Thursday, December 4, 2014

Ahh Yes, Hand Gestures!

Have you ever noticed that during a conversation either you or the person speaking to you will manage to use their hands for descriptive use? Many people find that gesticulating with their hands helps to further their point.

It is true, that before humankind ever learned the art of vocalizing and we relied on our body language for communication. What is funny though is that even after billions and billions of years, we still find it necessary to enhance any language with movement.

 Many of these gestures reflect good intentions, for instance,
 the “OK” sign,  the thumb and forefinger hook together
 while keeping the hand straight  or crossed fingers, 
 which means “good luck.” Holding your thumb up  refers
 to “good job” or  agreement. A salute pays respect
 as does a handshake or even a wave.
In prayer, we hold our hands straight up, palms and fingers together, which when paired with a slight bow and the word “Namaste” is a
common greeting for the Hindus of South Asia.
Knocking on wood for those of us who are
superstitious is believed to keep evil tidings
away. The Vulcan salute, for all those
Star Trek fans, consists of holding the
hand straight up, palm facing out and creating a gap between the middle and ring finger while holding the thumb off to the side. This harder gesture means
“Go forth and  prosper."
We also have the signals that aren’t as well intentioned as those above. The loser sign which is formed by creating an “L” with the thumb and forefinger and holding it to your forehead. The finger gun, I bet you can figure this one out, tends to mean boredom. How about when you hold your hand straight up in front of you, palm facing out, and fingers straight? This hand signal usually means “Talk to the hand because the ears aren’t listening.”
Then of course, there is "The Finger," which is just holding the middle finger straight up at your intended subject and has not such a nice meaning. This symbol is most commonly used in the state of Massachusetts and known as “The Massachusetts Hello.”

Whatever the gesticulations may be keep an eye out for them during your everyday conversations. It is interesting to see how many people need to use their hands while communicating.

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