Symbols - What does heaven look like
Hand on heart
Where the arm is laid across the chest and the hand placed on the heart it has a double meaning.
The most straightforward meaning is the one related to the expression 'hand on heart', meaning 'I am telling the truth'.
But its more spiritual meaning is related to the belief that the heart, the cardiac plexus, as well as the Anahata chakra are the seat of the Personality, or alternatively the Higher spirit [beliefs differ here]. By placing the barrier of your arm and hand across these three vulnerable areas of the body one was protecting oneself against 'psychic attacks'.
The symbol was well known in Freemasonry and many leaders are shown [as in the painting of Napoleon] protecting themselves, a gesture intended to show that they knew such attacks were possible, but also knew what to do to protect themselves.
This signal is described in our more general video on the symbolism of hands and fingers
For iPad/iPhone users: tap letter twice to get list of items.