My quest for wellness has taken me on a long journey. With life being as busy and hectic as it is, I wanted more for myself and to understand myself better so that I could be better for others. When I stumbled across the seven of them, I started to realize there is more to chakra meanings of “being” than I initially thought.
I am energy, and that energy plays a vital role in who I am and how my body communicated with my mind. To achieve complete and holistic wellbeing, I needed to keep attuned to what is my chakra and keep them aligned.
For you to truly understand yourself through yoga poses or meditation, you should also understand the Chakras and what roles they play in who you are and how you feel.
What is the Purpose of the Chakras ?
- What Is Chakra And How Does It Work?
- Contrast With Classical Yoga
- Classical Traditions
- The Chakras of Matter, Matter And Spirit And Spirit
- Chakra Of Matter
- The Three Chakras Of Matter
The Fourth Chakra: The Connection Between Matter And Spirit
- The Three Chakras Of Spirit
- The Chakra System
- The Seven Chakras
- How To Align Your Chakras
- Reception And Similar Theories In The West
What is Chakra And How Does It Work?
Chakra symbols were derived from theories of the esoteric medieval era. These theories are on how human body has two main dimensions. These dimensions are the body and the subconscious mind. The subconscious mind is comprised of any part of you that is non-physical such as your emotions. The non-physical body is often referred to as the subtle body.
The subtle body is energy, whereas the body is a mass.
How your mind interacts with your body is a mutual communication between the two. The subtle body is comprised of energy centers that are connected by nodes of mental energy. This energy center is called Chakra.
There is believed to be seven different energy centers within us.
Contrast With Classical Yoga
Though Chakra has been critical to esoteric traditions, it doesn’t relate to today’s yoga directly. However, the goals of classical yoga poses and the quest to spiritual liberation is attained differently with Chakra being peripheral to it.
Classical eastern traditions are described in the Chakra context. Since the body and psyche-mind reality work parallel with each other, it is an invisible force that is very real. The idea of “life energy” has a broad chakra definition that goes from breathing in and out to breathing, your mind, emotions, and sexual energies.
Each of these energies is the “essence” of humanity, and they leave the body when you die.
All of these “life energies” are believed to be attainable. You can achieve this while you are awake as it is thought to be important for your body and mind to be healthy. The idea of Chakra, according to other theories, is that they are closely related to your emotions.
Many of the esoteric traditions stemmed from Hinduism and mentioned Chakras through numbers and arrangements. It is through this tradition that the classical system of seven is most common. The seven-part system is vital to Hatha yoga.
The Hindu tantra teaches different Chakra theories. Primarily, the entire Chakra method was developed through the goddess tradition of Hinduism called Shaktism. The Chakra method, coupled with yantras, mandala, and kundalini yoga practice, is what is important.
What this means is the energy centers inside you is part of the rituals of meditation that is called Laya yoga. However, beyond Shakta, there are many other sub-traditions.
Put, you activate the Chakras to stimulate your spiritual development faster.
The esoteric traditions of Buddhism teach four Chakras. These Chakras are known to be naval, heart, throat, and crown. However, these Chakras grew in Tibetan Buddhism and increased the subtlety to include gross self, subtle self, casual self, and non-dual self. However, depending on the meditation technique you use, they range from three to six Chakras.
The system of five Chakras is shared among the Mother Class of Tantras. What they are is Basal Chakra, Abdominal, Heart, Throat Chakra, and Crown Chakra. Chakra is key to Tibetan Buddhism and is a huge part of Tantric Thinking. The key here is to achieve organic harmony of your consciousness wisdom and complete love.
The tantric process is to help you achieve a level of transformation that frees you from the negativity that surrounds you.
Qigong is very similar to the esoteric energy system. However, it involves the circulation of your life-energy. Though similar to the Hindu Prana, they this on also includes your primordial essence and your spirit energy.
How it works is that this energy rises along the base of your spine and comes back down to your torso. Through this process, your life-energy goes through various chakra points that help to refine it. The aspects of refinement are known as dantian. Dantian plays a role that is similar to Chakra. Each Dantian has a different location in your body.
Spirituality in the Malay Archipelago tradition borrows a lot of its concepts from Hindu-Buddhism. In Malaysia and Indonesian metaphysical theories, your Chakras rotate outwards along diagonal lines. Your defensive energy goes towards the center line, and your offensive energy moves inward from the outer regions of your body. This applies to meditation and energy healing as well as martial arts.
