Energy Centres And The 7 Chakras Explained
In Hinduism and Buddhism, the concept of chakras is well established. If you’ve done yoga classes or reiki, you too may be familiar with the concept of chakras. But if you’re yet to come across this topic, there is much for you to learn, and it can be extremely insightful when you do, as the chakras impact many aspects of our health, behavior and mood, amongst other things. In this article we’re going to cover everything you need to know about chakras.
What are chakras?
The Sanskrit word ‘chakra’ can be translated as ‘wheel’ or ‘disk’, and refers to the spinning energy centers in the body that correspond to certain organs or nerves. These chakras run vertically through the body and have different colors associated with them, as well as different physical symptoms, emotions and mental and spiritual states associated with them. See diagram below.
The concept of chakras originated in India between 1500 and 500 BC and is referenced in the Vedas, the oldest text known in Hinduism. Since then, the chakras have maintained their position as one of the most influential aspects of eastern medicine, due to their powerful effects on our health and wellbeing.
What are the names of the different chakras?
As shown in the diagram above, there are seven chakras. Starting from the bottom of your body to the top, here are the names of the chakras, what they are associated with in the body and what happens when they are blocked:
The root chakra is at the base of your spine and is believed to act as the foundation for your life. It keeps you rooted into the earth, like a tree, so that you can withstand the storms of your life. This chakra is essential for feeling secure and stable in your position in life, throughout good times and bad times.
When it’s blocked: Anxiety, restlessness, fear, instability, colon and bladder issues
This chakra is located just below your belly button, and is connected to your sexual and creative energy. This chakra allows you to connect emotionally with others and is activated when you are having fun.
When it’s blocked: A lack of inspiration, depression, sexual dysfunction, addiction
The solar plexus chakra
This chakra is located from the navel to the ribcage and is closely linked to your digestion and metabolic health. It’s also associated with your confidence and self esteem.
When it’s blocked: Low self esteem, digestive issues like bloating or constipation, a lack of boundaries, anger.
The heart chakra is (as you may have guessed) where your heart is. This chakra is physically linked to your endocrine and lymphatic systems, lungs and chest, and emotionally linked to contentment, spiritual alignment, love, compassion and self awareness.
When it’s blocked: Depression, hate, holding grudges, inability to form and maintain relationships, loneliness, poor circulation, heart and lung conditions, blood pressure issues.
Located in your throat, this chakra is connected to your thyroid health, jaw, neck, mouth, tongue and larynx. This chakra is all about how you present yourself to the world, and if this mirrors who you truly are. It’s in control of all communication.
When it’s blocked: Inability to speak your truth, focus and attention difficulties, speech impediments, fearing judgement from society.
Between the eyebrows, this chakra is your intuition, believed to read between the lines and pick up on the subconscious workings of our society. It’s physically connected to the brain, eyes and pineal and pituitary glands.
When it’s blocked: Trouble trusting your ‘gut feelings’, inner turmoil, a lack of imagination, migraines, inability to concentrate.
Located on the crown of your head, this chakra is all about enlightenment and spirituality. When this chakra is energized, you will feel a greater level of consciousness that connects you to the world around you.
When it’s blocked: Isolation, emotional distress, disconnection from society.
How do our chakras impact us?
The belief is that having open, aligned and balanced chakras, energy can flow freely within the body, allowing each chakra to function optimally for you. As shown above, each chakra has the power to impact our lives for the better, or be detrimental to our physical or mental health. This all depends on how freely energy can flow through.
Your chakras can get blocked due to physical, emotional, psychological, spiritual or energetic reasons – including physical injury, trauma, tumors, toxins, poor diet, sedentary lifestyle, overworking, addiction behaviors or absorbing energy from negative people in our lives.
To reopen the chakras, allowing energy to flow freely to feel your best, there are things you can do. For example:
- Breathing exercises
- Dismantling ingrained negative beliefs
- Dealing with emotional trauma
- Nutritious foods
- Connecting with nature
If you feel like your chakras are blocked, practicing some of these dietary and lifestyle habits can help to free your chakras so energy can flow throughout your body. Even if you are skeptical of energy healing, being open minded and seeking to deepen your relationship with your body and mind is beneficial for all, so try it out sometime. See if you feel better for it.