Seven Chakras of Body, Mind & Soul

According to the Hindu belief system, Chakras are the centers of life force, or vital points of energy in a human body by which energy flows through.  The function of the chakras (each one relating to the other chakras) is to draw in vitalising energy to keep the spiritual, mental, emotional and physical health of the body in balance. The chakras have also been used to identify states and stages of consciousness, developmental periods of individual growth and maturity, and eras of human civilization.

The chakra system shows the way to reach the heights of pure awareness and the way down to the realities of the material world.

The journey upward (mukti/moksha - freedom) begins with the body and the material world, entering subtler and higher planes of consciousness with each step upward. It enables you to break free from limitations that hold you back from spiritual realization and liberates your from fixed forms and attachments.

In downward path (bhukti - enjoyment/material sense gratification) is the flow of individual consciousness in the vast plane of awareness as structuring thoughts or ideas. This current of manifestation gives thoughts shapes and forms, moving them into words and then into actions, until they are dense enough to manifest on the material plane. It is by this path that we enjoy the play of life.

When your chakras are aligned and open, your mind and body work in harmony, making your actions more effective in the world (inner world of your experience and the outer world of your environment). Blocked energy in our Chakras can often lead to illness so it's important to understand what each Chakra represents and what we can do to keep this energy flowing freely. Blocks in the chakras can take many forms. A chakra may be deficient in its functioning, meaning there is constriction that results in too little energy flowing in and out of that chakra, or it may be excessive, meaning there is too much energy flowing. The goal of chakra healing is to balance the energy flow through each chakra.  There are seven main energy centers of the body.

1. Root Chakra - Represents our foundation and feeling of being grounded and secure.
Color: Red
Red relates to self awareness. It is the area of survival and stability and your place on this earth.  The colour red provides the power from the earth and gives energy on all levels. It connects us to our physical body. Everything that is to be commenced needs the life vitality of red.
Location: Base of spine in tailbone area.
Emotional issues: Survival issues such as financial independence, money, and food.
Related Gland: Adrenal gland
Healing: Bridge Pose - Setu Bandha Sarvangasana slowly opening up your abdomen. Practice stillness-simplicity and feel the ground beneath your feet. Believe strogly that you are protected and secure no matter what as a divine being of light.
            - security
            - courage
            - strength of will
            - pioneering      
            - insecurity
            - self pitying
            - aggressive
            - fearful

2. Sacral Chakra - Our ability to feel creative, sexual and accept change - accept others & new experiences.
Color: Orange
Orange is the best emotional stimulant. It connects us to our senses and helps to remove inhibitions and makes us social.
Location: Lower abdomen, about 2 inches below the navel and 2 inches in.
Emotional issues: Sense of abundance, well-being, pleasure, sexuality.
Related organs: Uterus, Large bowel, Prostate, Ovaries and Testes.
Healing:  Pelvic thrusts & Bhujangasana - Cobra Yoga Pose. Make time for your outlets, passions, practices. Continue to create and express yourself.
            - sociable
            - creative
            - joyous
            - independent
            - withdrawn
            - destructive
            - despondent
            - over-dependent   

3. Solar Plexus Chakra - Our ability to be confident and in-control of our lives.
Color: Yellow
The yellow energy connects us to our mental self. How we feel about ourselves and how we feel others perceive us. This is the area of the personality, the ego and the intellect.  Gives us clarity of thought, increases awareness, and stimulates interest and curiosity.
Location: Upper abdomen in the stomach area.
Emotional issues: Self-worth, self-confidence, self-esteem.
Related Gland and Organs: Pancreas, liver, spleen, stomach and small intestine.
Healing Exercises:  Navasana - Boat Yoga Pose. Why do you aim to accomplish all that you do? Focus on what's important and let the worries go. Harness your determination on that.
            - confident
            - alert
            - optimistic
            - good humored           
            - feelings of inferiority
            - over analytical
            - sarcastic
            - pessimistic

4. Heart Chakra - Our ability to love self and others.
Color: Green
Green connects us to unconditional love and is used for balancing our whole being. When balanced we are able to give love and also to love and nurture ourselves.  Helps relax muscles, nerves, and thoughts. Cleanses and balances our energy, to give a feeling of renewal, peace and harmony.
Location: Centre of chest just above heart.
Emotional issues: Love, joy, inner peace.
Related Gland: Thymus gland
Healing Exercises:  Ustrasana - Camel Pose. Awaken your heart, allowing your boundless love to be free. Practice patience, understanding and acceptance, even when dealing with less-than-pleasant people.
            - compassion
            - generosity
            - harmony/balance
            - loving 
            - indifference
            - jealousy
            - miserly
            - bitterness
5. Throat Chakra - Our ability to communicate and express ourselves.
Color: Blue
This is a mentally-relaxing colour. Blue has a pacifying effect on the nervous system and brings great relaxation - ideal for sleep problems, and hyper-active children. Connects us to holistic thought, and gives us wisdom and clarity enhancing communication and speech.
Location: Throat.
Emotional issues: Communication, self-expression of feelings, the truth.
Related Gland and Organs: Thyroid gland, Throat, Lungs, The upper digestive tract.
Healing:  Salamba Sarvangasana - Shoulderstand. Sarvangasana also balances the thyroid and hypothalamus glands, allowing for proper hormone production. Practice real listening and clear communication. Be true to yourself and others.
            - loyal
            - trustworthy
            - tactful
            - calm    
            - unfaithful
            - untrustworthy
            - self-righteous
6. Third Eye Chakra - Also called the Brow Chakra is our ability to focus on and see things from a 'higher' viewpoint rather than purely for satisfaction of the ego or one's material comfort.
Color: Indigo
The indigo energy connects us to our unconscious self, and gives us the experience of being part of the whole universe.
Location: Forehead between the eyes.
Emotional issues: Intuition, imagination, wisdom, ability to think and make decisions.
Related Gland:  Pituitary gland.
Healing:  Facing Dog Pose,  Adho Mukha Svanasana. Find balance to get clarity, peace and a deep sense of self. Practice quieting the mind and find grace in this crazy dance of life.
                    - highly intuitive
            - faithful
            - clear sighted
            - integrity
            - orderly mind   
            - inability to trust intuition
            - scattered mind
            - inconsiderate
            - blinkered vision  

7. Crown Chakra - The highest Chakra represents our ability to be fully connected spiritually.
Color: Violet
Location: The very top of the head.
Emotional issues: Inner and outer beauty, our connection to spirituality, pure bliss.
Related Gland:  Pineal gland.
Healing Exercises: Headstand pose, Salamba Sirhasana. Meditation & Running or cardio. Master all the above chakras.
                  - a reverence for all life
          - self sacrificing in the service of others  
          - idealism
          - an ability to see the appropriate route for the benefit of the higher self   
          - no concern for others
          - feelings of superiority
          - lack of contact with reality   
          - most mental disorders