What are Chakras?

Posted by Andrea Rossi, RHN, R.BIE in Lifestyle + Essential Oils

2019-03-26

What are Chakras?

If you’ve come to see me for a session you know that checking up on your chakra’s is something that I do each time. I believe it’s so important to keep the energy flowing in these 7 main energy centers of our body, especially when it comes to BIE and helping the body achieve internal balance.

Although not everyone is familiar with the chakra system, it is definitely being talked about more and more frequently; in yoga classes, meditations, reiki sessions, by holistic practitioners. But it’s not just all woo-woo-voodoo this chakra talk! Although western scientific research is not in abundant, it’s said that the chakra system originated in India back between 1500 and 500 BC in the oldest test called the Vedas (Sanskrit and Hinduism scriptures). 

In my opinion it just takes one session of getting to know your energy systems to know that it is indeed real and resonating within you at every second of the day.

My goal for you today is to introduce you to the chakras and to give you a little insight on why you would want to do inner work on keeping them healthy and the energy freely flowing.

What is a Chakra?

Chakra is a Sanskrit word which literally translates to wheel or disk. It can also refer to whirlpool or whirlwind (chakravakam). However, in yoga, meditation and the practice of Ayurvedic medicine, chakra refers to wheels of energy throughout the body.

There are various maps created of the chakra system. There are actually thousands of complex channels and points (think acupuncture and the meridian lines!) as well as major central and side channels. Although there are 7 main chakras, some say there can be up to 114! This includes above and below our physical body (subtle body or astral body).

But not to worry about all those, today we’re going to be focusing on the 7 main chakras.

The 7 main chakras, which align with the spine, starting from the base of the spine (root chakra) through to the top of the head (crown chakra).

Chakra are like swirling wheels of energy where the physical and consciousness meet. This energy is called Prana, the vital life force, which is what keeps us vibrant, healthy, and alive. Each chakra corresponds to massive nerve centers and major organs in the body. Each of the 7 main chakras also contain our psychological, emotional, and spiritual states of being.

The goal is that our 7 chakras stay open, aligned, and with the energy moving fluidly between each of them and also connecting them all. If there is a blockage in one (or many), then the energy can’t flow throughout our body and creates stagnant energy which over time will manifest in various imbalances (emotional, physical, etc).

Keeping the energy flowing freely within our body and our chakras open is much easier to do when you have awareness of them and what an imbalance might feel like. Helping to balance one also helps to bring and keep the others in balance as well.

The following is a breakdown of the 7 chakras, what each represent, what physical body parts are associated with each, crystals and essential oils used to help balance them, as well as what symptoms you might feel if there is a block.

The 7 Chakras

1. The Root Chakra

Sanskrit Name: Muladhara [Mool = root, adhara = support]

This chakra, as per its name, relates to groundedness, our survival instincts, and basic needs. This chakra is our foundation and is all about feeling safe and secure. It’s connected with how we nourish ourselves (food + water), as well as our home, shelter and money, and on an emotional level feeling safe and letting go of fear.

Purpose: Survival, security, stability
Location: Base of spine
Physical Body: Feet, knees, legs, kidneys, adrenals, perineum, base of spine, large intestines
Colour: Red
Element: Earth
Crystals: Bloodstone, Garnet, Ruby, Red Jasper
Essential Oils: Arbovitae, Basil, Cedarwood, Myrrh, Patchouli, Vetiver, Fir, Balance Blend, On Guard Blend.
When it’s blocked: A variety of ailments can occur from energetic blockages of this chakra. Often including anxiety disorders, fears, disconnection from body, and poor boundaries. Physically, the first chakra is associated with problems in the colon, bladder, lower back, legs, or feet issues.
Positive Affirmation: I am a divine being of light. I am peaceful, protected, and secure.

2. The Sacral Chakra

Sanskrit Name: Svadhishthana [Swa = one’s own, Adhisthana abode or seat | aka: one’s own base]

This chakra is responsible for our creative and sexual energies. It’s also our connection with others and new experiences and having healthy boundaries.

Purpose: Authentic creation, creator, soul fire, sexuality
Location: Slightly below navel
Physical Body: Reproductive organs, urinary system, spleen, low back
Colour: Orange
Element: Water
Crystals: Carnelian, Citrine, Orange Calcite, Fire Opal
Essential Oils: Black pepper, Cinnamon, Cypress, Tangerine, Orange, Citrus Bliss Blend, Purify Cleansing Blend, Clary Calm Blend, Whisper Blend
When it’s blocked: Energetic blocks in this chakra will often lead to feelings of emotional instability or feeling uninspired creatively. Fearing change, lack of desires, or addiction-like behaviors are also common. On a physical level can be linked with disorders of the reproductive system, menstrual difficulties, and sexual disfunction.
Positive Affirmation: I am authentically creating a life free of stress and full of bliss.

