The first 16 parts of this series of Sense out of Nonsense(SOON), described the knowledge of existence, but from the 17th part onwards, we are also understanding the practical aspects. And in the Doing part, there is nothing more important than chakra manipulation. While there are thousands of chakra cleansing, balancing and energizing techniques – I shall just try and explain in my own “energy” method, what chakras are and how they could be manoeuvred to gain extra energy and lead oneself towards evolution. May I request you to pay attention to the chart below, as it is the most critical process of purification and evolution.
The pranamaya kosha or energy body has three components – the chakra, the nadis and the marmas. I have already written on the cleaning of nadis and opening up the energy junctions in the earlier blogs, but the key is the energy producer i.e. chakra. Chakras or energy vortex could be understood as an organizational centre for the receiving energy from the nadis, transformation of the energy and transmission of the same via the nadis. In the physical body, blood comes to the heart from the veins, gets purified and then pumps back via the arteries. In the energy body, there are various centres of energy receipt called chakras, which transform the energy and transmit it. Because chakras are in the higher frequency body (pranamaya kosha) it cannot be seen with the naked eye.
Our chakras being the core centres, form the complete coordinating network of our beautifully designed, but complex mind-body system. The chakras are the master programs that govern our life, thoughts, emotions, loves, learning and illumination and chakra cleansing, balancing and energizing is one of the fastest process for spiritual growth. There are thousands of websites and books on chakras and its cleaning, balancing and energizing processes, but please proceed with care and caution as there is no alternative to learning these things by an experienced teacher. I know of many people who have tried these processes either reading books, watching on TV or from friends or an unworthy teacher and have suffered tremendously.
Chakras are the physical, emotional, mental and psychological centres in the human energy body and is a connect between matter and consciousness. While there are many minor chakras, the main chakras are seven in number and are aligned with the spinal cord. These are connected by the three major nadis – sushumna, ida and pingala.
Our body gets formed by slowing down of frequency (involution process). In the womb, the brain is formed first, then the spinal cord slowly gets created by materialization of energy through densification, from top to bottom. Hence, the Sahasrara chakra forms first with the highest frequency among the chakras and as materialization takes place due to slowing down, the other frequencies start forming into matter and ajna, visshudha, anahata, manipura, swadhisthana and muladhara chakras come into existence.
The chakras are interrelated to all the components of the physical body via the nadis – which means that the nerve ganglions, endocrine system, organs, blood, lymphs, bones and semen are all interdependent on the health of the chakras. Thus there is a synthesis of chakras with the organs and the endocrine glands.
The chakras impact not just the physical parts of the body, but also emotional, psychological and all other aspects of life. Please go through the chart below to understand how each of the chakra is interconnected to various aspects of our personal existence.
Note: The frequency that I mention in the chart has been picked from a website. While some other websites talk about a different hz, but all these works and research follow the pattern of logic of muladhar being of lowest frequency and increasing to sahasrara, at the highest.
Let us look at some of the principles of spiritual growth using chakras to purify the body, open the blockages, balance the body and energize it. While I cannot share my practice (as they are not meant to be shared) – I would recommend that anyone interested in personal evolution should learn some practices like yantra, mantra, tantra and yoga practices for chakra bhedan (opening). I shall just attempt to explain the principles of chakra cleansing, balancing and energizing using yantra (visualizing colors and shapes), mantra (uttering of sounds) and tantra (techniques of action). We shall look at the seven main chakras and then describe them one by one.
Please note that energy follows awareness. For example, pain is a demand for energy – because once there is pain in body, the brain sends more energy to that spot hence healing it faster. Every life is full of innumerable examples of being aware of some problem, putting our energies there and solving them. Therefore, by visualizing and hence being aware of the chakras, nadis and other energy parts of the body, we automatically send energy there to open blockages and energizing them.
MULADHAR CHAKRA (Root )
Meaning : Foundation / Root Element : Earth Action : Grounding Mindset : Self Aspects: Food and shelter Guna: Tamas Yoga: Hatha
Yantra : Muladhar can be visualized as a rotating vortex of energy with four petals which are the four nadis coming in carrying energy from the legs, feet, bones and the large intestines. The colour of this slowest of the chakras is Red – (remember that the seven chakras correspond to the division of the white light into VIBGYOR colors, with muladhar being the slowest, thus being Red). The symbolic animal for this earth chakra is an elephant and its deity is Ganesh. This deity is designed to symbolise all aspects of muladhar with its earthy look, vermilion colour, shape, elephant head and square structure – if one knows the correct procedure for any chakra meditation, then one can actually see the deity before their eyes. Because it is the first chakra and denotes the beginning of evolution, Ganesh or Ganapati is also prayed whenever any new work is commenced including spiritual sadhana. That’s the starting point. It also contains the symbol of the kundalini as the kundalini is situated below the spinal cord.
