This Is Why I Always Fold My Hands

You can often see my greeting you with folded hands. Some people feel strange and they ask me why do I do this. I thought that a blog post will explain it better.

As per ancient Indian tradition, greeting with folded hands is followed since time immemorial. The gesture is often said with Namaste and it means that the goodness in me, bows to the goodness in you; we’re equal.

It’s such an equalizer.

When Indians meet people they know or strangers with whom they want to initiate a conversation, the traditional greeting — with folded hands — is the customary courtesy greeting, to begin with, and often to end with. It could be just a casual or formal greeting, a cultural convention, or an act of worship.

However, there’s much more to it than meets the eye. The real meeting between people is the meeting of their minds. When we greet one another with folded hands and the magical word in our mouth, it means, may our minds meet. The bowing down of the head is a gracious form of extending friendship in love, respect, and humility.

I love greeting people as per our traditional Indian style and hence you can always find me doing this with you at the start and the end of a meeting. Strangely, this is not used much in our daily life; especially at the workplace; many feel weird. I’ve had people laughing at me when I do this before an official meeting.

I don’t know what’s so funny or weird in this!

I don’t understand people and they don’t understand me. I like to follow some of our significant traditions; they’ve got such a deep meaning.

The reason why we do Namaste has a deeper spiritual significance. It recognizes the belief that the life force, the divinity, the self, or the almighty in me is the same in all. Acknowledging this oneness with folded hands, I honor the person we meet.

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