Saturday, February 10, 2007

Chakras Primer


BAD! Kitty Art Studio
(above) Chakras in the sky collage
by: HMBT 2006
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What am I doing today? I am taking a day to heal...I have had the flu for the past two days...feeling like crap and pushing myself to go beyond the comfort zone to keep working, and also to avoid some internal stuff that I have been avoiding (my almost 18 year old son's "issues")...which made me feel worse and the art showed the stress (had to ditch a whole canvas and start over...ARGH!). So today, I woke up and thought maybe I should take a day off and do my Yoga, check in with my chakras, get aligned find my center, courage...and heal myself for next weeks push. I pulled out some of my books and CD's and such and went out to the back porch as the sun rose and got busy...relaxing and checking in with myself. This is some of the stuff I thought I would share, because I know many of you out there push beyond sometimes too...and maybe you might like to know how to push the "reset" button too. So...


Here is a simple primer on the chakras:



Root Chakra (aka Muladhara).


Color: Red


Element: Earth.


Located at the base of the spine (tailbone), this chakra helps you root down in reality, says Porter. "It gives us a sense of identity and stability. When it's in balance you are in your body, you're present and mindful." Rooting down also gives you more flexibility; this is apparent in yoga. Your root also effects all the other energy points, so if it's out of whack then all of you is affected.
If there is an imbalance or blockage, you'll have a hard time connecting to reality and making decisions. You'll likely be spacey.


Dancing is very good to get grounded. In the summer, go barefoot. And you can always hug a tree.



Second Chakra (aka Svadhishthana, which means sweetness)


Color: Orange


Element: Water


Located in your abdomen area near your genitals and womb, this chakra is associated with receptivity, nurturing, creativity and sexuality. When your second chakra is unbalanced it's hard to feel pleasure and sex is challenging. "Basically you're cut off from your emotions. It's hard to trust and to receive." Deep psychological and spiritual work is in order along with some deep soul-searching. Breathing techniques such as breath of fire, a cleansing & energizing breath, powered by abdominal contractions, should help in this area.



Third Chakra (Manipura which means lustrous gem)


Color: Yellow


Element: Fire


This energy wheel is located between your navel and solar plexus. This is where we develop a healthy sense of ego and personal identity. When your third chakra is balanced you are able to set boundaries, stand up for your self and take action. When it's unbalanced you don't have a clear sense of self. You're mired in indecision and you aren't able to bring things into fruition. You also let people walk all over you like a welcome mat. Certain postures (Yoga) such as supported bridge, abdominal toning and Warrior poses to move will and purpose and to build chi.



Heart Chakra (Anahata meaning unstuck)


Color: Green


Element: Air


Ah, the heart, it is the antidote to so many things. This energy center, which is situated in the center of your chest, represents your ability to love and show compassion to yourself and to others. When balanced you are able to be honest. You can admit your own flaws and shortcomings with softness. This is not a kumbayah kind of love but a deep sincere responsible unconditional love. "What I mean by that is, let's say someone is crying, you don't tell them 'come on get over it, just be happy.' You say, 'ok you're crying, what can I do?' Your ability to deal with your own emotions (the good, the bad and the ugly) allows you to easily understand another's."


This is the chakra which bridges the three lower chakras to the upper ones. Some signs that the heart chakra is overpowering your life can include co-dependency, possessiveness, jealousy, heart disease, and high blood pressure. For these symptoms, forward bends are the best antidote, because they are grounding and foster introspection. While people with deficient heart chakras need to open to receive love more fully, those with excessive heart chakras find healing by slowing down to discover inside themselves the nourishment they have been seeking from others.
Fifth Chakra (Vissudha meaning purification)


Color: Cerulean


Element: Ether/Sound


This chakra is located in your throat and neck area. It's all about communication and speaking your truth. It links the mind with the body and allow you to be centered, artistic and live in the present. If you don't let your voice be heard you can run into a host of problems from neck pains to thyroid issues. Too much energy here and you'll be arrogant, talk too much and be self-righteous (yuck). Too little energy and you'll be timid, unreliable, weak and manipulative (double yuck).
Moving with sound, letting sound move the body, releasing through sound are all excellent ways to get energy to flow through this area. Chanting OM and sighing is also beneficial. As for yoga poses... shoulder stance, plow and neck stretches.


Sixth Chakra (Ajna)


Color: Indigo Blue


Element: Light


This is the center of internal seeing; the all-knowing Third Eye located between your brows. It is the center of psychic powers and higher intuition. Here is where you receive guidance and tune into your higher self. When this chakra is working optimally, you trust your instincts, follow your intuition and you are not attached to material things.
When this chakra is deficient of energy, you are non-assertive, oversensitive to the feelings of others an unable to distinguish between your ego and higher self.
Visualizations and imagining energy moving are good ways to stimulate this chakra. Recommended poses include bridge pose, seated straight leg and shoulder stand.



Seventh Chakra (Sahasrara).


Color: White or Violet


Element: Consciousness


This chakra, which is situated at the crown of your head, is the energy center associated with divine purpose and destiny -- the seat of higher wisdom. When in alignment, your exterior and interior life is in harmony; you are no longer separated from the object of your perception. In essence, you are at one with the universe and totally aware of your true self. The issues of this energy wheel are devotion, inspiration, selflessness, and spiritual understanding. This is where body and spirit fuse. When this chakra is unbalanced or blocked, chances are you'll feel a little off, and cut off from the divine. Rather than feeling as one, you feel like many little pieces scattered all over the floor.
To balance this chakra, cultivate an awareness of the body, awareness of awareness and a releasing of attachment.


An affirmation associated with this chakra is: May I have a clear and open connection with source energy (spirit), and live in the present moment. Beneficial poses include head stand, mountain pose and tree.


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Overall, yoga, which unites body, mind and spirit, is an excellent way to keep the energy flowing and the chakras in check. I practice it daily...but sometimes I find that I do the motions but lose my internal "moment" and it's good for the body but well...it does nothing for the brain if you are not really "with" yourself. I feel better in tune with myself now...and ready to relax a little today and let my body take care of the nasty bug it has....I hope you all have a wonderful Saturday.


Be well and share your love!


Heather




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3 comments:

Pavel said...

Boy, that was very educational. I must admit at being very ignorant when it comes to those eastern philosophical systems so this was interesting!

Take good care of yourself and I hope you'll feel better real soon.

HMBT said...

Thank you Pavel, I appreciate you and your kindness. I am feeling a little better, but this flu is kicking my butt!
Love to you and yours,
Heather

Cynthia said...

I am very into this! I had actually thought about doing an art series based on the chakras, but don't know enough about it.