An Introduction To The Chakras
In ancient Indian philosophy, Chakras are sacred energy centers in the body, or our “wheels of life” as Anodea Judith refers to them in her book. There are seven main Chakras that run the length of the spine, from the tailbone to the space two inches above the crown of the head.
Each wheel or energy center represents a part of us, and through their study and application, the chakras offer a dynamic and systematic approach to physical and emotional health, and spiritual growth.
Visualize 7 wheels along your spine, constantly spinning, interacting with each other; as one switches directions or picks up speed, another is necessarily impacted. Life is like this, many things at play at once, always a work in progress. To keep our energy centers and areas of life in balance takes continuous effort and finding techniques that work for you.
One of our favorite ways to balance the chakras is incorporating crystals into meditation, as they are a powerful tool gifted from Mother Earth to evoke specific energies.
Let’s dive in.
The Seven Main Chakras
The root chakra is located at the base of the spine and is associated with all earthly things such as our body, health and survival; matter in its densest form. Our bodies respond to the force of earth’s gravitational pull to keep us rooted here physically, and the health of this chakra is associated with one’s ability to be self sufficient.
As the name suggests, the sacral chakra is connected to our womb, sex organs and fluidity in body, mind, and action. To focus on the sacral area is to pay attention to and nurture our own emotions while discerning them from others’ emotions, and to understand what brings us joy and pleasure. As the womb center, svadhisthana is the powerful source of creation and movement. The health of this chakra lies in our ability to know and access our personal flow state.
Solar Plexus (Manipura)
Our solar plexus, located at the gut center of the body, is responsible for our sense of inner strength and personal will. It’s our inner fire. Manipura is strengthened through self-imposed disciplines, which in turn gives us a realistic understanding of our skills, talents and limitations. A healthy manipura inspires integrity and confidence. When we are strong at our core, we are able to respond to whatever life brings without getting tossed off center.
The center of life itself, the heart is our connection to unconditional love, compassion and empathy for all beings. The heart is represented by the element of air and specifically its ability to expand and disperse evenly throughout whatever space it occupies. Your heart is the bridge between the earthly lower chakras and the ethereal upper chakras and its health gives us the means to transcend the ego and open our boundaries for love.
As you may assume, the throat is the space in charge of our communication, or how we express outwardly what we are experiencing internally, as well as understanding information from the outside world. Finding balance in this chakra asks us to be impeccable with our word, and confident in the value of what we have to offer and say.
Third Eye (Ajna)
Ajna is our third, non-human, all-seeing eye that helps us to perceive life with clarity and self awareness. When working with the third eye, we transcend our normal abilities to see, bringing added insight to situations and heightened access to intuition to read between the lines.
In contrast to the root, which is matter in its densest form, the crown chakra is the mind and mental awareness, or pure unmanifest consciousness. The crown is said to be the seat of the soul, and when activated, gives access to the limitless, dimensionless, timeless qualities of the universe.