You may have heard the word chakra used during your weekly yoga class, but you may not fully understand what it means. There’s a lot to learn about chakras and how they work to help with your mediation journey, so let’s start with the basics.
What Does Chakra Mean?
The word chakra means “wheel” in Sanskrit. It describes the energy centers in the physical body. Through meditation and practice, we can use chakras to help us with energy flow and alignment.
The chakra energy systems control physical, spiritual, and psychological functions.
They are a part of every aspect of us as humans, how we feel and connect with the world around us. We can use our chakras to help with stress and increase our energy throughout the day.
The Seven Chakras
There are seven main chakras, and to develop a relationship with each one, we have to explore them individually.
- The first chakra is the root symbol. This chakra is often associated with the color red and is called the Muladhara chakra in Sanskrit. This chakra is rooted towards the base of your spine and is in charge of your sense of security. It also represents stability and foundational energy.
- The sacral chakra is the hub for your creative energy and is related to the color orange. It’s physically located right near your reproductive organs, and the Sanskrit word for it is Svadhisthana. The symbol for this chakra is a lotus flower, and it represents the cycle of life. The sacral chakra is all about your relationship with yourself and the others around you.
- The solar plexus chakra is associated with feelings of willpower and loving yourself. This chakra develops during your teen years and into your early twenties. It’s located at your belly button and is represented by ten petals. This is related to the ten pranas in your body, which are part of your life force energy.
- The heart chakra is located in your heart, and it is connected to how you experience love. It’s associated with the color green and is developed between the ages of 21-28. The symbol for this chakra is two triangles representing the merging of the upper and lower chakras of your body.
- The throat chakra is also called the Vishuddha chakra and is associated with energy that moves upward. The throat chakra is in charge of communication and collective truth. The petals of this chakra’s symbol represent the 16 vowels in Sanskrit.
- The third eye chakra is associated with the color purple and is related to wisdom. This chakra develops later in life and is also called the Ajna chakra. The symbol is an upside-down triangle that represents merging your divine consciousness with the upper chakras. The third eye helps you use your intuition in all aspects of your life.
- The last chakra is the crown chakra. Otherwise known as Sahasrara, it is connected to your pineal gland at the top of your head, hence the name. It’s associated with the color violet and matures when you’re in your 40s.
Understanding all of the chakras and building relationships with them can be a gratifying experience for meditation. They can help make your life easier and allow you to understand yourself better. Try to focus on which chakras specifically resonate with your energy to uplift your soul and mind.
Why Should You Do Chakra Meditation?
When you meditate using your chakras, you are using every part of your body. It’s a fantastic way to get to know yourself better and open up a world of self-discovery and self-love. Chakra meditation can allow you to experience heightened levels of peace and energy within yourself. This allows you to get a better night’s sleep and handle your stress with ease.
Using your chakras correctly can take practice, but you can use them as a toolkit in your daily life. It can allow you to have more compassion towards everything around you and develop a stronger sense of willpower. Chakra meditation can also help you enjoy more of your everyday life and transform negative energy into positive experiences.
Preparing For Meditation
The best way to prepare yourself for chakra meditation is through mindful thinking and breathing. Find a quiet area that you won’t be disturbed in and find relaxing meditation music to listen to that you enjoy. Make sure that the clothes you’re wearing are comfortable and loose, allowing you to stretch.
For beginners, about 20-30 minutes is appropriate for meditation. You can always try to do more, but don’t overdo it the first time. Patience is of the utmost importance for inner reflection. With practice, meditation becomes more comfortable, but it can be difficult to keep your focus.
Steps Of Chakra Meditation
The actual steps of your meditation can depend on the person doing it. Visual learners may find it helpful to think about the chakra’s colors while meditating to help them focus. Some people like to touch the area of their body where each chakra comes from.
A common misconception about chakra meditation is that you have to close your eyes. However, this isn’t necessary, and you can instead have a focal point like a flame of a candle to hone in on.
Start by focusing on the base or root chakra and then work your way up the body. Focus on your breathing and visualizing each chakra and the brightness of them. Take a step back within your mind and ask yourself if all of your chakras feel aligned.
How To Know If Chakras Are Aligned
Since each chakra is different, there are multiple ways to determine whether or not they’re aligned.
- Root chakra: You’ll feel comfortable with yourself and feel relatively stress-free in all the areas of your life.
- Sacral chakra: You’ll be flowing with creativity and problem-solving abilities. You’ll also see more expression in your everyday life and feel more happiness.
- Solar plexus chakra: You’ll feel more confident and capable.
- Heart chakra: You’ll feel more connected with the world around you and have stronger feelings of self-love.
- Throat chakra: You’ll be able to express yourself more clearly to others.
- Third eye chakra: Your intuition will be your best friend. You might also be able to pick up on more intangible concepts.
- Crown chakra: You feel balanced and accepting of yourself and the world around you.
Using Chakra Stones
Each of the chakras is associated with a color, so a crystal with the corresponding color may help you to get in tune with your chakra. For example, the sacral chakra is associated with the color orange, so you could use Carnelian, Sunstone, or Orange Calcite to help connect you with this chakra.
You can use these crystals during meditation in a variety of ways. You can place them on your desk at work or home or wear them as jewelry. It’s easy to harness the crystal's benefits while you wear them as necklaces or rings. You can also hold them while you meditate or keep them in your pocket. Don’t forget to regularly cleanse your crystals at least once a month to renew their energy.
There is no “right” way to meditate using chakras, as it is an extremely personal experience. There are many different ways to achieve inner peace and happiness using this technique. Remember to practice and be patient so that you can use all of the chakras in your body to gain a better understanding of yourself and the world around you.