The Seven Chakras – Exploring A Mystical Dimension of Ones SelfLuke Coutinho
Everyone is talking about chakras! But, what are they? How do we align them? How do we vibe with it? Is only doing yoga asana practice enough? Whether you’ve encountered this term when in downward facing dog during your yoga class or done pranayama, knowing what your chakras are, where to look for them, and how to unblock them may be the missing key to a happier, healthier life.
In this article, we introduce you to the fascinating world of chakras.
What are Chakras?
Chakras are the energy centres of the body. They’re located within the body along our spine, starting at its base and running upwards to the crown of the head. The Chakras coincide with a gland within the human body, and they individually radiate a particular colour and energy. Since each chakra relates to specific spiritual, emotional, psychological and physical aspects of our being, it is said that the blockage or malfunction of these chakras can cause physical, psychological and emotional disorders. But, on the other hand, the conscious awareness and balancing of these energy centres are believed to steer us to well-being and healthiness. Therefore, one of the aims of yoga practice is to stimulate and balance the chakras or energies within the body.
Function and Importance of the Chakras
The chakras are the distribution centres. They distribute energies to their local regions. Each chakra is found in a specific region, and it caters to that particular region. For instance, the chakra will distribute the prana (life force)to the pelvic region providing energy for the organs within the pelvic area. When a chakra isn’t functioning correctly, this distribution gets disturbed, and physical or energetic issues arise.
What do they look like?
There are many myths about the form of the chakras. Some say chakras are like whirling discs; some believe chakras are like flowers hanging from the spine, and some think they’re like candy cones. The confusion exists because the chakras can’t be seen by the eyes or by any device. So, we believe what we’ve heard. Traditional scriptures say that a chakra may be a sphere, sort of a ball. E.g., Earth could be a significant chakra of our system and a minor chakra for the Milky Way galaxy.
Reason to get your energy flowing:
The energy we are talking about here is prana, or vital force energy. The advantages to a healthy flow of prana are said to incorporate physical health and vitality, balanced emotions, releasing old issues and trauma, heightened intuition, and immediate contact with the divine energy source.
By far, the simplest way to learn what a chakra is, to experience it yourself by meditating on them and their correspondences, like colour, element, sound, area of the human body, and affirmations.
The Physical Chakras: Root, Sacral, and solar plexus – help navigate our sacred bodies through the physical world.
The lower three chakras — muladhara, svadhisthana and manipura — are considered your physical chakras and are liable for your self-image and physical and emotional identity, in conjunction with your relationship to the physical world. The lower three chakras connect through your heart chakra, to the upper three, which are considered your spiritual centres.
MULADHARA: The Root Chakra
The first chakra is our root chakra or base chakra. Its Sanskrit name is Muladhara, meaning base or foundation. This root chakra is the base of your body’s energy. When in balance, you feel safe, secure, purified, and grounded. When practising chakra balancing, it’s essential to start at the rock bottom chakra that needs balancing. Otherwise, our whole energy system could also be misaligned from our true purpose of being here on earth.
SVADHISTHANA: The Sacral Chakra
The second chakra is our sacral chakra. Its Sanskrit name is Svadhisthana, meaning the dwelling place of the self. This sacral chakra is revealed in how you express yourself within the physical world and your ability to move with the flow. It is closely associated with your creativity and sexuality. When in balance, you will be expressive, nurturing, creative, passionate, emotionally stable and able to ‘feel’.
MANIPURA: The Solar Plexus Chakra
The third chakra is our solar plexus chakra. Its Sanskrit name is Manipura, meaning the city of jewels. The solar plexus provides our life-force energy, creating a sacred power centre within us. This chakra is where self-awareness meets willpower. When in balance, you’ll be reliable, strong-willed, powerful, courageous, without dominating others. There should be no ego to guard during a balanced solar plexus chakra.
ANAHATA: The Heart Chakra
The fourth chakra is our heart chakra. Its Sanskrit name is Anahata, meaning to unstruck. Our heart forms the intersection of physical and spiritual Chakras where self and soul are one. By being aware of heart chakra, we have the grand capacity to anticipate what we’d like even before we ‘need’ it, to listen to the sound of the unstruck bell. Unlike the lower three chakras, the heart chakra is infinite because the soul also resides here, making it possible for humans to offer and receive unconditional love. When the heart chakra is in balance, you’ll be trusting, compassionate, loving, forgiving, grateful, and giving.
The Spiritual Chakras: Throat, Third-Eye, and Crown
The higher chakras (5th, 6th, & 7th) coincide mainly with spiritual paths. When these chakras are active and balanced, an individual could seem to possess unique abilities like being psychic, telepathic, or clairvoyant. However, since the wavelength of energy in these chakras is short, they may need some time and more attention to tap into. Once we give extra energy to the lower physical chakras, it becomes exceedingly challenging to tap into these energies in any respect. However, by improving the balance of the lower chakras, we will be able to move higher.
VISHUDDHA: The Throat Chakra
The fifth chakra is our throat chakra. Its Sanskrit name is Vishuddha, meaning purity. The throat chakra is all about communication. Once we communicate from our highest sense of truth, we cleanse our psyche on a physical and mental level. Truth is purifying. When the throat chakra is in balance, you’ll be truthful, helpful, opinionated, calm, an honest listener, an efficient communicator, and proud.
