A chakra (pronounced ‘cha-kra’) is an energy centre within the auric and physical body. The term chakra, derived from Sanskrit, means spinning wheel. A wheel spins like a vortex, or a whirl wind, as each chakra is a disc or node that serves as the nonphysical highway through which energy travels. These energy centers, when even, restore harmony, which translate into a sense of well-being, health and oneness. Though we commonly talk about the seven main chakras, there are 114 chakras in the body and many more on the outside of the body. However, let us focus on just the seven to get us started.
Chakras restoration is not some hippy dippy trend or movement; its roots lie deep within pre-historic Indian society. Though empirically we cannot prove that chakras reside within us, we certainly cannot refute that energy exists and influences us. For example, cast your mind to when you were in a situation with a bunch of friends and suddenly someone that hurt you entered that space. Remember how your tone changed? How the conversation shifted, as did your gaze and body language? The atmosphere and energy changed in that space. Chakras are the space or house for energy and it can be stored or transformed by traveling through us. Chakras create an equanimity between the mind and body but when blockages occur or Chakra constipation, then disharmony can manifest within us.
It is important to establish what each Chakra represents and how it corresponds to each part of the body. If a Chakra is blocked, the first step of removing that blockage is to acknowledge it and do something about it yourself. Here is a guide to opening and activating those chakras – DIY style.
- The Root Chakra (Muladhara)
Colors: Red and black
The root chakra is situated at the base of the spine or the coccyx. It is the centre for innocence, security and stability. It enables us to connect with our ancestors and helps keep us grounded. Blockages in the root chakra are associated with anxiety, depression, pain, shock and trauma. A lack of identity and knowledge of thyself are indicators with this blockage.
- To help remove these blockages you need to firstly face those fears one way or other. This could be by talking about them or befriending those fears to eventually let them go.
- Receiving a hug from a loved one helps as it produces oxytocin enabling us to gain trust and restoring the sense of belonging.
- Connecting and keeping in touch with relatives or learning about your native culture, language or paying a visit to your ancestral home helps keep you rooted.
- To feel more grounded try earthing (barefoot walking) and mediation on the grass.
- Putting aside some money each month in a savings account can help us build a sense of security.
Food/ diet: Root vegetables, beets, onions, radishes, ginger, apples and pomegranates.
Stones: Red Jasper, garnet and smokey quartz.
- The Sacral Chakra (Svadhisthana)
Colors: Amber and orange
The sacral chakra is based in the sacrum region. It is the centre of sexuality, libido and creativity. Blockages may have resulted from having creativity curbed, feeling shame, guilt or sexual abuse.
- To remove blockages, revert to creativity! Write, draw, paint and create. Do anything that involves making a mess, being arty and expressive.
- Dance sensually and/or dress up just for you! Taking erotic pictures of yourself (for your eyes only) helps unlock this region and empowers the Sacral Chakra.When sensuality is suppressed because of shame, this blocks up the energy flow. Walk around the house in the nude. This is very liberating and you should help you love yourself in your own flesh.
Food/ diet: Mangoes, oranges, pumpkins, papaya, nuts, seeds and coconuts.
Stones: Carnelian, citrine and orange calcite.
- The Solar Plexis Chakra (Manipura)
Colours: Yellow and mustard
The solar plexis is based in the abdomen, is the power house and home to our wisdom; hence the term “gut instinct.” Blockages are associated with lack of energy, being fearful and a lack of confidence.
- To remove blockages, do core workouts or take up an activity and note the progress you make, in turn boosting energy levels and self-esteem.
- Keep a note of times of when you achieved something and look back at them to motivate you for future challenges.
- Talk kindly to yourself in the mirror. It can be things like ‘you look great today’ or ‘you managed to meet that deadline, well done.’ Whatever you say to yourself the body hears and remembers. Speak kindly to yourself.
Food/ diet: Spelt, oats brown rice, maca, yellow dhal, plantain and lemons.
Stones: Topaz, sunstone and tiger’s eye.