3. The Solar Plexus Chakra

Sanskrit Name: Manipura [Mani = gem, Pura = city | aka: lustrous gem]

This chakra is your source of personal power, ruling over self-esteem. It controls our ability to be confident and in control of our lives. It’s also associated with fear, anxiety, and our sense of purpose. It governs all things metabolic, digestive, and stomach related.

Purpose: Power, self-worth, self-confidence, self-esteem
Location: Slightly above the navel
Physical Body: Spine, spleen, upper abdomen, gallbladder, pancreas, small intestines, digestive system, metabolism
Colour: Yellow
Element: Fire
Crystals: Amber, Golden Topaz, Sunstone, Citrine, Yellow Calcite
Essential Oils: Bergamot, Cassia, Clove, Fennel, Ginger, Grapefuit, Juniper Berry, DigestZen/ZenGest Blend, Slim+Sassy/Smart+Sassy Blend
When it’s blocked: Energetic blocks in this chakra can often be seen as low self-esteem, having difficulty making decisions, and may have anger or control issues. On a physical level most imbalances will be seen in the digestive system and metabolic systems like diabetes and hypoglycemia.
Positive Affirmation: I am powerful, confident, and successful in all my ventures.

4. The Heart Chakra

Sanskrit Name: Anahata [unstruck or unhurt]

This chakra represents where the physical and spiritual meet. Although governs all organs of the chest, it’s also all about our ability love and the awakening to spiritual awareness. When your heart chakra is aligned and balanced, love and compassion flow freely in both giving and receiving. Our inner peace.

Purpose: Love, joy, inner peace
Location: Heart region
Physical Body: Heart, lungs, thymus, breasts, arms
Colour: Green
Element: Air
Crystals: Amazonite, Chrysocolla, Emerald, Rose Quartz, Green Aventurine
Essential Oils: Cardamom, Eucalyptus, Geranium, Lime, Marjoram, Melaleuca, Peppermint, Rose, Thyme, Ylang Ylang, Serenity Calming Blend, Elevation Joyful Blend, Breathe/EasyAir Respiratory Blend
When it’s blocked: If your heart chakra is closed, there will often be lots of emotions of grief, anger, jealousy, fear of betrayal, or hatred toward yourself and others. This can also create depression, loneliness, judgemental feelings, or jealousy blocking your opportunities to love. Physical manifestations are often related to the heart and circulatory issues or the lungs and breathing issues.
Positive Affirmation: I am giving and receiving love effortlessly and unconditionally.

5. The Throat Chakra

Sanskrit Name: Vishunddha [purification or cleansing]

The throat chakra rules all areas of communication. Making sure that you’re speaking your inner feelings and truths and that they’re being properly communicated. It’s also about our ability to listen as well. Are we listening to others, but more importantly are we listening to ourselves?

Purpose: Communication, self-expression of feelings, speaking the truth, holding secrets
Location: Center of throat/neck
Physical Body: Throat, thyroid, parathyroid, voice, neck, jaw, mouth, larynx, ears
Colour: Blue
Element: Ether/sound
Crystals: Angelite, Apatite, Aquamarine, Celestite, Blue Lace Agate, Sodalite, Lapis Lazuli, Turquoise
Essential Oils: Birch, Lavender, Oregano
When it’s blocked: Most often when there is a block in this chakra you’re holing in your emotions and not speaking your truth. You could have a fear or speaking, difficulty putting feelings into words, shyness or a weak voice. Often there is a fear of judgement from others. In an overactive state you could also talk too much (possibly as a defense mechanism) or struggle to listen to others. Physical issues are most often sore throats, thyroid issues, neck and shoulder stiffness, or tension headaches.
Positive Affirmation: I am speaking clearly and truthfully with grace and ease.

6. The Third-Eye Chakra

Sanskrit Name: Anja [command]

The third-eye is your intuition. It’s your perception, imagination, memory, wisdom and the ability to think and make decisions. It is also connecting your higher and lower self and intuitive clarity. It’s the link between you and the outside world allowing you to cut through illusions to see the clear picture.

