What are Chakras
A Simple Introduction to Chakras
I get it…chakras can seem airy fairy and all ‘new agey’. Yet, when you truly begin to learn about them you can see how much they call tell us about ourselves.
In Yogic tradition, the human body has seven energy centers called chakras. When these energy centers are healthy and open, so are we–physically, emotionally, mentally and in our relationships with ourselves and others. But when they are blocked through injury, illness, or disconnection from others, we are blocked from being our best selves and can feel frustrated, stuck and lack of vitality.
Throughout childhood and through our life experiences, we often create constrictions in our chakras. For instance, if we received criticism for our singing repeatedly, we might close down our fifth chakra (throat center), limiting our creative expression or ability to speak up for ourselves.
Traumas, fears and ‘negative’ experiences can lead to long-term imbalances in your energy system that then manifest into challenges like insecurity, anger, stress or disease.
Often we try to understand ourselves better through Western psychology which is great but sometimes we are missing a vital component – our energetic system. It’s also important to address our underlying energy system, which affects how we live, breathe and express ourselves.
This is where energy healing comes in. It supports the energetic system in cleansing the constrictions in your system which may be having an effect in your life force in dozens of ways.
How do I know if my chakras are balanced?
There is a voice that doesn’t use words – LISTEN ~Rumi
Our bodies are in constant flux between balance and imbalance. Balance is not static, it is constantly moving. Awareness is the starting point as once you bring awareness to your body/mind, you can start to learn its signals and clues. You begin to listen to your body on all levels as your guide.
When we are feeling good, relaxed and happy in the world then our enery is flowing, we feel like we are in the flow. However if we’re feeling depressed, anxious, stressed, etc then our energy will be depleted and our level of vitality may be affected also. Over time this will affect a person’s well being and this is where Reiki or Shamanic Healing would be very beneficial.
We live in a world where the pace appears to be getting faster almost to the point where we are on the go twenty four seven, or feel that we should be. As we push ourselves forward in our lives, many of us are losing the balance and harmony.
Instead of choosing to enjoy each day and being grateful for what we have, we worry about the past and the future and let the present pass us by. All this worry and stress in our daily lives affects our energy centres and they become blocked i.e. the energy does not flow freely through the chakras.
A ‘block’ is a place where energy is trapped or constricted. In dealing with a block, you need to get the energy moving which is what Reiki does. When energy flows through the whole body it creates harmony and releases imbalances. Reiki assists to bring the chakras into alignment and balance.
No chakra works independently of the other chakras, they are all part of the whole energy system. Each chakra only works fully when the other chakras are also fully engaged. They are all part of a whole.
Each chakra has a role in balancing some aspect of our life physically, emotionally, mentally or spiritually. Many things can affect our chakras from our physical environment to our emotions to our mental dialogue. It’s essential for good health, to be aware of how balanced or unbalanced our chakras are.
What is Energy?
Energy is our life force, if we are to achieve all that we desire then we need to maximise our energy levels. The higher your energy levels, the better you feel and the more likely you are to achieve your results as you will put all your ‘energy’ into it. In Japan, energy is called ‘Ki’, meaning universal life force. Energy constantly flows through our body and in a lot of healing aspects it is seen as moving through the seven energy centres, or our chakras although we do not physically see it.
Energy is something that we can all feel but most of us feel it unconsciously.
Close your eyes and remember a time when you were having a joyful moment like watching a beautiful sunset. Notice how you feel when you think of this situation. You might find you start smiling, you feel a warmth in your heart or peace in your tummy. On the other hand, remember a challenge that you were having with a colleage or partner. Notice how you feel when you think of this situation. You might find you feel tight around your chest, your heart beat heights, your palm sweat and you feel anxious.
Did you notice the difference in what you were feeling? While thinking of a situation you enjoyed you feel, relaxed, things flow and time passes quickly. However, when you think of the challenge with a colleague or partner then you might feel upset, worried, tense, awkward, and out of sync. You react in this way as your body is responding to the energy, thoughts and emotions.
Energy Likes to Move
Simply speaking, if you even think about something is challenging you, you probably find yourself tired from trying to figure it all out, you many feel a knot in your stomach, anger rising from inside or stuck as you can see the wood from the trees. From this place, it can be harder to make choices that feel aligned – this is where healing comes in.