Mantra: The four alphabets on the petals correspond to the vibratory frequency of the four nadis coming in from the physical body, namely “vang”, “shang”, “Kshang” and “sang”. The main frequency or Bija mantra of the muladhar chakra is “Lam”. Uttering these mantras in a certain format and in a certain phonetic style, stimulates the chakra.
Practices: There are teachers and gurus who teach the correct techniques of stimulating the chakras using visualization, puja, havans and mantras, also called kriya kands. There are various yogic practices held to incite the energy in Muladhara including: asanas (such as Garudasana, Shashankasana, Siddhasana); nosetip gazing, and specific pranayamas; and most importantly the practice of mula bandha the contraction of the perineum., which awakens kundalini
Foods : Meat, proteins, onions, garlic, beans, nuts, dairy products releases adrenal gland. Red food – beet, red meat, red wine are good. Being a root chakra – food grown below the soil is good for muladhar.
General : People who are predominantly of Muladhar constitution are good in health, fit and fond of heavy food. They are too self oriented, insecure, stable, grounded, pessimists, instinctual, violent with great survival instincts. Animals are predominantly of Muladhar.
The first chakra is connected with psychological abilities, ensuring survival, protection of an individual. Its proper functioning gives confidence and stability. The lack of balance leads to the weak will, self-consciousness, sadness, depression. Such people cannot find the goal in their lives, lack roots and are preoccupied with satisfying their own bestial needs.
SWADHISTHANA CHAKRA (Sacral)
Meaning : Home of self Element : Water Action : Comfort Mindset : Enjoyment Aspects: Procreation Guna : Tamas Yoga: Tantra
Yantra : Swadhisthana is the next chakra with six different nadis entering and visualized as a rotating vortex of energy with six petals carrying energy from womb, genitals, kidney, bladder and lower back. The shape of the chakra is a crescent of the moon, because being a water chakra, it is affected by the moon The colour of this chakra is Orange. The symbolic animal for this water chakra is a Crocodile, which is an amphibian connected to the earth as well as water. Moving with the water, it depicts the sensuous nature of a second chakra person. Its deity is Vishnu – the lord of preservation.
Mantra: The six alphabets on the petals correspond to the vibratory frequency of the nadis coming in from the physical body, namely “bang”, “bhang”, “mang”, “yang”, “rang” and “lang” . The Bija mantra of the swadhisthana chakra is “Vam”. Uttering these mantras in a certain format and in a certain phonetic style, stimulates the chakra.
Practices : There are teachers and gurus who teach the correct techniques of stimulating the chakras using visualization, puja, havans and mantras, also called kriya kands. Practices for controlling and balancing the energy in Swadhisthana chakra include vajroli mudra ( contraction of the genitals ), ashvini mudra ( contraction of the anus ) and various asanas and pranayamas.
Foods : Juices, soups, water, drinks, alcohol. Orange foods like carrot, oranges, sweet lime are good.
General : People who are predominantly of Swadhisthana constitution are reasonably good in health, fit and fond of liquid food. They are interested in comfort and luxury with a nature of disdain, delusion and suspicion. They have a feeling of all-destructiveness, affection and pitilessness. The desire for physical sensations and mental fantasies accompanied by restlessness and confusion. The person of second chakra predominance loves entertainment and fantasy and is full of jealousy, mercy, envy and joy.
A properly functioning Svadhishthana is connected with such psychological features as patience, stamina and self-confidence. The lack of balance results in frustration, worry and fear.
MANIPURA CHAKRA (Solar Plexus)
Meaning : Home of gems Element : Fire Action : Recognition Mindset : Competitive Aspects: Ego / family Guna : Rajas Yoga : Karma
Yantra : Manipura is the next chakra with ten different nadis entering and visualized as a rotating vortex of energy with ten petals carrying energy from the digestive system, liver and gall bladder. The shape of the chakra is an inverted triangle, symbolizing a fire rising. The colour of this chakra is Yellow. The symbolic animal for this chakra is a Ram, the vehicle of Agni, the fire god. It depicts the nature of a third chakra person – strong and charges with the head. Its deity is Rudra – a primal form of Shiva seated on tiger skin (depicting the mind).
Mantra: The ten alphabets on the petals correspond to the vibratory frequency of the nadis coming in from the physical body. The Bija Mantra of the manipura chakra is “Ram”. Uttering these mantras in a certain format while meditating on the navel and in a certain phonetic style, stimulates the chakra. When repeated in proper manner, the sound increases digestive power, powers of assimilation and absorption and brings longevity.
