Chakras and Intentional Living
What do you know about chakras?
Maybe you’ve heard one of your girlfriends mention it or maybe you’re that girlfriend who knows exactly what they are all about. Either way understanding the Chakra system can be a means to aligning our internal soundtrack with peace.
As a registered yoga teacher and Reiki Master my practices include working with the chakras. If you are unfamiliar with Reiki, its an ancient Japanese relaxation technique. And I share it faithfully as it has helped me unlock ease in my own life.
Chakra is a word that translates to spinning wheel in English. Which makes understanding their essence of swirling energy comprehendible. They are acknowledged by various disciplines as a part of our subtle energy body and when they are blocked or stagnant they can cause imbalances in our life.
Many disciplines agree there are six major chakra centers located along our spinal column with the seventh floating just above our head. You may have heard of them referred to in a yoga class or guided meditation you’ve participated in. Through my studies and practices I have learned there are others, but for now we will focus on the main seven.
First, let’s look at our energy as a whole and connect this idea to something we can understand together. Let’s think of a time you walked into a room and you instantly felt a vibe. Do you remember the way it made you feel?
Thats it. That is precisely the combined energy of the room talking to your personal energy. As a highly intuitive person, I have experienced this quite a bit in my life. Over time I have come to understand it is so important to work with our own energy first and foremost. I regularly practice grounding my energy and shielding it, especially in public spaces so I don’t absorb anyone else's off-put.
With that kind of intention and attention we can unlock our individual blocks and adopt a state of flow in our personal energy that influences rather than being influenced. This helps us when we are in a potentially draining situation to exit unscathed or with less need for recovery.
That’s one reason I love working with this system There are many powerful practices to help us recalibrate our subtle energy. Some of which are crystals, mantras, Reiki, asana, visualization, mudras, oils and even sacred geometry. Calling on any one of these tools allows us to amplify our intentions and move our energy around. We have such deep power to manifest what we want to create in this life.
Anodea Judith Ph.D., shares, “Chakras are organizational centers for the reception, assimilation, and transmission of life-force energy. They are the stepping stones between heaven and earth.” Imagine that for a moment. Really consider what she is saying here.
With that in mind, let’s dive into the chakras from root to crown. We start at the root because it is believed that the energy moves up from the base of the spine and through the crown of the head.
That said, the first chakra is the root chakra, muladhara. It is the energy center located at the base of the spine and is associated with earth and the color red. It is our security center, our foundation for safety and support. When in alignment it offers us comfort and the feeling of being home within ourselves. And, a definitive knowing that our basic needs will be met.
When this area is blocked or unbalanced we can the lack self awareness to see our potential, may become disinterested in deep change, and may obsess over materialism and cultural norms. An unbalanced root chakra does not serve us in anyway. So, it is quite important to remain connected in this chakra to make our imprint here on the earth, and likewise to remember to grow from it as to psychologically expand our consciousness toward that which is greater than our self.
There are many mindful activities we can engage in to help us support this chakra and to keep it balanced. Gratitude is one of them. Give thanks regularly for the food you eat and the air you breathe. Check in with your reality and shed any excess possessions. Shift your focus to more emotional and intellectual growth experiences over material accumulation. Live and work in healthy environments. And more so, create sacred spaces in your life free from common environmental stressors. Go for a walk outside in nature, feel your toes into the sand of the beach or the grass and dirt of your own backyard. Make time to connect with and support this chakra so you can walk into your infinite potential here on earth.
The next energy center is the sacral chakra, svadhisthana. It is positioned just a little higher at the midpoint between your navel and root chakra. It is associated with the color orange and our sense of self in the world. If you have ever heard of a gut feeling it would be this chakra which is responsible for igniting that. The area is not one which analyzes what comes up for us, but it gives us a strong indication to danger and even our sexual desire.
When this area is unbalanced or blocked one can be careless with their body. Taking in an excess of unhealthy behaviors like alcohol, drugs, sugar, even toxic relationships and sexual conduct. The sacral center is strongly correlated with our addictions, and if goes unchecked can hold one back from their true growth by destabilizing our well being and aiding in the stuck-ness of these patterns.
To shift the state of this chakra, one would want to tap into their own vibrant nature. This can be done by implementing strong health habits like movement, meditation, massage, and gardening. Even the TLC of consuming more clean food options and healthy hydration can play a huge role in balancing this energy center. Once we learn to nurture ourselves in this way we can also seek more fulfilling interpersonal relationships. Connections with others that nourish our soul and support our growth into the best versions of ourselves.
Growing through the chakras and up the spine we find the the solar plexus, manipura. This is our center for willpower. It is located at the navel and is associated with the color yellow. This is our action center. Here the energy is linked to our confidence and our values.
When the solar plexus chakra is unstable we project judgment onto the world. We ignore the faults of those things we hold sacred and are driven by the blindness of our ego. Our perception is highly filtered by the ego’s desire to be right. It unleashes an unhealthy emotional world. One where we should on ourselves and others with deep conviction. A reality where we feel eager to pick fights and see no flaw within ourself. Often the concept of fanaticism is born here.
