Chakra may now be a common term to you and you may even have an understanding of its meaning.
The chakras (meaning wheel or cycle) are culmination points for nadis (channels) of prana sacral chakra(energy or lifeforce). A useful analogy when considering chakras is to envision nadis as highways, filled with cars (prana) and the chakras are the intersections and roundabouts where these highways meet.
The chakras reside on the sushumna nadi, which is the central channel of energy that is aligned with the spinal column.
Let’s look closely at the solar plexus chakra:
Manipura is located at the solar plexus region and driven by the element of fire, this is where your inner sun is located – the area that produces your inner heat and sun like energy.
It is about your core self, your “power”, and your inner sun, which produces heat and energy. It’s about accepting the “jewels” of life – also known as your birthright. The yantra features a ten petalled lotus, with an inverted red triangle in the centre.
It mentally governs who you are, what you can do, how you see yourself, how you feel about that, your self esteem and control issues (perhaps even anxiety).
‘The priviledge of a lifetime is being who you are’, Joseph Campbell.
Manipura guides us to be proactive and get things done, inspires action, progress and implementing change and forward movement and it also relates to how you interact with your friends, colleagues and peers.
Should the chakra be out of balance, emotions such as disgust, pride, fear, shame, victimhood, disempowerment ego and anger may present themselves to the surface. As this space governs the stomach, solar plexus, small intestines, gall bladder and pancreas, imbalances may manifest as IBS, diabetes, ulcers, liver disease, eating disorders, overeating, fatigue and sugar/caffeine addictions.
A great way to counterbalance an unstable Manipura chakra is to take “good” risks. What constitutes a good risk? Things like confrontation, setting limits and personal boundaries, asking for what you want and reclaiming your personal power. Karma yoga is another good “manipura medicine”.
Foods and spices that can help balance the prana in this chakra include pasta, bread, rice, seeds, dairy, turmeric, cumin and ginger.
- Chaturanga dandasana
- Urdhva Dhanurasana
Here are some practical ways that you can increase the vitality of Manipura:
- stand for a few minutes in the sun (or alternatively, visualise it)
- hot yoga or anything that makes you sweat, such as vigourous exercise or a sauna
- yellow foods or clothing
- positive self talk (try downloading our affirmation card)
‘I am always right; you are always right. Now what?’