is the Hamsasya hasta.

Usages: softness, holding a garland, tying something up.

20. HAMSAPAKSHA (Swan's wing)

SAMAHPRASARITASTISRA TATHA

CHORDHVA KANIYASI

ANGUSHTA KUNCHITASCHAIVA

HAMSAPAKSHA ITI SMRUTAHA
 

Meaning: If three fingers are held straightened like a wing of a swan and the little finger is raised and the thumb is kept bent, it is the Hamsapaksha hasta.

Usages: touching the chin as a gesture of apologizing or embarrassment, showing respect.

21. SANDAMSA (Pincers)

TARJANYANGUSHTASANDAMSO

HIRALSYA YATHA BHAVET

ABHUGNATALAMADYASCHA SA

SANDAMSA ITI SMRUTAHA
 

Meaning: When the thumb and the forefinger of the Arala hasta are bent like pincers and the palm is a little hollow, it is the Sandamsa hasta.

Usages: wearing a garland, picking up flowers, picking up blades of grass, leaves, hairs or threads, holding or pulling out an arrow, removing a thorn; painting eyes, writing a letter.

22. MUKALA (Bud)

SAMANATAGRA SAHITA

YASYANGULYO BHAVANTI HI

URDHVA HAMSAMUKHASAIVA

BHAVEN MUKULAHA KARAHA
 

Meaning: When all the fingers of the Hamsasya hasta are bent and kept close to one another on their tips, it is the Mukula hasta.

Usages: a lotus bud; taking food; blowing a kiss to somebody; giving something as a present.

23. URNANABHA (Spider)

PADMAKOSHASYA HASTASYA

ANGULYA KUNCHITA YADA

URNANABHA SA VIGNEYAHA

KESHACHOVRYAGRUHADISHU
 

Meaning: When the fingers in the Padmakosha hasta are bent harder, it is the Urnanabha hasta because it resembles a spider.

Usages: scratching the head, receiving stolen property, leprosy, lions, tigers, holding a stone.

24. TAMRACHUDA (Cock)

MADHYAMANGUSHTASANDAMSO

VAKRA CHAIVA PRADESHINI

SHESHETALASHE KARTAVYA

TAMRACHUDE KARANGULI
 

Meaning: If the middle finger crosses with the thumb, the index finger is kept bent and the remaining two fingers are pressed against the palm, it is the Tamrachuda hasta.

Usages: to reproach, to strike, to beat time, to demonstrate self-confidence, rapidity and thus to indicate any kind of gesticulation.

 

 
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