Chakras are the centers in our bodies in which energy flows through. The word chakra is a Sanskrit word meaning ‘wheel’, and they are traditionally pictured in paintings as 7 different coloured lotus flowers embedded into a subtle central channel running through the spinal column. Each chakra wheel (vortex of energy) spins at a different speed and is represented by its own unique colour vibration that becomes more and more subtle working upwards through the spine. Chakras also have a particular instinct or function that emanates through every layer of our being, with both a physical, emotional and psychological component which binds them. So chakras literally have their own unique personalities and functions.
1 – Mooladhara – the root chakra
Mooladhara chakra, the first chakra at the very base of the spine for example, is related to the Earth element and therefore provides those qualities of solidity, support and structure for us at every level. The energy of mooladhara provides solidity through the physical body, structure through the skeleton and stability through the legs and feet. The qualities of security, stability and structure are inherent qualities of the earth element. If mooladhara was out of harmony we would experience the feeling of being ungrounded, unbalanced and physically weak. Our thoughts would become confused, our mind unstable and our feelings may fluctuate easily, because the grounding nature and solidity of the earth for some reason had become unbalanced. The legs, feet, spine, bones, adrenals and large intestine, which are the body parts related to mooladhara may develop symptomatic problems and we would probably find it hard to stand still, or walk with natural co-ordination and stability.
2 – Svadhishthana – the creativity and sexual chakra
The Svadhishthana Chakra lies about three centimetres above the Mooladhara chakra between the coccyx and the sacrum. It marks the second stage of human evolvement.
The colour of the Svadhishthana chakra is orange, the colour of fire. This colour symbolises purification, activity, joy, hope and self-confidence, and shows that the energy of the Svadhishthna chakra has become active. Orange is also the colour of sunrise and is an indication of the strength that blossoms from this Chakra once it has been mastered – cheerfulness, faith, self-confidence and vigour. It is also the colour of autumn and sunset, when nature withdraws and consciousness turns inwards. When we look within and concentrate on the Svadhishthana chakra we are able to find the answers to many questions related to our destiny.
3 – Manipura – fire and the power of transformation
The Manipura Chakra is situated behind the navel. When our consciousness has reached the Manipura Chakra we have overcome the negative aspects of Svadhishthana. The Manipura Chakra contains many precious jewels such as the qualities of clarity, self-confidence, bliss, self-assurance, knowledge, wisdom and the ability to make correct decisions.
The colour of the Manipura Chakra is yellow. The animal designated to represent Manipura is the Ram. The corresponding element is Fire, therefore it is also known as the Fire or Sun Centre. The fire element manifests in the body as heat in the Solar Plexus. The Manipura Chakra is the centre of vitality. It controls our energy balance to strengthen and consolidate our health. This Chakra has an effect like a magnet, attracting Prana from the Cosmos.
4 – Anahata – heart chakra
The fourth chakra is at the center of the seven chakras with three below and three above. This is the area where physical and spiritual meet. The fourth chakra, also referred to as the heart chakra, is located at the center of the chest and includes the heart, cardiac plexus, thymus gland, lungs, and breasts. It also rules the lymphatic system. The Sanskrit word for the fourth chakra is Anahata, which means “unstruck” or “unhurt.” The name implies that beneath the hurts and grievances of past experiences lies a pure and spiritual place where no hurt exists.
When your heart chakra is open, you are flowing with love and compassion, you are quick to forgive, and you accept others and yourself. A closed heart chakra can give way to grief, anger, jealousy, fear of betrayal, and hatred toward yourself and others.
5 – Vishuddha – throat chakra
The Throat chakra is the fifth chakra. Located at the center of the neck at the level of the throat, it is the passage of the energy between the lower parts of the body and the head. The function of the Throat chakra is driven by the principle of expression and communication.
Vishuddha is the first of the three spiritual chakras. In the area of the throat, it governs the anatomical regions of the thyroid, parathyroid, jaw, neck, mouth, tongue, and larynx. To be open and aligned in the fifth chakra is to speak, listen, and express yourself from a higher form of communication. Faith and understanding combine the essence of the Vishuddha chakra. The element corresponding to the fifth chakra is ether or space, and the sense is hearing.
6 – Ajna – the third eye
The sixth chakra, called ajna, is located at the third eye (in between and just above eye level). “Ajna” means command.
The ajna chakra is associated with light. As you work with ajna, you may want to see the third eye as access to a cosmic vision, illuminating everything as it is without the filter of your past, your expectations, or your judgment.
This energy center is associated with higher knowledge, the subtler aspects of sight, and intuition. The ajna chakra resides over the eyes and visual perception. We live in a visual culture and being able to see clearly with correct perception yourself and the world will help you manifest your best life.
7 – Sahasrara – crown chakra
The seventh chakra, called sahasrara, is located at the crown of the head. “Sahasrara” means thousand-petaled and represents a thousand-petaled lotus flower.
This energy center is associated with the element of thought, connection to spirit, universal consciousness, enlightenment, wisdom, unity and self-knowledge.
Working with this chakra indicates an interest in a higher purpose and an elevated way of being. You are ready to let go of misunderstandings about who you are and why you are here. This is the gateway to super-consciousness where it is no longer possible to experience yourself as separate from anything or anyone.