Silat aims to create harmony between your movement with the Chakras to increase your power and effectiveness of any movements.
What Is The Purpose of Chakras?
Since the word Chakra translates to the wheel, in yoga, meditation or Ayurveda refers to the wheels of energy throughout the body. You need to visualize Chakra in your body as wheels of energy that is swirling around where your physical being meets your consciousness. This life force is vital because it is what keeps us healthy and alive.
These Chakras are located in different places within your body. Those places are where your energy comes from along with your lifeforce. The life force of Chakra is called Prana. All seven Chakras start at the base of the spine , and they travel around until the top of your head. The first three of these Chakras is known as the Chakra of Matter.
The Three Chakras of Matter:
This Chakra is at the base of the spine and helps you with balance, sense of security, and your basic needs. Muladhara is at the first three vertebrae of your spine, your bladder, and your colon. When this Chakra is activated, you feel safe and confident.
This Chakra is located above our pubic bone and is all about creativity. Essentially, it is our creative and sexual center.
Located from our navel to our breastbones, this Chakra is the source of inner strength. If any of these Chakras are closed, you aren’t at your best self.
The Fourth Chakra: The Connection Between Matter and Spirit
The fourth Chakra is known as the Heart Chakra, and it is one of the most important of all Chakras. As this is the middle Chakra, it is only fitting that is considered the bridge. What it connects is our physical bodies along with the emotional and mental states of our regular human body with our spiritual self that is our spiritual connection, our inner knowing and our divine expression of our talents and abilities.
This Chakra is often considered your soul. This connection between matter and spirit is what helps you achieve your higher self.
The Three Chakras of Spirit:
Visudha (Throat Chakra)
This Chakra is located at our throats, and it is often connected to mantra and speech. What this Chakra relates to is our unique expressions of self and our ability to communicate with honesty. When this Throat Chakra is balanced, we can express ourselves honestly. You are able to speak your truth via this chakra.
This third Chakra is considered to be the third eye. What is it is that the chakra is associated with is your sight and seeing. Ajna is the energies of intuition and our psychic abilities which are in direct relations with this Chakra. The complete balance of this Chakra allows you to use your intuition and visualize what you want for the future.
Where this Chakra is located at your crown. This chakra is associated with is our spiritual enlightenment. As the highest energy in your being, Sahasrara helps to bring you wisdom and spiritual and personal growth from within yourself. When this Chakra is balanced, you can achieve a higher state of consciousness and enlightenment.
What Are Chakras For Beginners?
The most common and understood Chakra system is the seven Chakras that are comprised of the Chakras of Matter, and the Chakras of Spirit along with the bridge that connects them is the heart Chakra.
The 7 Chakras and their meanings are below and are vertically arranged along your axis channels.
7 Chakras Meanings:
What is the Root Chakra or Muladhara?
The Root Chakra is the foundation of all other Chakras and is located at the bottom of your spine. When you feel anxiety, panic, or the feeling of threatening, the Root Chakra is blocked. Having this Root Chakra aligned is vital for pursuing your life goals.
What is the Sacral Chakra or Svadhishthana?
The Sacral Chakra is located in the middle of your abdomen and is approximately two inches below your belly button. This Sacral Chakra is your creative energy. The emotional issues that are derived from this is that the sacral Chakra is blocked . You will feel boredom, uninspired, and listless. You may even experience a low sex drive and feel resistant to any changes in life. Issues with this Sacral Chakra can result in addictions or eating issues.
What is Solar Plexus Chakra or Manipura?
Your entire self-esteem, individualism, and determination stem from the solar plexus Chakra. Located in the stomach area near the top of your abdomen, the solar plexus Chakra is often called the Chakra of personal power. Emotional issues that stem from the solar plexus Chakra is that you will lack confidence or have insecurity in a particular area. When all is right with the solar plexus Chakra, your path is clear and straight ahead.
What is the Heart Chakra or Anahata?
This Chakra is located directly above your heart and is directly connected to your ability to show empathy, love, and compassion. Considered the bridge between the spirit and the physical self, a balanced Heart Chakra allows you to be a kinder individual. Additionally, you will be able to reap the benefits of inner peace. Emotional issues that stem from this Chakra are that you will struggle to relate to people. It can also result in inpatients. You may also find it hard to trust or experience real peace.
