We have the answers to everything within. It’s only what goes on out there that leads us to believe it’s out there. ‘silence is loaded with answers’.
Depending on the origin you can hear Chakras having 7 or more, or 5 in Buddhism. There are 7 in Hinduism and that’s what we are focusing on, linking to yogic chakra understanding.
History of the Chakras and origin
The chakras are inextricably linked with the science and practice of yoga. Yoga means ‘yoke’ and it is a system of philosophy and practice designed to yoke the mortal self to its divine nature. Although yoga was said to have dated back to 6000 BC it was somewhat more recent that the written yoga was formed. The earliest mention of the chakras was in the Vedas, meaning ‘knowledges’, a series of hymns created from an older verbal tradition. It was developed out of there same writings as the chakras found in documents called the Upanishads. It was said here that the organs are a conduit through which the elemental self or consciousness acts on the world and the organs as receptacles or conduits for the divine energy. Prana.
Yoga talks about how to move the prana and form the spiritual energy Kundalini, this basically means prana is refined and shaped into specific patterns. Kundalini means coiled in Sanskrit, like a snake. It wraps around the spinal cord at the base of the Crown and here we again have the reference to the impacts on the the physical body. It’s objective is to unite the individual with the divine, as Yoga is to unite the mind, body and soul.
What are the chakras?
There are dimensions in time too, and chakras describe the stages in personal and cultural life-cycles. In childhood the chakras open sequentially -it is the root in the early years, moving into the crown in adulthood. As adults we may focus on one chakra more than others e.g. exploring sexuality, developing personal-power, creating prosperity, creativity or spiritual exploration. In terms of evolution there is also this pattern. Anodea Judith who wrote ‘The Wheels of Life’, says she believes we have passed through primitive humans at the Root chakra of humanity focusing on survival, into the agriculture and ship travel and now we are in the 3rd chakra of power and energy, moving into the fourth realm of the Heart chakra, focusing on love and compassion.
In the Chakra Series Workshops we discuss: How is the spiritual, mind and body linked.
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Chakras relate to certain emotions and thinking on the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and they can actually be associated with certain areas of the body with certain thoughts and feelings which also sometimes manifest physically in that part of the body.
What does it mean when we are out of balance and how can we keep the balance?
We can feel stressed, sad, nauseous, get ill, shy, confused, aggressive (depending on the chakra). Prevention is better than cure and so we aim to tackle at a subtle level before it becomes physical
How can we keep our balance?
Full details can be found on our Chakra Series
While many interpretations on the chakras advise transcending the lower chakras in favour of the more expansive upper chakras, it is not necessarily the view of all of those working with chakras. This view arose during a period in history where all the major patriarchal religions advocated the importance of mind over matter, thus denying the existence of the spiritual within the mundane realms. Careful reading of the texts does not imply the denial of the lower chakras in favour for the upper, but merely an enfoldment; where each higher level is a transcendence, which includes and is built on the level below it. In this way, the lower chakras provide a foundation for our spiritual growth, much as the roots of a tree, which push downward, allow the tree to grow taller. We do not help the tree to grow taller by pulling up its roots.
More and more research is being done that supports the existence of chakras and the Kundalini energy, however it is something to be felt and experienced rather than proven because the scientific aspect gives little practical value in actually using the system other than intellectual reassurance, since the chakras are ultimately an interior subjective experience. This is a love story between your inner self and the universe that surrounds you.