- The Heart Chakra (Anahata)
Colours: Green and rose
The heart chakra is based in the thoracic regions where the heart is. This centre holds space for love, trust, acceptance and healing. Blockages are associated with loss, rejection, lack of trust and being heart broken.
- To remove blockages, write gratitude avowals. Be appreciative for everything you have and you will gradually start feeling more content with these affirmations.
- Do some voluntary work. Give-back is not only rewarding but it opens opportunities to make new connections and friends.
- Don’t shut people out as you will only attract the same back. Be open and accept that it’s ok to be vulnerable at times. By taking risks, you will discover who has the potential to be in your life and not. You may even meet your soulmate. You won’t know until you take that initial risk.
Food/ diet: Kale, callaloo, chard, green lentils, apples and kiwis.
Stones: Emerald, jade and rose quartz.
- The Throat Chakra (Vishudda)
Colours: Light shades of blue
The throat chakra is in the throat and is the centre for communication and inspiration. Blockages are associated with coughs, colds, an inability to express your thoughts and passiveness
- To remove blockages, simply sing! Busting out in song releases feel good endorphins and promotes mental health. No matter how good, bad and terrible you are, singing opens those organs of articulation.
- Breathing exercises like pranayama helps those intercostal muscles and breathing apparatus. Simple exhalations (kapalbhati breathing) dispels toxins from the lungs and throat clearing up the airways.
- Practice assertiveness and start saying no when you really mean it. Don’t get dragged into agreeing to something you do not want to do. This takes some practice. You have the right say no and disagree, so be true to you.
- Write a journal or a blog on your inner thoughts, experiences and feelings. This helps unlock suppressed feelings and is very cathartic. Take up drama. Drama is a powerful vehicle of self-expression and for all those quiet shy types, you might just surprise yourself!
Food/ diet: Kelp, figs, warm beverages, peppermints tea and coconut juice. Avoid harsh flavors, caffeine and diary.
Stones: Turquoise, blue lace agate and sodalite.
- The Third Eye Chakra (Ajna)
Colors: Indigo and dark blue
The third eye is based between the brows. This chakra governs our awareness, intellect and intuition.
- Blockages are associated with lack of concentration, poor memory, restlessness and inability to make decisions or making bad ones.
- To remove blockages, try an Indian head massage as this helps improve circulation and boosts memory.
- Activities that require concentration like sewing, knitting, puzzles and problem-solving help open those pineal channels and strengthen intellect.
- Mediation of any kind activates the third eye. It does take some practice, but there are some excellent online guided meditations. Find one that resonates with you.
- Sun gaze for the first 15 minutes of sunrise and the last 15 minutes of sunset. It helps activate the third eye.
Foods/ diet: Organic foods, cruelty free foods. Blueberries, eggplants, raw cacao and filtered water. Avoid fluoride as this calcifies the pineal gland.
Stones: Lapiz lazuli, labradorite and kyanite.
- The Crown Chakra (Sahaswara)
Colour: Purple, white and colorless
The crown chakra is situation on the crown of the head and beyond. It is our divine connection between the cosmos and links to our spirituality and awareness.
Blockages are associated with this chakra are a lack of hope, depression, loneliness, dizziness and headaches.
- To remove blockages, explore your space in the vast universe. Ask questions on a spiritual level and see how the universe responds. Look out for signs or try cosmic ordering. Remember how small we are on this tiny planet.
- Gardening and planting seeds enable us to watch life grow and deepens our sense of meaning of life.
- Try deep relaxing and hypnotic mediation before you sleep and see where it leads you. There are some great online sources. Have a search and see which one suits you.
Food/ diet: Vegan diet, raw foods, fasting, detoxification, fresh air and natural sunlight.
Stones: Amethyst, clear quartz and opal.
You know your body better than anyone. Seek within yourself first before seeking outwards. This guide is a simple first port of call in tackling issues that upset the chakras. If there are continuing issues then seek further advice from a reiki master or a chakra healer.
Peace and Namaste.
Author: Reena Jaisiah
Author Bio: Reena Jaisiah is a UK-born woman of Indus Valley heritage and is a qualified health & Lifestyle advisory. Reena spends most of her spare time making organic natural remedies and cosmetics.