Chakras are energy centers in the body that play an important role in our physical, mental, and spiritual wellbeing. Understanding this mind-body energy system is essential for becoming the most vibrant, healthy, and radiant version of yourself.
The Sanskrit word Chakra literally translates to “wheel” or “disk.” In yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda, this term refers to wheels of energy throughout the body. To visualize a chakra in the body, imagine a swirling wheel of life-giving energy – the vital force that animates us and all living things.
Since everything in the mind-body energy system is moving, it’s essential that your seven main chakras stay open, aligned, and fluid. If there’s a blockage, the flow of energy is constricted – like water forced to run through a narrow pipe. So it is too with our bodies and the chakras. The key to unblock, move, and transform your energy – so that you can reach your highest mental, physical, and spiritual potential – is simple: awareness.
Heal the chakra that influences physical identity, stability, and sense of safety.
RELEASE YOUR FEARS
Located at the base of the spine, the pelvic floor, and the first three vertebrae, the root chakra or Muladhara is responsible for your sense of safety and security on this earthly journey.
Balancing the root chakra creates the solid foundation for opening the entire chakra system. Imagine that you’re laying the foundation for a house in which you’re going to live for a long time. A solid foundation embedded in firm soil will provide the stability you need to create a home filled with joy for years to come.
The first chakra is comprised of whatever grounds you to stability in your life. This includes your basic needs such as food, water, shelter, and safety, as well as your more emotional needs such as letting go of fear. When these needs are met, you feel grounded and safe, and tend to worry less day to day.
IMBALANCES IN THE ROOT CHAKRA
If there is an imbalance in the root chakra, you may experience anxiety disorders, unfounded fears, or nightmares. Physical imbalances can manifest as problems in the colon, with the bladder, with elimination, or with lower back, leg, or feet issues. In men, prostate problems might occur. Eating disorders may also be a sign of a root chakra imbalance.
THE SACRAL CHAKRA
Heal the chakra that influences emotional identity, creativity, and desire.
AWAKEN YOUR CREATIVIT
The second chakra, Svadhisthana, is also known as the creativity and sexual chakra. It is located above the pubic bone – below the navel – and encompasses the genital region and the hypogastric plexus.
The focus of the sacral chakra is creativity. As humans, it is part of our nature to create. When we use our creative energy – whether it is through cooking, baking, gardening, procreating, or even finding a new solution to an old problem – we are opening our second chakra. A balanced sacral chakra leads to feelings of wellness, abundance, pleasure, and joy.
IMBALANCES IN THE SACRAL CHAKRA
When this chakra is out of balance, you may experience emotional instability, creative blocks, fear of change, sexual dysfunction, depression, or addictions.
THE SOLAR PLEXUS CHAKRA
Heal the chakra that influences ego identity, personal power, and ambition.
DISCOVER YOUR POWER
The third chakra is called Manipura, which means “lustrous gem.” Located around the navel in the area of the solar plexus and up to the breastbone, it is a source of personal power and governs self-esteem, warrior energy, and the power of transformation. The Manipura chakra also controls metabolism and digestion.
When you feel self-confident, have a strong sense of purpose, and are self-motivated, your third chakra is open and healthy.
Having clear goals, desires, and intentions allows you to move forward and achieve them. Each small step you take while honoring the larger intention helps to strengthen your third chakra. You can harness the power of Manipura to assert your will in a healthy way and achieve any goal you set out to accomplish
IMBALANCES IN THE SOLAR PLEXUS CHAKR
If your third chakra is out of balance, you can suffer from low self-esteem, have difficulty making decisions, and may have anger or control issues. The digestive fire, called Agni, is also present in the third chakra – weak digestion may indicate a blockage.
THE HEART CHAKRA
Heal the chakra that influences social identity, love, and relationships.
OPEN YOURSELF TO LOVE
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 pains 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.
IMBALANCES IN THE HEART CHAKRA
A closed heart chakra can give way to grief, anger, jealousy, fear of betrayal, and hatred toward yourself and others. Physical imbalances may manifest as heart conditions, respiratory problems, or upper-back pain.
THE THROAT CHAKRA
Heal the chakra that influences self-expression, communication, and integrity.
SPEAK YOUR INNER TRUT
In the area of the throat, the fifth chakra, or Vishuddha, 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.
Work on the lower chakras will help prepare you for this level of communication. For example, when you align the first and second chakras, it helps with overcoming fear.
Opening the third chakra helps you to feel your personal power and have the confidence to express yourself. Knowing what’s in your heart comes when you align the fourth chakra. Then, when verbalizing your needs, desires, and opinions, you’re better able to determine how to be truthful to yourself and others.
IMBALANCES IN THE THROAT CHAKRA
If your throat chakra is out of balance, this may manifest as difficulty communicating and expressing your feelings, indecision, and mood swings. Thyroid problems, a sore throat or stiff neck, and tooth and gum issues may also be a sign of fifth chakra imbalance.
THE THIRD EYE CHAKRA
Heal the chakra that influences self-reflection, intuition, and clarity of sight.
TRUST YOUR INTUITION
The sixth chakra, Ajna, is in the area of the third eye, which is found in the space between the eyebrows. It encompasses the pituitary gland, eyes, head, and lower part of the brain. A spiritual chakra which means “beyond wisdom,” this is your center of intuition. Ajna leads you to an inner knowledge that will guide you if you let it. An open sixth chakra can enable expanded imagination, visualization, clairvoyance, telepathy, and lucid dreaming
Your intuition is like a “sixth sense” that grows stronger as you open your third eye, something you can look to for guidance in making the right decisions. With a blocked sixth chakra, only the mind, intellect, and ego are used in the decision-making process. When the third eye is open, however, the soul becomes involved as well. Pay attention to a hunch or a subtle feeling of moving forward or holding back. If you are conflicted, ask for your sense of intuition to be opened in order to help you make the right choice.
IMBALANCES IN THE THIRD EYE CHAKRA
If there is an imbalance in the sixth chakra you may experience poor intuition, lack of concentration, impaired judgment, confusion, or depression. Physical imbalances may manifest as headaches, trouble sleeping, or nightmares.
THE CROWN CHAKRA
Heal the chakra that influences self-knowledge, spirituality, and connection to the divine.
CONNECT TO THE DIVINE
The seventh chakra, Sahaswara, is referred to as the thousand-petal lotus chakra. Of the seven main chakras, this one is highest on the body, located at the crown of the head. Sahaswara is our source of enlightenment and spiritual connection to our higher selves, to every being on the planet, and ultimately to the divine energy that creates everything in the universe.
While many of us have the demands of daily living and the busy minds that accompany these demands, reaching enlightenment may not be as far off as it appears.
Practicing meditation, prayer, or daily silence are disciplines that lead to increased moments of spiritual connection. Once you’ve established a daily practice of these activities that connect you to universal consciousness, you will see expansion of spiritual awareness in your outer world. You will begin to experience unconditional love on a consistent basis. You will be more compassionate, kind, and forgiving, and show more humility. Life will become less about you and more about serving others because when you serve others, you are serving yourself.
IMBALANCES IN THE CROWN CHAKRA
A closed crown chakra can lead to lack of inspiration, aimlessness, feelings of loneliness, excessive materialism, lack of spiritual connections, and difficulty meditating. Physical imbalances may manifest as exhaustion, sensitivity to light and sounds, poor sleep habits, or migraines and tension headaches.