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Derived from Sanskrit, the term Chakra means ‘wheel’. In Hindu, tantric/yogic traditions and other belief systems are energy points or nodes in the subtle body. They are the meeting points of the subtle (non-physical) energy channels called nadiis through which the life force (prana) (non-physical) or vital energy (non-physical) travels.
The chakras are formed at the junction of three connected energy shafts that ascend the spine, one on each side of the central channel, the Shushumna. The two lesser channels of energy – the Pingala on the right and Ida on the left, run parallel to the spinal cord. Chakras both take up and collect prana (life force energy) and transform and pass on energy. Our material bodies could not exist without them for they serve as gateways for the flow of energy and life into our physical bodies.
There exist seven most important chakras— Root or Base Chakra, Spleen Chakra, Solar Plexus Chakra, Heart Chakra, Throat Chakra, Brow or third eye Chakra, Crown Chakra.
Each chakra has a number of specific qualities that correspond to the refinement of energy from the base-level material-self identity, located at the first chakras, up to the higher vibration spirit-level awareness of being at our crown. These energetic centers represent our highest level of integration split, prism like, into a spectrum of colours. The lower chakras are associated with fundamental emotions and needs, for the energy here vibrates at a lower frequency and is therefore denser in nature. The finer energies of the upper chakras correspond to our higher mental and spiritual aspirations and faculties.
The openness and flow of energy through our chakras determines our state of health and balance. Knowledge of our more subtle energy system empowers us to maintain balance and harmony on the physical, mental and spiritual level. All meditation and yoga systems seek to balance out the energy of the chakras by purifying the lower energies and guiding them upwards. Through the use of grounding, creating “internal space,” and living consciously with an awareness of how we acquire and spend our energy we become capable of balancing our life force with our mental, physical and spiritual selves.
- Compiled by Ayurved Sutra Team / Post : Shruti P