In holistic health and spiritual communities, the word “chakra” frequently graces conversation. And while some individuals within these circles may have a comprehensive understanding of what the chakras are and how best to empower them, the majority of people have little to no understanding of the power the chakras possess.
If you are one of those people who need some more insight to fully comprehend this topic or are just looking for some key information to refresh and refocus your chakra practice, look no further.
What Are Chakras?
“Chakra” is a term that comes from the ancient Sanskrit language, literally translating to English as “wheel.” And when you look at artistic renderings of the chakras, you can probably understand why. Running vertically through the center of the human body from the base of the spine to the top of the head, the chakras are energy centers that are whirling, spinning and driving the physical and spiritual experience forward.
Just as the universe and everything in it are composed of and filled to the brim with energy, the human body is no different. These precious energy centers are a way to harness and utilize this life force. Prana – what this life energy is often called – is continually churning and spinning through your body within these seven centers. When properly aligned and balanced, this prana provides and sustains all aspects of existence for mind, body, and spirit.
The more you know about your seven chakras, the more you can tend to your health and wellbeing and ensure that these energy centers are flowing freely and in balance. There are many practices that you can seek out or instill in your daily life to promote chakra health and in turn promote wellbeing in every aspect of your life.
The 7 Chakras Explained
1. Root Chakra – Muladhara
- Color: Red
- Location: Base of spine flowing up to below the navel
Beginning at the base of the spine, the Root Chakra, called Muladhara in Sanskrit, is the energy center of grounding. When seated for meditation, this part of the body is nestled against the earth and supports the being, both physically and energetically. It acts as an energetic bridge between the body and the force of the earth below, and it promotes a sense of security within existence.
When everything is in harmony with the Root Chakra, you will feel a sense of accomplishment and contentment when it comes to matters of survival on earth, such as safety, money, and shelter.
It is not uncommon for this chakra to be unbalanced though, because a lot of pressure and strain can be put upon it. If overactive, you may experience anxiety and feelings of uncertainty about your security. If underactive, you may easily drift from reality into day-dreaming and have trouble focusing.
How To Balance Root Chakra:
- Utilize the energy of the chakra and tend to your security needs.
- Practice prayer and meditation.
- Commit acts of kindness to promote energy movement into other centers.
- Spend time in nature and get physical exercise.
2. Sacral Chakra – Svadhishana
- Color: Orange
- Location: Just below the belly button to its center
The Sacral Chakra houses energy for human identity and creativity. This is where the force to enjoy life stems from, and it supports people in their pursuit of pleasurable experiences such as sex.
When this chakra is in balance and harmony, you will fully enjoy and nurture practices of sexuality and other pleasurable aspects of your existence, without overdoing it. The creative pursuits and focus on happiness and pleasure will bring a sense of fulfillment to your life.
But when this chakra is overactive, you may tend to overindulge and become glutinous. If underactive, you may experience a low sex drive, depression, or feel sluggish and uninspired in your life.
How To Balance Sacral Chakra
- Be intentional about drawing energy to the heart, when overactive.
- Create time to enjoy life and indulge in pleasurable activities, when underactive.
- Perform hip-opening yoga postures.
3. Solar Plexus Chakra – Manipura
- Color: Yellow
- Location: Belly Button to the connection of ribs in the base of your chest
From the Solar Plexus Chakra comes an individual’s sense of true identity, personal power, and genuine self-confidence. Whenever you have a positive or negative gut feeling about something, this is where that energy stems from. In actuality, a gut feeling is your body using its innate wisdom and power to guide you towards or away from a choice.
When balanced, this chakra will give you confidence and self-empowerment. You will feel steadfast in your decisions and have a strong sense of personal truth and purpose.
If this chakra is overactive, you may feel quick to anger and attempt to extend your power over the lives of others. You also could suffer from digestive or kidney issues. When underactive, this chakra leads people to feel a lack of self-assuredness. You may have trouble making decisions and feel insecure or needy.
How To Balance Solar Plexus Chakra
- Meditate on love and kindness to guide that inner power to a place of compassion for yourself and others.
- Make a list of things you are good at and proud of yourself for. Focus on those aspects of your life and draw power from them.
4. Heart Chakra – Anahata
- Color: Green
- Location: Directly over the heart, spreading down through the breastbone and up into the throat
The Heart Chakra is the center of love, compassion, and kindness within the body. Here, those attributes are empowered and promote love for others as well as a love for the self. This center can also promote healing.
When in balance, the Heart Chakra allows you to choose compassion and love even in tough situations. You can share love with yourself and others equally.
But when this center is overactive, people often put others far before themselves and sacrifice their own well-being for the sake of another person’s love. If underactive, it may feel as if you’ve built a wall around yourself, and love cannot get in. You may feel far from family and friends and out of touch with your body.
How To Balance Heart Chakra
- Focus on yourself to balance this chakra. Take a bath, do something you enjoy, and meditate on self-love.
- Focus on loving yourself first to energize this chakra. With self-love and acceptance, one will be able to knock down the barriers to the heart and begin spreading compassion again.
5. Throat Chakra – Vishuddha
- Color: Blue
- Location: From your collarbones, through the throat, and up to the eyes
The Throat Chakra is all about your personal voice. You may have a sense of your self-truth, but being able to voice that truth with confidence is half the battle. This chakra lets you speak your truth with compassion and clarity, no apology and no belligerence.
When this chakra is in balance, you will feel confident to speak your inner truth and share the wisdom that can enlighten and support those around you.
If you’ve spent a lot of your life feeling like your voice isn’t valued, this chakra may be overactive. You may begin to speak over others and develop throat pain or even dental issues. When underactive, voices have been belittled so much that people no longer speak up and share thoughts and feelings. This can lead to digestive issues from the trickling back of unspoken truths.
How To Balance Throat Chakra
- Think before you speak. Is what you will say helpful and compassionate?
- Practice expressing your truth and speaking up, even if no one is there to hear. Journal or express yourself through art.
6. Third Eye Chakra – Ajna
- Color: Indigo
- Location: Between your eyes, radiating to your mouth and the top of your head
Psychic energy and intuition all stem from the power of The Third Eye. This chakra allows people to perceive energy beyond the physical world and connect to other senses.
When in balance, The Third Eye is a beacon for spiritual enlightenment. You will feel completely in tune with the physical and energetic world.
For most people, an overactive Third Eye chakra is very unlikely, because it takes great diligence and practice to achieve that level of connection. It is much more likely for people to have an underactive Third Eye, meaning you may only focus on your physical existence within the material world and disregard psychic signs and happenings.
How To Balance Third Eye Chakra
- Develop a practice of dedicated solitary meditation.
- Listen to your spirit and focus on cues from outside the physical world.
7. Crown Chakra – Sahasrara
- Color: White
- Location: Top of the head, down to the eyes, and then up into the infinite universe above
The Crown Chakra connects human consciousness to the consciousness of the entire universe through energetic pull. This is a concept that is simple to spell out, but often takes years of dedicated time and attention to truly understand and harness.
This chakra is rarely ever truly balanced, but the goal of life is not to attain but to strive for harmony of the Crown Chakra. In the constant pursuit of enlightenment, people live full and beautiful lives.
The seat of all universal energy, the Crown Chakra is never overactive since it is open to unlimited power. To have an underactive Crown Chakra is to be human. While some people may be closer to achieving total enlightenment than others, all people are on the same journey.
There is not really one way to energize The Crown Chakra, so instead, people seeking a universally connected consciousness should focus on balancing and energizing all the other chakras of the body. By aligning all the components of your physical, emotional, and spiritual existence, you are bringing yourself one step closer to the ultimate enlightenment.