Meditation Symbols: Spiritual Meaning For Your Yoga Routine

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Meditation is the practice of quieting our minds and accessing our energy centers. There are many different paths to reaching a meditative state. To help get us to that quiet place, some use everyday items like stones, images, and symbols.

Meditation Symbols

Today, we are focusing on the different yoga symbols of meditation and the spiritual meaning of yoga routines.

What are the Most Powerful Meditation Symbols in Modern Yoga?

Yoga symbols are visual representations of meditative states of mind. Yoga is the most potent meditation and spiritual practice to recharge the human body, help center your thoughts and energy, and gain inner peace.

Yoga practice and meditation symbols are used before and after yoga to channel an energy flow and create a spiritual path. The deeper meanings of these ancient sacred symbols may be hidden, but your constant meditation practice using the popular symbols can unlock all hidden wisdom.

Exploring these spiritual symbols and images can help you get the ultimate connection with divine energy during your meditation practice and daily life.

Below are symbols for your meditation practice to incorporate into your next meditation time or yoga routine.

OM Symbol

A famous symbol is the Om symbol. It is one of the most sacred Hindu mantras and is most common in meditation practice. The popular om symbol is believed to have the meaning of the universe in a straightforward sound.

om symbol meditation symbol yoga symbol

Almost all yogis use the “Om” symbol/image to attain the highest level of focus and channel all positive energies towards one’s self. Before every yoga asana, many yoga teachers have the class chant “OM” while inhaling and exhaling.

There are different sounds of Om. If you break the sound down, three main sounds represent different Hindu temples:

A (aahh): The beginning sound is A, representing the waking state of mind. It symbolizes the creation of the universe. 

U (oooh): The Middle Part of the "OM" sound is the dreaming state of mind. It symbolizes the existence of the body beyond its physical state.

M (mmm): the last part of the "OM" sound is the deep sleeping state. This is where the spirits connect to the divine forces of the universe. 

OM symbol brings the focus, calm, and relaxation required through the medication process.

This popular OM symbol can be used during a difficult situation to bring calm, focus, and positivity.

Mandala Symbol

The mandala symbol depicts the harmony of the universe and the circle of life. Mandalas are found across all cultures. A circle is the most common symbol for a mandala, but they come in squares, too. Mandalas have intricate patterns like a conch shell, and spaces within the mandala are spiritual spaces. Think of each space in a mandala as a sacred space. They usually represent a higher state of consciousness and also have universal appeal. Use this symbol to help you stay in the present moment and access to your spiritual world.

mandala symbol yoga meditation

Some places you can find the mandala symbol:

  • Celtic spirals and knot work
  • Christianity – rose windows, rosary, halos
  • Chinese Yin and Yang symbol
  • Hindu Yantras
  • Labyrinths
  • Native American – medicine wheel, dream catchers, Native American shields
  • Navajo Sand Paintings
  • Tibetan Sand Mandalas
  • Calendars follow cycles of time. i.e., Gregorian, Astrological, and Mayan calendars

Lotus Flower Symbol (Open and Closed)

The human mind is a complex yet powerful tool. The open Lotus flower symbolizes enlightenment and the wakefulness of the human mind. The lotus symbolizes purity of the mind, but different colors tell different stories.

lotus flower meditation symbols

According to Women’s Day magazine, the lotus flower comes in many colors, which come with a different meaning:

  • White: Also considered “the womb of the world” (like a baby), the white lotus signifies purity, grace, beauty, wealth, knowledge, and fertility.
  • Pink: Typically referenced in Buddhism, the pink lotus symbolizes Buddha’s earthly symbol. When a pink lotus is a closed bud, it means a spiritual journey. When it’s open in bloom, it means enlightenment.
  • Yellow: A yellow lotus flower symbolizes curiosity, openness, and hospitality.
  • Red: A red lotus flower signifies compassion, sympathy, and passion. Think of it like a red rose. It’s your heart.
  • Blue: A rare lotus, a blue one of its kind represents wisdom.
  • Purple: Also rare, the purple lotus (often referenced in Buddhism) symbolizes balance within yourself, and self-enlightenment.

 A closed lotus flower symbolizes seeking enlightenment; an open lotus flower, on the other hand, represents that enlightenment has been achieved. A guru/Yoga practitioner will always have an open lotus flower for meditation and sacred spaces.

HAMSA Symbol (Hand of Fatima)

HAMSA is associated with the hand of protection and good fortune. Usually depicted with a third eye on the hand, some refer to this symbol as the “evil eye symbol”. Use this symbol for calming during anxiety or panic attacks. The meditation hand symbols are used in many religions as the true representation of the world and its energies. This symbol represents a hand with five fingers that describe the elements or chakras.

hamsa hand meditation symbol
  • Tip of your Thumb: Solar chakra or the fire element
  • Index finger: Heart chakra of the air element
  • Middle finger: Throat chakra of the Ethereal elements
  • Ring finger: Root chakra or the Earth element
  • Pinky finger: Sacral chakra or the water element

In many parts of the world, the Hamsa Hand is considered powerful enough to ward off negativity and evil from oneself or their surroundings during meditation. It’s also one of the many ubiquitous symbols in many religions. 

Apart from yoga and meditation, this symbol is also used in jewelry, tapestries, and tattoos as signs of good luck and protection.

Buddha (Budhi)

In the world of meditation and yoga, the emblem is easy to visualize but the hardest to realize during and after meditation practice. If a guru has gained Buddha, he is known to have gained Budhi, the true sense of wakefulness and enlightenment.

buddha symbol

Buddhist yogis are known to be the calmest people on earth. Buddhists live by three simple yet healthy lifestyle rules:

not to judge 
have no hate 
never be ignorant

The Buddha refers to Siddhattha Gotama (563 to 493 BC), the founder of Buddhism. A real Buddha, i.e., a teacher, is honest, generous, non-judgmental, patient, and non-violent. There needs to be more than the sole image of Buddha in one’s meditation room to gain Buddhi. To achieve Buddhi, you need to have mastered the following before and after meditation.

●     Let go of your ignorance.

●     You should have no hate towards anyone

●     Anger shouldn’t be a part of you

Why are Meditation Symbols Important in Spiritual Practice?

Every yoga symbol/ image has a unique power, and yogis can use these good energy symbols to achieve the highest level of inner peace, patience, happiness, spiritual energy, and concentration. These happiness symbols are believed to have powers that are unlocked with true belief, meaning you can truly master the elements of the earth, inner peace, and its powers if you attain complete focus. During meditation, spiritual practice, and yoga classes, gurus use these symbols to visualize the flow of energy and use it to get their heart’s desires. Many may not believe in the power of these symbols, but the power indeed lies within the beholder’s mind.

​Yoga and meditation practices go back centuries; these common symbols are thousands of years old and are used to achieve the ultimate connection with the divine to gain patience, wakefulness, and inner peace. These symbols can only help you achieve greatness and do you no harm. The true meaning of these symbols lies not in the image but in the belief behind the vector image of the yoga symbol.

The next time you sit down to relax and do yoga, use these symbols in your thoughts to make your yoga more potent and spiritual.