The Throat Chakra or Vishuddha
Located at the middle of your throat, this throat Chakra regulates your sense of self-expression. Ultimately, this Chakra helps you to convey your true self to the world. Emotional honesty, understanding, and owning your needs along with your directness are all associated with this Chakra. Emotional issues that arise from this Chakra not being as it should is that you cannot convey yourself. You find it hard to say what is on your mind and feel like you are caught in a vortexes of energy .
What is the Third Eye Chakra or Ajna?
The Third Chakra is a powerful source of energy. This Chakra helps to determine your intuition, your ability to see the larger picture, and how you are aligned with the Universe. The Third Eye is located at the center of your brow. The emotional issues may be that you struggle with your faith. You may feel that there is little point in your life or what you are doing is insignificant. Finally, you may have difficulty making a decision.
The Crown Chakra or Sahasrara
The highest of the Chakra symbols, this one is what determines your spiritual connection. Vital for helping you create the life you love and attaining full peace, this Chakra located at the top of your head. Emotional issues that are derived from this Chakra not being aligned is depression, lack of spirituality or direction, and an inability to see the beauty that surrounds you. You may even lack motivation. You can learn more about the seven Chakras through this video where they will be explained in more depth.
Chakra Colors :How to Balance Them
As you may have already learned, it is essential that you keep your Chakras aligned. Ultimately you want all your Chakras open and in perfect alignment and here is how to achieve that.
You start at your Root Chakra and shut your eyes. Imagine your energy swirling in red. Focus on that then move to your next Chakra or the Sacral Chakra. You then want to imagine the energy of this Chakra moving around in yellow. Again, focus for a few minutes then move onto the next Chakra.
Note: It is vital that your breath is slow and deliberate during this meditation.
At the next Chakra, the Solar Plexus Chakra, you are going to imagine your energy as yellow. Focus on this Chakra for a few minutes before moving onto the Heart Chakra. This Chakra is green in color, and once you are done focusing here, you move to the next, which will resonate in a beautiful blue color. Once you finish with the Throat Chakra, you move to the brow Chakra called the Third Eye. This Chakra is very important and should be envisioned in an indigo color.
Finally, you focus on your Crown Chakra. You envision this Chakra at the top of your head like a ball of energy that is floating towards the sky.
During this process, your body and mind should be in a relaxed state. Additionally, you should be feeling positive. As your Chakras become aligned, you will feel soothing energy throughout your body that is felt like a Tingle. This Tingle is called the Prana life force.
Reception and Similar Theories in the West
Through the translation of two Indian texts, the theory of the seven Chakras was introduced in the West. Derived from a book called “The Serpent Power” by Arthur Avalon, the western view of Chakras was born in 1918.
This is a separate and contemplative movement that was developed in the Eastern Orthodox Church. Hesychasm is a form of Christian meditation. The emphasis of this theory is placed upon the heart area. Essentially, Hesychasm is a place you can concentrate on during prayer.
The function of Chakras in the New Age is known as the thoughts and experiences you have had in life are filtered through the Chakras. Each Chakra is color-coded and is associated with various physiological functions.
The Chakras are a vital component of the interactions between the body and your emotional and mental body. The idea of the Chakras is to use this energy to help you achieve a holistic balance between your physical, mental, and emotional health.
The importance and placement of the Chakras are known to exist in the psyche. However, it is believed that the Chakras have a physical element as part of the endocrine system. The Chakras are understood to be the metaphysical counterpart to your endocrine glands. There have also been links between the lower six Chakras to specific nerves along the spinal cord and associated glands. Additionally, specifically, Ajna is known to be a direct part of the endocrine system.
Chakras Healing and Beyond
The concept of the seven Chakras can be difficult to understand at first. However, once you know the role they play in the vitality of your holistic self, you will see how much it makes sense. Working towards properly aligning your seven Chakras is the key to living a full and vital life. In contrast, when the Chakras are not aligned, you then suffer from various emotional or physical ailments.
Understanding my Chakras and focusing on aligning them through meditation and intense concentration has helped me to achieve a more peaceful and vital life. You can accomplish that too.