We, the humans, are supposed to have seven Chakras or energy centres ascending along the spinal cord. When these centres are unobstructed, we are fit both physically and emotionally. When they get blocked because of ill health, injury, or some other reason, we are blocked from being our own selves. There are thousands of energy channels or nadis, through which cosmic energy floods into our body.
For chakra yoga, sit erect, so that your head, neck and back are in line. Be comfortable whether sitting on floor, in padmasan or siddhasan or even on a chair. For the mind to be still, you need to feel comfortable. Several Mudras are used in chakras. When mudras also involve contraction of certain muscles, it becomes Bandha or locker.
Mudras are gestures or specified movements which alter mood attitude and perception and which deepens awareness and concentration. A mudra can be a simple hand or finger formation, or it can involve the entire body in a combination of asanas, pranayamas, bandhas and visualisation. Mudras are instrumental to awakening of Kundalini or the reservoir of dormant feminine energy, coiled up, at the base of spine. The grounding forces of the lower chakras provide the vital foundation for balanced spiritual exploration.
In Mantra Yoga, repeated chanting of certain mantras are potent words are used. Loudly repeated chants have an uplifting and soothing effect on human brain, while vibration from repeated chanting of primordial sounds, each syllable of which creates a unique resonance within the body and mind. This resonance assists healing and spiritual uplifting. Chanting is often misunderstood as religious practice. Of course you can chant a prayer to god, if that makes you happy, but you can also chant for the light within you, or for the peace and joy of your soul and create the unique vibration that starts to resonate within your heart and brain and escapes into the wide energy field of the universe.
The Chakras in ascending order, are :
1. Muladhara OR Root Chakra:
Situated at the base of the spine. Colour – red. Gem – Ruby. Element – Earth. Mantra LAM. Relates to Survival, Stability and basic needs like food shelter and love. When root chakra functions well, you will enjoy good health and lower abdomen organs like kidney and bowel will function satisfactorily. You will approach your work and challenges with enthusiasm and joy and with this attitude, material success can come more easily.
2. Swadisthan Chakra Or Sex Chakra :
This Chakra is located at the lower abdomen between the navel and the genitals. This Chakra influences the urinary and the reproductive systems. Relates to creativity, sexuality and relationships. An imbalance in this Chakra, could affect the urinary, reproductive and circulatory systems and also can cause obesity. Colour – ORANGE. Gem – Amber. Element – Water. Mantra VAM .
3. Manipura Chakra Or Solar Plexus :
Situated between the lower breastbone and the navel. It influences digestive system, liver, stomach, gall bladder and spleen. Also relates to Power, Will and Action. A well balanced Manipura Chakra can create an abundance of energy and generate an enthusiasm for work, play, development, and transformations in life. You will be bright, outgoing and capable of clear thoughts. Colour – YELLOW. Gem – Gold. Element Water. Mantra RAM.
4. Anahata Chakra Or Heart Centre :
Located at the centre of the chest, It influences pure unconditional love, a sense of devotion, peace, forgiveness, acceptance and joy. Love being the ultimate healing energt, the heart chakra is the centre for healing. Colour – GREEN. Gem – Emerald. Element Air. Mantra YAM.
5. Visuddha Chakra Or Throat Centre :
Located at the base of the throat, this Chakra is linked to communication and expression. Imbalance of this Chakra can create thyroid problem, head ache, insomnia, muscle tension and difficulty in expression and communication. Colour – Sky Blue. Gem – Sapphire. Element – Ether. Mantra – HAM.
6. Ajna Chakra Or Third Eye Centre :
Located between the two eyebrows, this third eye is said to be the center of wisdom and is linked to the hormonal glands of the brain and nervous system. The ear nose, eyes and the hormonal system are affected by imbalance of it. Color Indigo. Gem – Diamond. Element – Pure Essence. Mantra – OM.
7. Sahasrar Chakra Or Crown Centre :
The Crown Chakra is located at the top of the head and is associated with spiritual illumination and extreme bliss. The brain, the entire nervous system and the pineal gland are influenced by it. Colour – Violet. – Gem Amethyst. Element – Boundless. Mantra – No seed Mantra, you can chant OM or your favourite sound.