Have you ever wondered why chakras are important?
Everything in the Universe is comprised of energy, from the smallest pebble to the largest ocean. The mountains, trees, and every cell in our body are also made of energy. Chakras (pronounced “Chalk-Ra-s”) are considered the center of our life force energy, hence their importance.
There are seven main chakras that run along your spine and each has a corresponding number, name, color, and health focus. Let’s examine the importance of each chakra and where it is located within the physical body, as understanding the chakra system can help invite more harmony and balance into your life.
Located at the base of the spine, the Root Chakra (Muladhara) is red in color and is associated with grounding, stability, and physical identity.
A blocked root chakra can manifest with physical issues like arthritis, constipation, and bladder or colon problems. Blockages can also show up emotionally through feelings of insecurity, specifically as it relates to basic needs like shelter and money.
When the Root Chakra is aligned and open, you will feel grounded and secure, both physically and emotionally.
The Sacral Chakra (Svadhisthana) is located just below the navel and above the pubic bone. Orange is the color most associated with this chakra and it has to do with sexuality, creativity, and pleasure.
Issues with your Sacral Chakra can be seen via problems with urinary tract infections, lower back pain, and impotency. Emotionally, this chakra is connected to our feelings of self-worth, and even more specifically, our self-worth around pleasure, sexuality, and creativity.
Solar Plexus Chakra
The third chakra is our Solar Plexus chakra (Manipura) which is represented by the color yellow and resides in the stomach area. This chakra is most commonly associated with self-esteem and confidence.
Blockages in the Solar Plexus chakra are often experienced through digestive issues like ulcers, heartburn, bowel movements, and indigestion. It’s the chakra of our personal power and is related to our self-esteem and self-confidence.
These first three chakras focus on our basic needs as humans. This is why when any one of these chakras is out of balance it affects all of the chakras after it. As we move into the last 4 chakras we see a shift from our basic needs to more spiritual and emotional needs.
The Heart Chakra (Anahata) sits, as you may have guessed, in the center of the chest, just above your heart. It’s green in color and is associated with love and compassion, both for yourself and others.
Blocks in our Heart Chakra can manifest in our physical health through heart problems, asthma, and weight issues. It represents the ability to love and connect to others and, when out of balance, it can make you feel lonely, insecure, and isolated.
Blue in color, this chakra sits exactly where you would expect it to, in your throat. The Throat Chakra (Vishuddha) is connected to our ability to communicate verbally.
Voice and throat problems as well as issues with the teeth, gums, and mouth, can indicate a blockage. Misalignment can also be seen through dominating conversations, gossiping, speaking without thinking, and having trouble speaking your mind. When in alignment, you will speak and listen with compassion and feel confident you are being true to yourself with your words.
Third Eye Chakra
Your Third Eye Chakra (Ajna), purple in color, sits between your eyes on your forehead and is associated with your intuition.
A blocked Third Eye Chakra can physically manifest as headaches, vision problems, or problems with focus and concentration. When open and aligned, it’s thought that you will follow your passion and intuition, make decisions in keeping with your truest desires.
White in color (or pure light, which is all colors combined), the Crown Chakra (Sahaswara) sits at the top of the head and has to do with awareness and intelligence. It is linked to every other chakra, so it affects all of the organs as well as the brain and nervous system.
Considered the chakra of enlightenment, the Crown Chakra represents a connection to your life’s purpose and spirituality. When blocked, you may come across as narrow-minded, skeptical, or stubborn. When this chakra is open, it is thought to help keep all the other chakras open and to bring you bliss and enlightenment.
This segment from Avatar the Last Airbender does an amazing job of breaking down the basics of chakras in a way that’s easy to understand and creates a nice visual for you to see. Check it out.
How to Balance Your Chakras
It’s all well and good to identify the colors and characteristics of each chakra but now what? How do you go about aligning your chakras for optimal harmony and flow in your life?
Well, meditation is probably the most effective way to balance your chakras but a regular yoga practice can be incredibly useful as well. Practicing visualization during your meditation or yoga practice, where you focus on one chakra at a time, is a great place to start. Start with your Root Chakra, visualizing the color red, and work your way up the chakras until you end at the Crown Chakra. There are chakra-balancing chants you can practice and you can even employ essential oils and crystals to enhance your chakra meditation. Look at the image above to see which tools you can use to support different chakras.
Chakras are energetic centers of the body, fluid in nature, that correspond to feelings and emotions. Know that it’s common for various chakras to resonate more deeply than others and also that this will evolve and change as you do. Sitting and breathing, with your chakras in mind, can be a useful tool to scan your energetic body and see where you need more support.
If you’re wanting to dive even deeper into understanding chakras and more about Vedic philosophy, join us for our next Yoga Teacher Training. This training will not only allow you to dive deeper into your own yoga practice but teach about all 8-limbs of yoga, connect you with an amazing community, and provide you with another option in your career if you decide you want to teach afterwards.