Energy likes to move and wants to move but can get stuck – healing helps the energy to move better through the body so you don’t get ‘lost’ in the emotions, mental dialogue of your issue so you can move through it.
Obstacles do not appear in your way in order to stop you. Rather, they appear in order to strengthen and hone you and your plans. They are not your enemy. They are your secret ally, but only if you treat them as friendly forces of nature. – Anodea Judith
Healing may not be so much about getting better, as about letting go of everything that isn’t you – all of the expectations, all of the beliefs – and becoming who you are– Rachel Naomi Remen
The Main Aspects of the 7 Chakras
The ‘root chakra’ is located at the base of the spine and forms our foundation. It represents the element earth and is related to our survival instincts (food, shelter and protection). It stimulates the urge for us to take care of and stand up for ourselves, in order to stay alive. It appeals to our sense of grounding and connection to our physical bodies and physical world. Ideally this chakra brings us security and presence in the here and now. It manifests for us what we need in order to survive. It grounds our spirit into the material world.
Fear is one of the core energies that affect the root chakra. The archetypes of the root chakra ae the Mother and the Victim.
The ‘sacral chakra’ is located in the abdomen, lower back, and sexual organs. It relates to the water element and our emotions and sexuality. Its main function is to provide a sense of self – our inner self/inner child. It is the source of creativity and inspiration. This chakra controls our appetite for sensation, be it through sound, smell, taste, touch or sight. Ideally this chakra brings us depth of feeling, sexual fulfillment and the ability to accept change. It opens us up to that which we desire, allows us to revel in the beauty and delight of life, manifests for us that which we desire and that which brings us pleasure.
Guilt is one of the core energies that affect the sacral chakra. The archetypes of the sacral chakra are Emperor / Empress and Martyr.
The ‘solar plexus’ chakra is known as the ‘power chakra’, located at the solar plexus. Its main function is to supply energy in the form of heat, power and enthusiasm. It rules our consciousness of decision, creative expression, personal power, will and autonomy, as well as our metabolism. When in balance we have healthy self esteem, confidence, self worth and are able to make decisions in alignment with ourselves.
Shame is one of the core energies that affect the solar plexus. The archetypes of the solar plexus are the peaceful warrior and the servant.
The ‘heart chakra’ is located at the center of your chest. It is related to love and compassion. The chakra connects the lower ego/physical self to the higher soul/spiritual self. It helps to bring us love by giving out love and draws into our lives that which we love. In balance our fourth chakra allows us to love deeply, feel compassion, and feel a deep sense of peace and centeredness. We allow ourselves to love unconditionally.
Grief is one of the core energies that affect the heart chakra. The archetypes of the heart chakra are the Lover and the Actor.
This is the chakra located at the throat and is related to communication, self expression and creativity. As we re-discover our individual & authentic selves it helps us to express ourselves, to clearly communicate what we need, believe, desire and feel. It allows for free communication helping us feel centered and happy. It also helps us while we are meditating to connect with our higher guidance. The chakra is connected to your inner self and is deeply connected to the soul and allows you to listen as your soul speaks.
Dishonesty is one of the core energies that affect the throat chakra. The archetypes of the throat chakra are the Communicator and the Silent Child.
This chakra is known as the brow chakra or ‘third eye’ center. It is located slightly above and between the eye brows. Its main function is the centre of inner vision. This chakra is the place of intuition and soul knowledge. As such it opens our psychic and spiritual awareness faculties as well as our understanding of archetypal levels. When in balance it allows us to have insight and knowledge. It teach us the power of the mind, to help us ‘dream big’ and create our desired reality.
Illusion is one of the core energies that affect the third eye chakra. The archetypes of the third eye chakra are the Intuitive and the Intellectual.
The ‘crown chakra’ relates to consciousness as pure awareness. It is located at the top of the head. It is our connection to the collective consciousness and the greater world beyond. It is believed that this is where the soul enters the physical body at birth and departs at the time of death. When balanced and developed this chakra brings us knowledge, wisdom, understanding, spiritual connection, & harmony. It awakens us to the fact that we are divine beings, connects us to the divine and helps us experience being ‘one with all that is.’
Attachment is one of the core energies that affect the crown chakra. The archetypes of the crown chakra are the Guru and the Egotist.