For me, this year is one of new experiences and taking the time to notice how I react to events / circumstances I can’t control. It’s been a time of learning about myself and how I respond when my security and safely is threatened, or when I feel fear. We all know we can’t control everything that happens to us and around us, but we all can control our responses. We have choices. Even in the most dire circumstances, we can control how we respond and therefore how to keep ourselves safe and being grounded.
To understand fear and it’s impact on body, mind and emotions, I have been studying the Muladhara chakra. Using my yoga practice, I focus on its qualities and choose asanas to help redirect fear and use mantra’s in my meditation to help still my mind and expand awareness.
The Muladhara chakra is part of the chakra system. The chakra system represents an holistic view of being human. This system can be a guide for us to find wholeness and balance in all aspects of our existence.
In the yogic tradition, there are seven chakras representing seven levels of our being from our physical manifestation to pure consciousness. As we grow, we realise we are much more than our physical existence and we move “up” the chakras to pure consciousness. This is a long journey and in day to day living, the overall aim is to have all of our chakras functioning in harmony and balance.
Chakras are all about energy and if our energy is not flowing / functioning well, then this will eventually manifest itself in the physical body (and others aspects of our being) and we may become unwell, fractured and feeling out of balance. One of the best ways of attending to our energy body is though a regular and sustained yoga practice but we can care for it in many other practical ways with exercise, rest, diet, breath practice, meditation and addressing feelings, beliefs and values.
The word chakra means wheel and to help me understand the chakra system and how it works, I visualise the chakras as “wheels” of energy in my subtle body which when “spinning” in perfect balance help keep the whole of my existence; my body, mind, emotions and spirit in perfect harmony. Of course in practice, this isn’t always easy to achieve, but just by being aware of and working with the chakras I have felt vast improvements in my all-round wellness.
The Muladhara chakra is the “lowest” chakra in human development and sits at our root / base. It is where our fears reside. Therefore to release our fears, to unblock the energy and set this chakra spinning, we need to overcome the obstacles holding us in the grip of fear and replace fear with love.
The main obstacles are our ego and our attachments but also our unawareness of reality and our fear of death.
Knowing this, I have been:
- Watching my ego and keeping it in check … knowing my ego is only a mask and therefore I always (or as much as I can), let my “true self” be seen and listen to my gut and my heart.
- Letting go of being tightly attached to … everything … people, objects, places, routines, habits … anything that no longer serves me.
- Feeling fear, acknowledging it by working through the emotions it initiates and then taking power over it.
- Re-programming my mind and not falling back into ways of beings that hold me back.
- Drawing love into my heart and sending love out into the world and knowing that love opens eyes to the truth, allows us to surrender, makes us tolerant and open-minded and makes us powerful.
Working with the chakra system is not easy, but it is rewarding.
I have been practising yoga consistently since 2009 but it is only in the last few years that I have embraced the chakra system and started studying it and following the practises. With seven chakras, there is much to learn and to cover, but with perseverance and an open mind, I am finding it fulfilling and I am feeling the benefits.
Next time, I will move “up” to the second chakra.
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