About the Chakras

from the Chopra Centre

What is a Chakra?  by Michelle Fondin

ChakraThe Sanskrit word Chakra literally translates to wheel or disk.  In yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda, this term refers to wheels of energy throughout the body.  There are seven main chakras which align the spine, starting from the base of the spine through to the crown of the head.  To visualize a chakra in the body, imagine a swirling wheel of energy where matter and consciousness meet.  This invisible energy, called Prana, is a vital life force, which keeps us vibrant, healthy, and alive.

The Importance of the Main Chakras in the Body

These swirling wheels of energy correspond to massive nerve centres in the body.  Each of the seven main chakras contains bundles of nerve and major organs as well as our psychological, emotional, and spiritual states of being.  Since everything is moving, it’s essential that our seven main chakras stay open, aligned and fluid.  If there is a blockage, energy cannot flow.  Think of something as simple as your bathtub drain.  I you allow too much hair to go into the drain, the bathtub will back up with water, stagnate and eventually bacterial and told will grow.  So is too with our bodies and the chakras.  A bathtub is simple, it’s physical so the fix is easy.

Keeping a chakra opens a bit more of a challenge, but not so difficult when you have awareness.  Since mind, body, soul, and spirit are intimately connected, awareness of an imbalance in one area will help bring the others back into balance.  take for example, a wife who recently lost her husband.  She develops acute bronchitis, which remains in the chest, and than gets chest pains each time she coughs.  The whole heart chakra is affected in this case.  f she realizes the connection between the loss and the bronchitis, healing will occur much faster if she donors the grieving process and treats that as well as the physical ailment. 

The Chakras of Matter

The first three chakras starting at the base of the spine are chakras of matter.  They are more physical in nature.

First Chakra: The Muladhara is the chakra of stability, security, and our basic needs.  It encompasses the first three vertebrae, the bladder, and the colon.  When this chakra is open, we feel safe and fearless.

Second Chakra: The Svadhisthana chakra is our creativity and sexual center.  It is located above the pubic bone, below the navel, and is responsible for our creative expression.

Third Chakra: The Manipura chakra means lustrous gem and it’s the area from the navel to the breastbone.  The third chakra is ur source of personal power.

The Fourth Chakra: The Connection Between Matter and Spirit

Located at the heart centre, the fourth chakra, Anahata is at the middle of the the seven and unites the lower chakras of matter and the the upper chakras of spirit.  The fourth is also spiritual but serves as a bridge between our body mind, emotions, and spirit.  The heart chakra is our source of love and connection.

When we work through our physical chakras, or the first three, we can open the spiritual chakras more fully.

The Chakras of Spirit

Fifth Chakra: The Vishuddha chakra is the fifth chakra, located in the area of the throat.  This is our source of verbal expression and the ability to speak our highest truth.  The fifth chakra includes the neck, thyroid, and parathyroid glands,m jaw, mouth, and tongue.

Sixth Chakra: The Ajna chakra is located in-between the eyebrows.  It is also referred to as the “third Eye” chakra.  Ajna is our centre of intuition. We all have a sense of intuition but we may not listen to it or heed its warnings.  Focus on opening the sixth chakra will help you hone this ability. 

Seventh Chakra: The Sahajuwara chakra or the “thousand petal lotus” chakra is located at the crown of the Head.  This is the chakra of enlightenment and spiritual connection to our higher selves, others and ultimately, to the divine.  It is located at the crown of the head.

Clue to Aligning the Chakras

Awareness to which of your chakras are out of balance is key to aligning them.  Our bodies are in constant flux between balance and imbalance.  Unless you have an apparent problem in one area of the body, imbalances can be difficult to detect.  The being said, it’s good to bring awareness to our body/mind and start to learn signals and clues.

For example, frequent constipation can indicate a blockage in the first chakra.  A recurring ore throat eaves clues to a blocked fifth chakra.  Frequent headaches around the area of the forehead may mean your sixth chakra tis blocked.