There is a lot of talk on social media about a chakra but very few actually understand it in the right manner due to the ambiguity surrounding it. I also see a lot of people who have a desire to learn healing (or want to be healed) but are not completely aware of chakras. This article, I hope, would throw some light on it and introduce you to chakras.
“Chakra” is a Sanskrit (ancient Indian language) word that literally means a “wheel” or a “disk”. A chakra is a swirling energy centre in the body where matter meets etheric realm. It is a spinning energy wheel inside you. There are 7 primary chakras in the body, aligned with the spine. The bottom most chakra, the first one, is at the base of the spine and the 7th chakra, the top most, is at the crown of the head.
Each chakra has a specific colour, has a specific set of characteristics, governs certain areas of the body, has a specific beej mantra (seed syllable), has a specific frequency of sound, has corresponding yoga poses and is associated with selected crystals and gemstones. When a chakra is balanced, a person is healthy and has a high “prana” or life force. If one of the chakra is unbalanced (too open or closed) or even blocked, it leads to diseases or general problems.
The 7 chakras in the body are: Muladhara chakra (Root chakra), Svadhishthana chakra (Sacral chakra), Manipura chakra (Solar Plexus chakra), Anahata chakra (Heart chakra), Vishuddha chakra (Throat chakra), Ajna chakra (Third Eye chakra) and Sahasrāra chakra (Crown chakra). The first 3 chakras are more physical in nature and help us to survive in the physical three dimensional existence. The top 3 chakras are of the spirit and the heart chakra connects the physical with spirit. A brief explanation of the 7 chakras are given below.
Muladhara Chakra or Root Chakra
The Muladhara chakra is located at the base of the spine in the perineum. This is the root chakra that is responsible for stability, security and basic needs. Root chakra, depicted by a four petaled lotus, is red in colour and the beej mantra for Muladhara is LAM (pronounced as lum). This chakra helps to keep you grounded. This chakra guides the basic needs of life like survival, food, water and shelter. Fear arises where there is a threat to our survival (financial or emotional security) and hence a block in this chakra or a closed root chakra may lead to fear. When this chakra is open and balanced, we feel safe, fearless and accomplished. An overactive root chakra may lead to anxiety and could manifest in physical plane as a prostate problem or a problem in the lower organs in the body. Black Tourmaline, Bloodstone, Fire Agate, Black Obsidian are mostly associated with Root chakra.
Svadhishthana Chakra or Sacral Chakra
The sacral chakra is located below the navel along the spine at the centre of the sexual organs. The sacral chakra is responsible for pleasure and is the centre for our emotions. It also motivates us to enjoy our life in a balanced way. It is represented by a six petaled lotus encompassing a crescent shape. The beej mantra for this chakra is VAM (pronounced vum). An overactive Sacral chakra may lead to addictions and indulging too much in worldly pleasures while a blocked Sacral chakra may lead to depression, lack of passion and creativity. Carnelian and coral are usually associated with Sacral chakra.
Manipura Chakra or Solar Plexus Chakra
The Solar Plexus chakra is located just above the belly button and is yellow in colour depicted by a downward pointing triangle inside a lotus with ten petals. The beej mantra of the chakra is RAM (pronounced rum). This chakra is responsible for personal power, identity and confidence. An open and balanced Manipura chakra leads to decisiveness and confidence in a person. A blocked or closed Manipura chakra can lead to low confidence, lack of energy or physical problems in the stomach/liver region. Yellow Sapphire, Citrine and Tiger Eye are usually associated with Manipura chakra.
Anahata Chakra or Heart Chakra
Anahata chakra or the Heart chakra is located in the centre of the chest on the spine. It has a bright green colour and the beej mantra for the heart chakra is YAM (pronounced yum). Anahata chakra is symbolized by 2 intersecting triangles inside a lotus with 12 petals. This chakra governs love, kindness and compassion. A balanced heart chakra will let you feel compassion for all living beings including yourself. A blocked heart chakra can result in lack of kindness and if this chakra is too open, it can cause you to lose your personal boundary. A problem in the chakra could physically manifest as heart or lung problems. Rose Quartz, Malachite and stones in green or pink are usually associated with Heart chakra.