Purpose: Intuition, imagination, wisdom, ability to thing and make decisions
Location: Middle of forehead
Physical Body: Brain health, pineal gland, vision
Colour: Indigo
Element: Light
Crystals: Amethyst, Blue Quartz, Charoite, Lepidolite, Purple Fluorite, Sodality, Sudilite, Lapis Lazuli
Essential Oils: Clary Sage, Lemongrass, Immortelle Anti-Aging Blend, In Tune Focus Blend, Past Tense Tension Blend
When it’s blocked: If your lower chakras are unbalanced, the third-eye will most likely be as well. You may have trouble tapping into your intuition or not trusting it if you do. You could end up acting more judgemental, dismissive, and even introverted often with feelings of anxiety and depression. On a physical level it can be associated with issues such as headaches, dizziness, vision problems, memory issues, or other brain health issues.
Positive Affirmation: I am tuned into the Divine to follow the path towards my purpose.

7. The Crown Chakra

Sanskrit Name: Sahasrara [thousand petaled]

The crown chakra is the meeting point between your physical body and individual consciousness meets a higher state or universal consciousness. This is what enables you to experience spiritual growth and feel connected to the universe. This chakra helps you move past your materialistic needs accessing the utmost clarity and enlightened wisdom.

Purpose: Cognition, our connection to Spirituality and Higher Self and life purpose
Location: Top/center of head
Physical Body: Hypothalamus, central nervous system, cerebral cortex
Colour: Violet/white
Element: Thought
Crystals: Clear Quartz, Diamond, Lepidolite, Moonstone, Sugilite, Amethyst, Sapphire
Essential Oils: Frankincense, Helichrysum, Lemon, Melissa, Roman Chamomile, Rosemary, Sandalwood, Zendocrine Detox Blend, DDR Prime Cellular Complex.
When it’s blocked: When the crown chakra is imbalanced, it can cause you to feel out of sorts, and put stress on your body and mind. This can create feelings of isolation and disconnection from everyone and everything. It can also hinder your ability to let go of materialistic needs. If overactive you can experience a disconnection from your physical body and earthly matters and even create a lack of empathy. A good balance is needed with the crown chakra so not to get lost in the expansiveness of the universe.
Positive Affirmation: I am one with my higher self and one with the Divine.

Balancing the Chakras

Having the awareness to which of your chakras are out of balance is key to bringing them into alignment (not underactive nor overactive). Because our energies are in constant flux, determining which chakra is imbalanced can be difficult if you do not have an apparent problem.

The best way is to start listening to your body’s signals and clues.

Reading through the 7 chakras, did one (or more) stand out to you? Did any of the emotional or physical ailments related to each sound familiar to what you personally have been struggling with?

This is your body giving you clues that energetic imbalances in your energy centers are out of balance. The longer the imbalances reside within you, the bigger the health or emotional problem will become.

There are various ways to help balance your chakra’s. Essential oils and crystals can be very helpful in this process. Check out the crystals and oils listed for the chakras you feel need the most support and add some into your daily routine to see how you notice the shifts in energy for you. Making sure to say your affirmations as well to help bring intent to your actions.

Having a regular meditation practice is also very helpful and I find most impactful on being able to identify which chakras need support and what is the root of the imbalance.

New to meditation or not sure how to start or even how to apply this to your chakras? Lisa Jardine {Reiki Master, Huna Practitioner, and Meditation Coach} and I are putting on a 7 week chakra meditation series starting on April 1st to May 13th (Monday’s at 7pm). For more information and to sign up for the 7 Week Chakra Healing Meditation Series, click here. 

Movement and yoga are also very impactful when it comes to moving stagnant energy in your chakras. To pair with our 7 week series mentioned above, we will also be having 2 restorative yoga classes (April 13th and May 11th) to bookmark the meditation series. The poses will be specific to opening and balancing each of the 7 chakras. For more information on the healing benefits of restorative yoga and to sign up, click here.

In love and Healing,

 

 

 

 

 

References

https://chopra.com/articles/what-is-a-chakra  
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1142191/  
https://www.quora.com/Is-there-any-scientific-proof-of-the-existence-of-chakras 
https://www.chakra-anatomy.com/chakra-science.html 
http://cdn3.collective-evolution.com/assets/uploads/2014/03/Can-Internal-Excellence-be-Measured_Deshpande.pdf  

Get your FREE copy now of

7 Soups & Stews for Optimal Digestion