The gracious Kundalini, after having given me the visual knowledge of Its movement and the functioning of prana (the life force), moved on to the next step of teaching me how the chakra system in the subtle body works.
“Chakras are very subtle and high-powered vortices of energy, which receive the cosmic prana and act as transformers to reduce the voltage, so that it can be used by the different organs and parts of the body. As well as providing the prana for specific areas and functions of the body, they can also be used as trigger-points for awakening the higher faculties and dimensions of consciousness.”
– Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati, Prana Pranayama Prana Vidya
Chakras are located in the etheric body. The etheric body is a transmitter and receiver of telepathic impulses of an intuitive, mental or emotional nature; and it provides the channel for the physically focused consciousness to register the subtler worlds.
“The etheric body is a body composed entirely of lines of force and of points where these lines of force cross each other and thus form (in crossing) centres of energy.”
– Alice A. Bailey, Esoteric Healing
The seven major force centres of the etheric body are called chakras. Traditionally they have been depicted in the shape of a lotus at different levels and each level has a certain number of petals and is of a specific colour.
The figure is illustrated the way I experienced the chakras in my body. I visualized them in the element they represent. The wings in the visual symbolize the vibrations of the Anahata or the Heart chakra.Mooladhara, with its centre in the physical body, at the base of the spine, is located at the perineum. It is symbolized by a serpent, coiled into three and a half circles. Swadhisthana is located in the genital region and I experienced it as water. Manipura is located at the navel and I saw it as fire. Anahata, located in the centre of the chest, I experienced as a soft gold and pink glow. Vishuddhi is located at the epiglottis in the throat. It is smoky purple. When active, its vibrations gave me the sense of a fluttering of wings. Ajna as the third eye and located between the eyebrows is indigo in colour. Lastly, Sahasrara is experienced as gold with its vibrations swirling in all directions.
Each chakra has a mantra (sacred chant), the sound of which activates it and an element to which it is related:
- The mantra for Mooladhara is ‘Lang’, its element is earth and sensory perception is ‘smell’.
- The mantra for Swadhisthana is ‘Vang’, its element is water and sensory perception is ‘taste’.
- The mantra for Manipura is ‘Rang’, its element is fire and sensory perception is ‘sight’.
- The mantra for Anahata is ‘Yang’, its element is air and sensory perception is ‘touch’.
- The mantra for Vishuddhi is ‘Hang’, its element is akasha (cosmos) and sensory perception is ‘sound’.
- The mantra for Ajna is ‘Aum’, its element is Maha Tattva, in which all other tattvas are present in their rarified pure essence (tanmatra). Here consciousness, super-consciousness and the sub-conscious mind flow together.
- The mantra for Sahasrara is ‘Aum Satyam Aum’. The flowering of this chakra leads to enlightenment.
My experience of the chakras did not follow the traditional pattern and I visualized them as discs, rings or at times like a pendulum. It is said that if Kundalini is to travel up to the higher brain centres, Ajna must already be functioning. That would also mean that the person is living a balanced existence without being ruled by intense emotion and his physical, mental and emotional bodies are in harmony.
The very first breath I took that was prescribed in the course, acted as a catalyst and the Vishuddhi chakra came alive in front of the throat. This chakra evokes surrender and opens up the mystical dimension. In this chakra purification and harmonizing of all opposites takes place. It is the centre responsible for receiving thought vibrations from other people’s minds and other dimensions. It evokes knowledge and expanded consciousness.
Next, I visualize the Manipur chakra moving at the navel point in its natural colours of red and orange.
While sitting in meditation, I became conscious of a strange movement taking place in my forehead. Putting my attention to it, I realized that it was a pendulum, moving in a clockwork rhythm of tik-tok… tik-tok, going across the forehead and back. Back and forth. As soon as I was focused on it, the movement accelerated, which in turn created the same movement at different levels of the body. I realized later that these vibrations were happening at the level of each of the main chakras. All the chakras at different centres moved at the same speed and in a rhythmic pattern. During different phases and from time to time the chakras go through their tuning. This probably happens in order to access and assimilate the knowledge that is forthcoming. Here, the Sahasrara (Crown centre) and the chakras at the finger tips are also active, indicating that the physical body was in readiness to take in and absorb consciousness of another level.
The Heart chakra, standing like a coin on edge. It moves in half rotating fashion, in perfect balance. The same chakra that is standing on edge and going back and forth in a half circle, drops to a flat position and starts moving like a pendulum from right to left and so forth.
Consciousness As Chakras
After the clearing of the chakras takes place, a new consciousness moves in, which is also in the shape of a disc/chakra, bringing in new knowledge and unfoldment. This new knowledge that is moving in, is the knowledge, that is being sent forth by the siddhas (yogic masters), which I absorb and integrate into my new evolving self. The discs that are moving in are of the colour of the elements. The discs initially place themselves in front of the body. During the course of meditation, these discs of colourful prana gently move into the body, with an extension outside the body probably reflecting as aura.
After the synchronization of the chakras related to the physical body, consciousness from another level in different shapes moves in, releasing further knowledge.
Each of the seven main chakras has its counterpart in the physical body in the form of vital organs. The efficient functioning of these physical organs depends upon the functioning of the chakras, which are located in the subtle body. The more congested a chakra, the denser the related organ. Congestion of the chakra is related to the physical, mental and emotional baggage an individual body-mind organism carries throughout its evolution. Therefore, the chakras not only energize the physical body but also affect the individual’s emotional and mental body.
The chakra can change its size, shape and movement according to the situation and its requirement. Its quality and definition would also be determined by the flow of thought. The movement can change from rhythmic to chaotic. It can move like a flipped coin, up and down, like a pendulum of a clock, clockwise or anti-clockwise. The rhythm changes according to the circumstance, situation or mood.
It’s the rhythm and vibration of the chakra that indicates whether the event is related to a person, place or thing. In other words, when a person has a premonition, we say that her/his sixth sense is working or she/he is intuitive. What it means is that the person has become sensitive to vibrations and because of this he is able to sense what is to unfold.
It is always preferable for the chakras to open naturally when they are ready to open, which means, as one moves through life gaining wisdom and knowledge, the process of chakra development automatically occurs.
With the awakening of the chakras, our consciousness and our mind undergo changes. If an aspirant has not attained a balance between the trinity of the physical, mental and emotional bodies, conscious effort to open the chakras such as visualizing them and repeating the Bija Mantras (seed mantras), may cause one or more of them to open prematurely thus creating an imbalance between the three bodies.
The above is my personal experience of the chakras. Needless to say, no two aspirants’ experience would be the same. Therefore, the information presented herein is only for your guidance to help you understand your experience.
Thus, these visuals in a step-by-step manner helped me to understand the role of chakras and their importance in the spiritual evolutionary process. This has been revealed in a visual form so that in turn it may be presented as sign-posts for you – the meditators.
– Santosh Sachdeva