Heart, You

The Chakras

In my recent blog, Healing Energy, I discussed my fascination with life force energy and how beneficial it is in my coaching practice.  One thing I am finding with Reiki is an ability to work energetically with the chakras.  Chakras (Sanskrit for wheel or disk) are energy centers in the body.

Just as we have various systems that monitor and regulate our physiology, we also have systems for the non-physical.  Where our circulatory, respiratory, and digestive systems maintain our blood, oxygen and nutrients, there are a variety of systems that work with our subtle energy.

Acupuncture, for instance, is a traditional Chinese medicine that dates back thousands of years and taps into this energy system.  Points on the surface of the skin are activated and connected to organs and muscles throughout the body via meridians, energy pathways.  There is a network of meridians running through our bodies, just like blood vessels.

Yogic philosophy and eastern traditions explain a subtle energy system through chakras and nadis.  Much like the major organs in the body, there are also major energy centers.  Although there are many minor chakras, there are seven major chakras that run along the core of the body from the crown of the head to the base of the spine.  They are spinning vortexes of subtle energy flow, each hovering over a different nerve plexus and associated with an endocrine gland.  Energy is received, stored, transmuted, and expressed through the chakras.  The energy is transported through nadis, which are energy channels.  Eastern traditions teach that each one is a power center responsible for different aspects of our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual being.

Each chakra vibrates at a different frequency.  The lower chakras, which correspond to the physical world, are a little slower and denser than the upper chakras, which correspond to the spiritual world.  Each chakra is also associated with a color of the rainbow spectrum.  Some have said that we are like a prism; as light enters our energy system, the chakras will break up that energy and reflect the various colors.

There are many philosophies and opinions regarding the chakras.  Although there are differences on the purpose, description and aspects of each chakra, there are overarching similarities.  There are healers and medical intuits, for instance, who can “see” a person’s energy, and report that each chakra can be a rainbow of colors in itself.

Over the years, I have gathered information from many sources, and below is a general framework on the tendencies of each chakra.  They are as follows:

1st Chakra: Root Chakra
Color: Red
Location: Base of tailbone
Endocrine Gland: Adrenals
Element: Earth
Relationship: With tribe
Description: Physicality, material world, family, survival, belonging, grounding

2nd Chakra: Sacral Chakra
Color: Orange
Location: Below navel
Endocrine Gland: Gonads
Element: Water
Relationship: With another
Description: Emotion center, empathy, creativity, sexuality and reproduction, physical desire, money, work

3rd Chakra: Solar Plexus
Color: Yellow
Location: Below notch of ribs
Endocrine Gland: Pancreas
Element: Fire
Relationship: With self
Description: Personal power, volition, self-esteem, motivation, metabolism

4th Chakra: Heart Chakra
Color: Green
Location: Center of chest
Endocrine Gland: Thymus
Element: Air
Relationship: With unconditional love
Description: Communion, unity, love, forgiveness, compassion

5th Chakra: Throat Chakra
Color: Blue
Location: Notch of neck
Endocrine Gland: Thyroid
Element: Ether (Sound)
Relationship: With Divine will
Description: Will, self-expression, autonomy, self-awareness, clear communication

6th Chakra: Third Eye Chakra
Color: Indigo (or violet)
Location: Center of head
Endocrine Gland: Pituitary
Element: Ether (Light)
Relationship: With Truth
Description: Beliefs and thought-forms, mind, intuition, wisdom, insight, clear vision

7th Chakra: Crown Chakra
Color: Violet (or white)
Location: Top of head
Endocrine Gland: Pineal
Element: Ether (Thought)
Relationship: With time
Description: Spiritual connection with divine, universal intelligence, inspiration, being in the present moment

Challenge for the week:  Feel your chakras!

We often spend our days stuck in our heads.  Thinking about our “to do” list, our relationships, our homes, our jobs, what this person did, what that person said…there is a constant chatter that goes on in our minds.  It’s rare that we check in with our bodies and how we’re truly feeling…until something hits us…a backache, headache, hunger, a cold, you name it.

This chakra meditation can be a great exercise to introduce into your day:

Sit quietly, either close your eyes or drop your gaze so the lids are heavy.  Take a few deep, relaxing belly breaths, inhaling through your nose, and exhaling through your mouth with a sigh, or as if you were blowing out through a straw.  Then return to a natural breath, breathing softly in and out through your nose.

Starting with the root chakra, place your attention on the base of your spine and your sitting bones in the chair.  Feel grounded in your seat.  Notice any sensations.  Imagine a deep ruby red light emanating from inside your root chakra.

Move your attention up your core to the area just below your belly button.  This is your sacral chakra.  Notice any sensations in this area.  Imagine an orange light emanating from inside this chakra.

Continue to move your attention up through each chakra.  Spend a few moments feeling any sensations in your body in that area.  Then imagine a bright, healing light radiating from that place: solar plexus, a warm lemon yellow; the heart center, an emerald green (or pink, if that feels more appropriate); the throat center, a vivid sky blue; the third eye, a deep indigo/violet; and then the crown chakra at the top of the head, a bright violet or white light.  Imagine all of the chakras glowing and aligned.

Then visualize a sparkly white or gold light surrounding you, like an eggshell, sealing in this vibrant, healing energy.  Bring your awareness back to your breath, and gently open your eyes.

The more you practice this meditation, the more you will start to connect with your body and your chakras.  If you are experiencing pain or discomfort in any area, work to unblock that chakra.  Imagine that bright light emanating from the chakra is sending out love and healing energy.  You can refer to the chakra descriptions above to help you investigate the root of the problem.

Have a great week!  Please feel free to leave any comments or questions below.

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