Practices : There are teachers and gurus who teach the correct techniques of stimulating the chakras using visualization, puja, havans and mantras, also called kriya kands. Different practices for arousing and balancing the energies of Manipura include various asanas which work on that part of the body, pranayama, Uddiyana bandha (exhaling and pulling back and up of the abdomen and diaphragm respectively) and agnisara kriya (practicing jalandhara bandha and moving the abdomen in and out), as well as the practice of Nauli (stomach churning), and a pranayama called the union of prana and apana, where the lower and higher winds are made to unite together.
Foods : Starch, carbohydrates, sugar, sweets, caffeine. In the endocrine system, Manipura is said to be associated with the pancreas, and the outer adrenal cortex. These glands create important hormones involved in digestion, converting food into energy for the body. Yellow food like lemon are good.
General : Some of the characteristics of people of this chakra are spiritual ignorance, thirst, jealousy, treachery, shame, fear, disgust, delusion, foolishness and sadness. Manipura is considered the centre of dynamism, energy, willpower and achievement. It is associated with the power of fire, and digestion. It is also associated with the sense of sight, and the action of movement.
The proper functioning of the third chakra ensures the following psychological features: decisiveness, independent behavioral motivations, personal energy, strong will bright individuality. Imbalanced Manipura may result in nervousness, lack of confidence, avidity, and complex of guilt.
ANAHATA CHAKRA (Heart)
Meaning : Unstruck Element : Air Action : Love Mindset : Charity Aspects: Balance Guna : Rajas or sattva Yoga: Bhakti
Yantra : Anahata is the next chakra with twelve different nadis entering and visualized as a rotating vortex of energy with twelve petals carrying energy from the lungs, heart, circulatory system, arms and hands. The shape of the chakra are two triangles one straight and one inverted, symbolizing balance and the male and female aspects in harmony. The colour of this chakra is Green. The symbolic animal for this earth chakra is an antelope. It depicts the nature of anahata chakra person – aware, sensitive and nimble. Its deity is Ishana Rudra Shiva – a detached form of Shiva wearing a tiger skin (depicting the mind).
Mantra: The ten alphabets on the petals correspond to the vibratory frequency of the nadis coming in from the physical body. The main frequency of the anahata chakra is “Yam”. Uttering these mantras in a certain format while meditating on the navel and in a certain phonetic style, stimulates the chakra. When repeated in proper manner, the sound vibrates in the heart and opens up minor blockages.
Practices : There are teachers and gurus who teach the correct techniques of stimulating the chakras using visualization, puja, havans and mantras, also called kriya kands. Anahata is awoken and balanced through practices including asanas, pranayama, and the practice of ajapa japa (repetition of a sacred mantra). It is purified through the process of bhakti (devotion).
Foods : Vegetables, green leafy vegetables gives the body a balanced hygiene and is good for anahata. Music, scenery fulfill anahata.
General : This encompasses good tendencies, sanctity, balance and good consciousness. Full of love, faith, bhakti and trust. To beware of sleep, dullness, laziness, anger and cruelty. Generally happy, playful, joyous people.
Properly functioning heart chakra gives such features as love, compassion, friendliness, responsibility. When it lacks balance a person becomes insensitive, emotionally closed, passive, stuck in sadness and spleen.
VISUDDHA CHAKRA (Throat)
Meaning : Pure Element : Ether Action : Creativity Mindset : Communication Aspects: Knowledge Guna : Rajas or sattva Yoga: Mantra
Yantra : Vishuddha is the next chakra with sixteen different nadis entering and visualized as a rotating vortex of energy with petals carrying energy from the throat, ears, mouth, shoulder and neck. The shape of the chakra is a silver crescent – the lunar symbol of pure sound. , The colour of this chakra is Blue. The symbolic animal for this earth chakra is the elephant Gaja – the lord of herbivorous animals depicting patience, memory and synchronicity with nature. Its deity Panchavaktra Shiva – a five headed symbolizing Aghora (ether), Ishana (water), Mahadeva (earth), Sada shiva (Air) and Rudra (fire) depicting fearlessness, dissolution of all elements into one union.
Mantra: The sixteen alphabets on the petals correspond to the vibratory frequency of the nadis coming in from the physical body. The main frequency of the chakra is “Hmm”. Uttering these mantras in a certain format vibrates the brain and causes the cerebral spinal fluid to flow into the throat and improve the tonal quality of the voice.
Practices : There are teachers and gurus who teach the correct techniques of stimulating the chakras using visualization, puja, havans and mantras, also called kriya kands. Vishuddha can be opened and balanced through practices including asanas (such as shoulder-stand), pranayama, jalandhara bandh (throat lock), and most importantly the Khechari mudra (pushing the tongue up the opening). This chakra can be cleaned/opened by meditation and also by practicing singing or playing instrumental music.
Foods : Fruits.