AJNA: the Third Eye Chakra
The sixth chakra is our third eye chakra. The Sanskrit name Ajna, means “command center”. When the third eye chakra is aligned, we are aware of and accept our soul. Here our soul feeds information to our ‘self’, the power to listen to these commands is our intuition. To return into full alignment of self (your physical existence) and soul (your infinite existence), you need to honour your soul’s commands, although they do not pass the tests of your logical mind. When this chakra is in balance, you’ll have a transparent vision, be intuitive, imaginative, and aware.
SAHASRARA: The Crown Chakra
The seventh chakra is our crown chakra. Its Sanskrit name, Sahasrara, means thousand. When this chakra is in balance, you may feel connected to everyone and everything in this universe, recognizing your role in the divine process and feeling connected to the source. The crown chakra, located at the top of the head and opening upward, is our mind’s link to universal consciousness.
Why Do Chakras Get Blocked?
Chakras can get clogged and cause numerous imbalances in our life. Imagine a lovely, flowing stream from a hill down through the forest. Undisturbed, the water will dance from the very top of the mountain to the very bottom. It’ll eventually meet the ocean. This can be water’s natural course, right? But imagine now that because of an extreme storm, the largest and heaviest boulder you’ve ever seen rolls into the stream! It’s now blocking the flow.
Because of this, the flow stops, unable to access any land below the boulder.
This is an ideal analogy for the way the chakras work because the flowing water mirrors the flow of energy through our energy centres. The giant rocks of life that may block our chakras are:
– Work stress
– Financial turmoil
– Poor diet
– Sexual oppression
– Low self-esteem
– Suppressed anger
– Stubbornness & ‘Tunnel Vision’
Why Do Multiple Chakras Get Blocked Together?
It remains clear that when one chakra is out of alignment, it tends to affect the encompassing chakras. Although the chakras can get clogged individually, they can also get clogged in clusters. E.g., Assume that your partner has crossed a line. They’ve crushed your self-esteem with something they said. That clogs up your solar plexus Chakra. Additionally, you’re possibly getting to feel betrayed, less appreciated, and maybe less loving towards them too. This is often a classic example of a Heart Chakra blockage.
That’s two blocks for the worth of one!
So although the chakras are powerful beyond measure – they’re also pretty sensitive to all or any of our human experiences. Thankfully, even though the chakras are often blocked and closed, they can be cleared and opened too.
How to balance or awaken your seven Chakras?
Every chakra rotates at a particular frequency and speed. This frequency and speed are subject to various factors like diet, lifestyle, thought patterns, etc. This leads to issues with the distribution of the pranas.
Imagine if your 60-watt light bulb received a 700 watt or 20-watt electricity supply! Once we balance or awaken the chakras, they return to their regular speed.
Some of the tools to balance Chakras are:
- Nutrition: One of the significant reasons for imbalance in chakras is an imbalance of the five elements in the body. A diet helps to bring balance to the elements of the body.
2.Asanas: Asanas help to stimulate chakras to enhance their functioning and heal themselves.
- Breathing: Breathing helps improve the flow of prana within the body and flush out stale prana.
4. Meditation: Meditation helps to clear the mind and take away negativity and manipulation.
Like your physical health, your spiritual health requires a degree of fitness to make sure your health and wellbeing is optimal. The chakra system is a component of an ancient practice to achieve spiritual wellness and vitality and, intrinsically, is often a simple and accessible method to connect with your spiritual energy. It provides a blueprint for all components of our life. By clearing blockages in our chakra system, we increase our capacity for love, joy and wellbeing. Our natural state of being is one of love and joy, but life’s traumas and programming from our family and culture can inhibit this natural expression. Releasing these old patterns of thinking and behaviour frees us to experience pure energy from the divine source.
Everything we experience tends to get stored in our chakra system, effectively blocking or uplifting energy flow. These blocks may then manifest as emotional or physical issues. Releasing old, stored energy in our chakras can revitalize our zest for all times and our relationships, as we are no longer blocked or stuck in old patterns.
By specializing in a relevant chakra for a specific life issue, we can assist ourselves in developing healthy behaviours and overcoming addictive or self-destructive behaviours.
Many mood disorders and addictive behaviours, like overeating and sex addiction, are often caused by a desire to overcompensate for deficient vital force energy.
Chakra balancing practices can help alleviate the underlying energetic causes of those compulsive drives. For instance, a meditation on our base chakra can help us feel more grounded and secure within the world, while meditation on the solar plexus chakra can increase our confidence. Meditation on the sacral chakra can help us access a natural flow of joy and sensuality that’s healthy and not excessive.
Our vital force aims to empower our body, mind and spirit. Suppose that vital force is getting blocked or wasted on fueling old resentments, traumas and emotional patterns. In that case, we are left with less energy to take a position within the here and now, less energy for the natural flow of abundance, joy, vitality and creativity. A healthy flow of vital force energy flowing through your chakra system will ensure your whole mind, body, and spirit are firing on all cylinders.
We hope this guide helps you to understand the seven chakras a little more closely. There is nothing airy-fairy about it. Its energy and energy is real. We are all energetic beings. Earth is energy. Nature is energy.
Below is the chart for an easy understanding at a glance!
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