The chakras are our energetic organs, and form a bridge between our physical and energetic bodies. The word “chakra” is Sanskrit, meaning “wheel”, and the “ch” is pronounced as in the word “chair” or “church”.
There are seven main chakras that lie within the physical body, beginning at the base of the spine and culminating at the crown of the head. We actually have hundreds of chakras, including the many chakras distributed throughout the physical body (often called “minor” chakras, such as the Palm Chakras); the chakras that extend past the crown of the head, ascending upward; and the “Earth Star” or “Foot” Chakra, which extends into the Earth and is located about 3 feet below our feet.
There are many different perspectives on the chakra system, and while its roots are based in ancient Indian Yogic practices, the modern chakra system that the majority of the world works with has been influenced by many different cultures and healing practices; this is also why there seems to be a lot of conflicting information about the chakras.
In truth, the way we perceive and describe the chakras today bears little resemblance to how they were originally described. Don’t let this dissuade you, however. The chakras, as we now understand them, still provide us with a practical and effective system from which to operate in our pursuit of health and wellness.
An Overview of the 7 Major Chakras (Plus 1!)
The Root Chakra (red) is located in your perineum, or pelvic floor. It represents life, physical vitality, birth, and creation. It is also associated with your sense of stability and safety, your ability to create financial security and abundance for yourself, as well as all of your eliminatory organs and your body’s overall physical health. It provides energy to the spine, kidneys, bladder, and the suprarenal glands.
The Sacral Chakra (orange) is located in the sacrum, around your reproductive organs and between your hips. It is responsible for sexual energy and reproductive health; perceptions and first impressions of others; your capacity for joy and pleasure; as well as your finances, i.e., your ability to receive financial abundance. It provides energy to the reproductive organs, legs, and the glands.
The Solar Plexus Chakra (yellow) is located between your navel and the bottom of your ribcage. This is your seat of personal power, and also a significant source of psychic intuition, which you may know as your “gut instinct”. This chakra is also responsible for all of the major organs in your torso (stomach, liver, gall bladder, pancreas), including your digestive system.
The Heart Chakra (green or pink) is located in the centre of your chest, so not exactly where your physical heart is (a little to the left of the centre), but very close. The Heart Chakra is responsible for your heart, lungs, cardiovascular system, respiratory system, and circulatory system; as well as your ability to love and be loved, give and receive, and of course your capacity for self-love and self-acceptance. It represents your emotions, love, devotion, spiritual growth, and compassion. The Heart Chakra is also connected to your arms and hands (from which we offer our service to the world, and from which Reiki healers channel Reiki.
The Throat Chakra (blue) is located at the base of the throat, and is associated with the neck, throat, ears, and mouth, as well as the thyroid gland. The Throat Chakra is responsible for your ability to communicate and express yourself clearly and with authenticity. Your ability to be creative and to “walk your talk” also stems from this chakra.
The Third Eye Chakra (indigo) is located in your forehead, between your eyebrows. This chakra intersects with your pineal gland, and is associated with your eyes and head, i.e., your optical and neurological health. It represents psychic perception, telepathy, and ESP. Many people know this chakra as the “psychic centre”, which is certainly true (just don’t forget that your Solar Plexus Chakra also plays a huge role in your psychic sensitivity). When clear, this chakra can help you make wiser decisions because it allows you to see the bigger picture, as well as see into others’ true intentions. This chakra supplies energy to the spine, lower brain, left eye, pituitary gland, nose, ears, and Central Nervous System.
The Crown Chakra (violet) is located at the crown of your head, and rather than running from front to back, this chakra runs from the top of your head, downwards (similar to the Root Chakra, which runs from the base upwards). The Crown Chakra is responsible for the unification of all of your energy centres, self-actualization, and ultimately, enlightenment. This is the seat of spirituality and oneness. This chakra supplies energy to the pineal glands, upper brain, and right eye.
What About Chakra 0…?
The Earth Star Chakra (black/no colour) is located below your feet, about a foot into the Earth. This chakra is also known as the Foot Chakra, and it is responsible for supporting you in standing and living in your truth, as well as realizing and following your life purpose. Activating this chakra allows you to have your own unique life experience, and to manifest your desires in a timely manner. This is a little-known chakra, which you may or may not choose to work with. Personally, my life has been transformed by working with this chakra, and I always set the intention to ground my clients after every energy healing session by sending Reiki to their Earth Star Chakras.
There are many ways to work with the chakras, from Yoga asana practices, meditations, visualizations, crystal healing, and even aromatherapy and herbalism. With all of the recommendations available, “chakra work” can get pretty convoluted, but it doesn’t have to be that way! Any practice that you enjoy can be a method for connecting with and balancing your chakras. Simply bringing your awareness to the chakras is enough to stimulate the healing process.
To make things simple, I’ve called the work that I do with the chakras (on myself and with my clients) simply, “Chakra Therapy”, which is obviously a rather unoriginal phrase, but it does get the point across 😉 Far from being a medical practice, Chakra Therapy is simply an energetic way of connecting with the chakras and boosting your body’s innate capacity to heal itself.
Over the next few weeks, I will be sharing more information about the chakras and Chakra Therapy, including deep dive posts into each major chakra, and how to work directly with the chakra system using Yoga, fitness, crystals, aromatherapy, and meditation.
I hope working with the chakras changes your life as it has mine 🙂
Image Credit: Matias Rengel
This post was originally published on April 30, 2019.