Would you like to feel more grounded and confident, healthy, vibrant, open and loving, joyful, empowered, present, clear of purpose, spirituality aware and connected? Learning to work with and bring balance to your own energy system can enhance your well-bring on so many levels.
When our energy is moving freely, like water rushing in a stream, it’s flow is steady, balanced, and unhindered in it’s forward progress, and so too, are we.
But when our energy is stuck, stagnant, or blocked in one or more places, we are likely to feel unwell, unhappy, or unfulfilled in the physical, mental and/or emotional areas which correspond to that “stuck place” in our energetic system, or, more specifically, that blocked chakra in our subtle body.
The subtle body is the energetic body which is superimposed on, and interpenetrated with, our physical body. All living creatures have this electromagnetic force field within and around their physical bodies. The external manifestation of the subtle body is the aura, which appears as a soft glow emanating within and around the physical body. At our core, our aura or subtle energetic field appears as a series of vortexes, or spinning discs: the chakras.
Chakra literally means “wheel” or “disc” in Sanskrit, the ancient language of yoga. There are seven major chakras, which are located near the seven major nerve ganglia of the spinal column.
The three lower chakras correlate to our survival, sexuality, and actions, while the three upper chakras correlate to our creativity and communication, intuition, and our gateway to higher states of consciousness and spiritual connection. The heart chakra, associated with love, spins in the middle, and is the bridge between the lower and uppers chakras, and the center of balance within our energetic system.
Energy moves up and down the spine and it’s energetic counterpart, called the shushumna, or central channel, in two spiraling waves.
The shushumna is a column of energy located in the very center of the body, in front of the spine. It’s two energetic currents weave around each other, intersecting as they flow through each of our seven chakras.
Energy is concentrated and dispersed through these spinning wheels of energy, which open and close like flowers as they pull in energy, digest it, and release it. Each chakra functions within a specific area of the physical body, affecting the health of that area’s corresponding nerves, organs, muscles, bones, tissue, etc., as well as the health of the subtle energetic layers of our emotional, mental and spiritual bodies. Imbalanced chakras may be described as being too “open” meaning excessive or overactiver, or “closed” i.e. deficient or underactive… or in any of many varied in-between stages. An out-of-balance chakra will generally affect the chakras above and/or below it, causing them to function faster, or more sluggishly. Anodea Judith, a pioneer in bringing an understanding of the ancient knowledge of the chakra system to the modern Western mind, states that “To work with the chakras is to heal ourselves of old constricting patterns lodged in the body of the mind, or habitual behavior.”*
A six-week series, Yoga and the Chakras, will be offered at Shri Studios beginning on October 14th. In this series we will explore each of the seven chakras, in depth, with the last class focusing on the 6th and 7th chakras together.
The series will provide participants with a clear map of their chakra system, along with some direct experience working with each chakra and its associated elements, colors, sounds, and scents, as well as their own related thoughts, feelings, habits, patterns, and physical manifestations of wellness and/or dis-ease. Each class can be taken individually, if the student is interested in working with a specific one or more chakras, but cannot attend all six classes. The series schedule is:
October 14, Root Chakra: Located at the base of the spine and the perineum, and associated with survival and feelings of groundedness.
October 21, Sacral Chakra: Located in the lower abdomen, and associated with emotions and sexuality.
October 28, Solar Plexus Chakra: Located above the belly button, and associated with will, self-esteem, and personal power.
November 4, Heart Chakra: Located over the sternum, and associated with love.
November 11, Throat Chakra: Located in the throat, and associated with creativity and communication
November 18, Third Eye Chakra: Located in the center of the forehead, and associated with intuition, imagination, and clairvoyance. Crown Chakra: Located at the top of the head, and associated with knowledge, understanding, and transcendent consciousness.
* Judith, Anodea quote from Wheels of Life: A User’s Guide to the Chakra System, 2nd edition, 1999 by Llewellyn Publications
Amy DelaTerre, MA, is a Kripalu-certified yoga instructor, specializing in prenatal and postpartum yoga, children’s yoga, and Hatha yoga for women. Amy has been sharing yoga with children and adults of all ages for almost twenty years, in a wide variety of settings, from yoga studios and recreation centers to preschools, elementary schools, libraries and homeschool enrichment programs. Amy and her family live in Longmont, where Amy home-schools, gardens, hikes, teaches classes on the use of herbs and essential oils for health and well being, and makes bath and body products for her company, Of the Earth Botanicals. Amy is also working on a Children’s Yoga Teachers’ Manual, which she hopes to publish someday soon.