In order to balance this energy we need to understand our truths and take our calling seriously. When we tap into our inner empowerment rather than looking outward to the external world we begin to unravel the binding nature of the ego. In shining our light on what we are good at we thrive. It is absolutely necessary to celebrate ourselves and our talents with loving intention. By illuminating our passions and yet remaining in service of the highest good for all we are freed from the selfish desires of our ego. This gives us the true confidence to be in alignment with our soul’s purpose.
So what’s on your heart? Do you seek to heal or harm? The heart chakra, anahata, is the fourth energy center. The heart itself fascinates me. It has its own magnetic energy current that has been recognized by science because it can be measured up to several feet away. This chakra sits above the diaphragm and engulfs the heart and thalamus gland. It is associated with the color green, and with our ability to give and receive love.
When this center is unbalanced one can harbor jealousy, neediness, and seek revenge on others. One may feel closed off from intimate connection as well. Often times this stems from the hurt of betrayal or the grief associated with losing a loved one. Since this energy center is linked to our immune system, deep feelings of despair and hate can be risky to our personal health.
Therefore this is an area we want to approach with prudence. In order to open our heart and balance this chakra we need to practice forgiveness, compassion, and vulnerability. It’s living in step with our authenticity. It’s maintaining a willingness to forgive ourselves and others so we can begin to heal our heart's hurts. Eventually coming to understand that our source of love is an infinite reservoir provided by Spirit. This opens us up on conscience level to be able to celebrate others and their joy with a fullness that does not harbor envy. It allows us to have heart for another’s suffering without the emotional overreach that can be detrimental to our own life through self-sacrifice. Cherish yourself, and get to know those you love without judgment. Practice tolerance and move away from harsh criticisms of both friend and stranger.
The words we speak into the ether are energetic imprints on the world. Language is the life giving act of our thoughts. Which brings us to our expressive energy center. Just above the heart is the throat chakra, vishuddha. This energy center includes the thyroid gland, tongue and lungs. It is associated with the color blue and includes both verbal and written forms of our self expression. This energy center is often a chakra I find in my working with clients needs a level of freeing.
When this area is unstable one may find themselves partaking in gossip, being dishonest, feeling muted or holding fear around their truest communication. They may also struggle with active listening. Which is simply the practice of patiently hearing the expression of another without thinking of a reaction or response while they speak.
To balance this energy center we want to pay attention to the words we choose. We want to consider the tone we use as well. All of it is relevant. So, objectively listen to others and yourself. Practice taking a birds eye view at the way in which you communicate. Is it emotionally charged or is it steadfast and articulate? By logically mapping our expression we can learn ways to cultivate more effective communication skills and maintain an authenticity with our true self. Another practice to consider is to harness this energy center creatively. Whether it be through poetry or free writing, by connecting in creatively with this chakra we are able to tap into the alignment of source energy.
This leads us to the sixth chakra. This is often called our intuition center, referred to as the third eye or ajna. It is located between the eyebrows at the center of the forehead. This is a direct link to our Spirit. And a channel of communication to our seventh chakra, the crown.
The ajna energy is what gives us our integrity and vision. It is the link to spiritual guidance and keen insight for us to manifest our desires into this worldly reality. It is our inner wisdom and center for true perspective. From a psychological standpoint this is the chakra where our consciousness transcends our ego and moves beyond the parameters of society. This is where we recognize our highest self. We accept we are the “I AM” rather than the “i am” and we see clearly the Spirit within us.
An unbalanced third eye can show up as a prideful presence. One who acts out boldly, dramatically, and with an immature confidence. This is when the ego has an active role in how one sees, rather than lending the highest self access to harness the ego as a tool for clarity.
In order to bring this center into alignment we must practice mindfulness and a desire for growth. We must self-reflect and course correct ourselves with grace. This is where we observe our thoughts and triggers without judgment, but rather a willingness to decondition our understanding through the tools and practices available to us. This is where the student can become the master of thy self.
Once this level of connection within transcends the ego we have access to the infinite potential and universal flow of life. This is our true awakening through our seventh chakra, the crown, sahasrara. It is located above the top our head and is our portal to the greater Akash, Jovian archive, our one consciousness — often understood as God, the Divine, and Universe. It is the tie that binds our energy with all that exists now and forever.
Connecting our energy here embodies our inner peace and brings us into our highest alignment of Enlightenment. It allows us to be our fullest potential and as designed conduits for greatness. When we step into this level of flow we are expansive beyond our ability to see.
Trust that you can be intentional about your life. It can be as simple as confirming your gratitude daily, claiming your affirmations, rolling on a high vibe oil or accessorizing with a quality crystal empowered piece of jewelry like Rocking Vibe. By fueling ourselves with mindfulness and a higher self love we give ourselves the keys to access all of our exponential potential.