Emotions and the physical body are intricately connected. Learn about your energetic anatomy and gain access to life-changing knowledge about yourself.
There are eight centers of energy in the body that support human vitality, wellbeing and life purpose. Understanding and relating to them will transform your life.
In this section, you will find helpful information on the chakras whether you are a beginner or a seasoned practitioner.
For many, the idea of interacting with energy and the chakra system in particular can feel daunting and unrelatable. But, as you learn to apply these concepts to your everyday experience, you start to get it.
The chakra system offers us an energetic understanding of ourselves and how each aspect of life is intricately dependent on the others. There are endless advantages to understanding each chakra’s qualities and characteristics and applying them to your self-care practice.
What is a Chakra?
In Kundalini yoga we reference seven chakras or energy centers in the body, starting from the base of the spine to the crown of the head, and an additional energy center, the eighth chakra, in the electromagnetic field that surrounds the body, also referred to as the aura.
Although we are unable to actually see these wheels of energy, they are an important part of what keeps us vibrant and healthy.
The Sanskrit translation of chakra is “wheel,” and it is through the movement of these wheels of energy that prana, or life force, is accessed. Our overall well-being depends on this flow of energy. Each of the primary chakras directly relates to the physical aspects of our body—the nervous system, organs, and hormonal and glandular systems—and influences our emotions and psychological well-being as well.
In order to access the qualities of the chakras, it is helpful to create a relationship with each of them. To do this, bring your focus inward and inquire about each of the energy centers as they relate to your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual life. Try using a sensitivity scale as you do your inquiry for each: 0 = little to no sensation to 10 = very strong sensation or discomfort. This will help you identify your dominant chakra, an area in the body that is calling for more attention and healing.
The key to healing the energetic body is awareness. Once you understand that there is no separation between the mind, body, and spirit, the faster you will move through physical and emotional disruptions that keep you stuck.
Kundalini yoga supports and strengthens the chakra system, which allows energy to flow and stay balanced. When we feel complete balance in the chakra system, we experience ourselves in an empowered state, which in turn awakens feelings of compassion, forgiveness, empathy, and love.
The chakra system is a portal to greater inner knowledge and to the understanding that all aspects of life are intricately dependent upon one another. As you increase your knowledge of the chakras and the energy system overall, you will have the tools you need to build your self-care practice and a strong foundation for well-being.
This is the first article in an eight-part series on the chakras. As my experience with my energy system deepens, I hope to help you understand how important it is to harness and tend to your own energy and how this simple awareness can have potent effects on your life.
The Eight Primary Chakras*
The Lower Triangle
The first three chakras apply to the physical needs of the body and the ability to tend to the basic needs of life.
First Chakra: Security and Survival
Foundation, survival, security, habit, self-acceptance
Location: End of the spine between the anus and sexual organs
Organs/Glands: Organs of elimination
Strengthening Color: Red
Supportive Poses: Crow Pose, Chair Pose, Body Drops, Frog Pose, Front Stretches, Lying on
Stomach, Root Lock
Second Chakra: Creativity and Personal Truth
To feel, to experience, to create
Locaon: Kidneys and bladder
Organs/Glands: Sex organs, reproductive glands, kidneys, bladder
Strengthening Color: Orange
Supportive Poses: Frog Pose, Cobra Pose, Butterfly, Sat Kriya, Cat-Cow, Pelvic Lifts
Third Chakra: Action and Balance
Willpower, personal power, commitment
Location: Naval center
Organs/Glands: Solar plexus, liver, gallbladder, spleen, digestive organs, pancreas, adrenals
Strengthening Color: Yellow
Supportive Poses: Stretch Pose, Sat Kriya, Bow Pose, Diaphragm Lock, Breath of Fire
The Heart Center, or fourth chakra, is the balance point in the body between the flow of the upper energies of the Heavens and the lower energies of the Earth, where experience shifts from “me to we” or “me to thee.”
Fourth Chakra: Love and Compassion
Awakening to spiritual awareness, forgiveness, and service
Location: Middle of the chest on the breast bone at the level of the nipples
Organs/Glands: Heart, lungs, thymus gland
Strengthening Color: Green
Supportive Poses: Ego Eradicator, Baby Pose, Yoga Mudra, all pranayama, all arm exercises
The chakras in the upper triangle and the aura—which combines the effects of the other seven chakras—accumulate, create and refine the energy. There are no specific gross elements associated with the sixth, seventh, and eighth chakras, as they correspond to the more subtle realms.
Fifth Chakra: Projective Power of the Word
Hearing and speaking the Truth, the Teacher
Organs/Glands: Trachea, throat, cervical vertebrae, thyroid
Strengthening Color: Light blue
Supportive Poses: All chanting, Cobra Pose, Plow Pose, Shoulder Stand, Cat-Cow, Neck Lock
Sixth Chakra: Intuition, Wisdom, and Identity
The union of opposites, understanding one’s purpose
Location: Between the eyebrows (the “third eye”)
Organs/Glands: Brain, pituitary gland
Supportive Poses: Focus on the Third Eye, Kirtan Kriya, Archer Pose, Whistle Breaths, all exercises with forehead resting on the floor
Seventh (Crown) Chakra: Humility and Vastness
Transcendence, the Tenth Gate, the seat of the soul
Location: Crown of the head
Organs/Glands: Brain, pineal gland
Strengthening Color: Violet
Supportive Poses: Ego Eradicator, Sat Kriya, Concentrating on the Tip of the Nose, All meditation
Eighth Chakra: The Aura
Location: Electromagnetic field surrounding the physical body
Strengthening Color: White
Supportive Poses: Triangle Pose, Ego Eradicator, Archer Pose, all arm exercises, all meditation
*From Kundalini Yoga: The Flow of Eternal Power by Shakti Parwha Kaur and The KRI Aquarian Teacher Training Level 1 Manual