General : One who enters this chakra becomes a master of his self. This encompasses psychic energy, clairvoyance and non-verbal communications. it is associated with higher discrimination, and it is associated with creativity and self-expression. When Vishuddha is closed, we undergo decay and death. When it is open, negative experience is transformed into wisdom and learning. The success and failure in one’s life depends upon the state of this chakra (polluted/clean). Guilty feeling is the most prominent reason for this chakra; to block the Kundalini Energy moving upwards.
The proper functioning of the fifth chakra manifests in such features of psyche as communicativeness, expression high creative potential, inspiration. If it lacks balance a tendency to obsessive ideas occurs, expression is missing, and behavior becomes stereotypic.
AJNA CHAKRA (Third eye)
Meaning : Perception Element : Light Action : Intuition Mindset : Humanity Aspects: Spends life for others Guna : Sattva Yoga: Yantra
Yantra : Ajna is the next chakra with ninety six different nadis entering from two sides in bunches of 48 each and visualized as a rotating vortex of energy with petals carrying energy from the eyes, base of skull, brow etc. The two petals symbolize the end of dualism, or the two worlds – manifest and unmanifest or denotes the two nadis that meet here – ida and pingala. The colour of this chakra is Indigo. Its deity Ardhanareshwar a half-female and half-male form of Shiva – Shakti, symbolizes the left and right brain activity union.
Mantra: “Aum” or “Om” is the Bija(seed) mantra which is the drone of the person’s body itself. The mean sound from the nadis coming in from the two sides are “Hum” and “Kshum”.
Practices : There are teachers and gurus who teach the correct techniques of stimulating the chakras using visualization, puja, havans and mantras, also called kriya kands. Different practices are said to stimulate the Ajna chakra, including Trataka (steady gazing), Shambhavi Mudra (gazing at the space between the eyebrows), and some forms of Pranayama (breath exercises).This chakra can be cleaned/opened by meditating on Aum.
Foods : Ganja, Grass, Herb, Marijuana, Weed, Incense etc.
General : Ajna is associated with the third eye on the forehead. It is sometimes associated with the pineal gland, and sometimes with the pituitary gland. The Pituitary Gland is considered as the master gland of all endocrine glands, whose secretions control all the other endocrine glands. The third eye is the conscience. It enhances the development of psychic abilities – clairaudience, clairvoyance etc. Being the connecting point of the three main nadis – ida, pingala and sushumana, it goes beyond the routine of day-to-day life and has an overview of existence and a person with an active ajna chakra will spend his life serving humanity.
The normal functioning of this chakra activates intellect and psychic abilities, imagination, possibility of bright visualization.Imbalance of the sixth chakra makes concentration more difficult, mind stiff, communicativeness bad, can provoke schizophrenia. Its malfunctioning may be the reason of head aches.
SAHASRARA CHAKRA (Crown)Meaning : Thousandfold Element : Thought Action : Understanding Mindset : Bliss Aspects: Is in communion with the highest energies Guna : Sattva Yoga: Jnana or knowledge
Yantra : Sahasrara is described with 1,000 multi-coloured petals which are arranged in 20 layers each of them with 50 petals. The pericarp is golden, and inside of it is a circular moon region, inside of which is an downward pointing triangle. Thousands of nadis out of the 72000 nadis come together here from the cerebral cortex and the central nervous system. During the concentration on the seventh chakra it can be visualized as the amaranth or purple spot. It corresponds with the highest unincarnated in form being Paramashiva. As the higher being Paramashiva contains non-differetiated male and female elements. That is why images of male and female gods are missing in the meditation on Sahasrara.
Mantra: 50 in number in each layer: Ang to L(rh)ang or Kshang, arranged from right to left. As the highest chakra Sahasrara does not have the sound mantra, yet it is connected with the subtle vibration of mantra OM that cannot be heard.
Practices : There are teachers and gurus who teach the correct techniques of stimulating the chakras using visualization, puja, havans and mantras, also called kriya kands. This chakra can be cleaned/opened by visualizing the Shri Yantra.
Foods : Fasting
General : Sahasrara chakra is the highest frequency chakra and symbolizes detachment from illusion; an essential element in obtaining supramental higher consciousness of the truth that one is all and all is one. When a yogi is able to raise his or her kundalini, energy of consciousness, up to this point, the state of Samādhi, or union with God, is experienced. Meditating on this point is said to bring about the siddhis, or occult powers, of transforming into the divine, and being able to do whatever one wishes. The seventh chakra is believed to be the center connected with higher spiritual level. The opening of this chakra removes all limits of space and time.
The properly functioning seventh chakra is associated with ability for enlightenment, universal love, contact with universal mind, having universal energy. If it lacks balance depression, isolation, worry, psychosis and more serious psychic diseases can occur.