Vishuddha Chakra or Throat Chakra
The throat chakra is located at the pit of the throat and has a light blue colour (turquoise). It is symbolized by a 16 petaled lotus. Since this chakra is associated with the throat, it governs speaking and stands for clarity and truth. Speaking with a balanced throat chakra will be beneficial to those around you. Public speakers are prime example of those with a strong Vishuddha chakra. People with an overactive throat chakra speak too often and are found interrupting others while a blocked chakra leads to a person’s voice being drowned out or struggling to speak the truth. The beej mantra for Vishuddha chakra is HAM (pronounced hum). Aquamarine, Lapis Lazuli and Turquoise are associated with the Throat chakra.
Ajna Chakra or Third Eye Chakra
The Ajna Chakra (pronounced Agya) is referred by some people as the Guru chakra. It is located between the eye brows in the centre of the brain. This chakra is where the Kundalini passes through and Ida and Pingala merge with the Sushmana. In other words, duality ends here. It has a an indigo colour and is symbolized by a lotus with 2 petals. Ajna chakra governs our intuition and psychic abilities. A balanced Ajna chakra lets us received messages from higher realm through intuition, synchronicity or other means. There will be a balance between material and the etheric realm. A balanced Ajna chakra leads to intellectual realization which makes you peaceful from within. In today’s world, most people have a closed Ajna chakra and have poorly developed spiritual connection and intuition. OM is the beej mantra for the Ajna chakra. Amethyst is commonly linked with the Ajna chakra.
Sahasrara Chakra or Crown Chakra
The Crown chakra is the top most chakra at the top of the head through which pure spiritual energy is thought to enter the body. It is a state of pure consciousness where neither the observer nor the observed exist. It has a violet/purple colour but sometimes shown as pure white. “Samadhi” is said to be attained when the Kundalini reaches this point and the person becomes extremely ecstatic after seeing through the veil of life. It is symbolized by a lotus with 1000 petals of different colours. In traditional Usui Reiki, the master places the hand on the crown chakra of the student to initiate him and have the Universal energy begin to flow into the student’s body.
There are several chakras in the body but these 7 chakras are the primary chakras that have to be worked upon energetically. These 7 chakras govern the psychological, physiological and emotional states of a being. If you work upon these 7 chakras, the other chakras in your body will blossom as a consequence.
There are 2 common mistakes people make regarding chakras. Firstly, many assume that chakras are present only in a human body. This is not true. Every living sentient being have energy centers in their body, although a different number of chakras. Secondly, some people live under the illusion that once chakra may be superior to the other. There are no superior or inferior chakras. Physically, there are lower chakras in the body and there are higher chakras in the body. But lower or higher does not signify inferiority or superiority of a chakra. Each chakra has a different characteristic function. The lower chakra ground you and help you live in the material world. The higher chakra connect you to the spiritual realm.
It is also interesting to note that chakras are located in the body where there are massive nerve centers and also where glands are present in the body. Every chakra will have many nerve centers in the surrounding region on the body. Endocrine system has been closely linked with the chakra system by many. For example, the thyroid gland is located where the throat chakra is, the reproductive glands are where the sacral chakra is and the Pineal gland rules the Third Eye chakra.
Chakras are multi dimensional. Hence, like any other multi dimensional system, they can be mastered with meditation and spiritual practice. The lower chakras that are so grounded to the material world can be mastered and transformed to live without the material needs of society. This is how the yogis, who live in the mountains have mastered and transformed their chakras to live without the needs of a man who lives in a city. They have mastered the chakra in order to live without the necessities of the lower chakras. The journey of spirituality goes from the lower chakra to the higher chakra. It starts with the material and goes up to the spiritual realm.