Chakras for Beginners: The Solar Plexus Chakra
As mentioned before, chakra means ‘wheel’ and in yogic philosophy a chakra is a point in the body where energy comes together on its journey through the body (from bottom to top); a meeting point, if you like. We cannot see them, or feel them with our hands, but each is responsible for a different part of our mind, body or soul. Yogis believe that all of your chakras must be unblocked/aligned/opened in order for you to reach the state of 'Samadhi' or 'transcendental bliss' through meditation. If you have a blocked chakra you will never be able to leave the physical world (i.e. your body) through meditation.
In practical terms, think of the chakras like Maslow's hierarchy of needs; you cannot feel completely satisfied, happy or healthy if your chakras are not aligned/fulfilled.
In this series of 7 posts I'll be covering the basic elements of each of the chakras and how knowledge and awareness of those chakras may be able to help you in your day to day life.
So let's get started:
The Solar Plexus Chakra
The third chakra is the solar plexus chakra, located just above the navel. This chakra is related to your physical and emotional power, your sense of identity, your willpower and also your command of respect from others.
Those with a balanced third chakra will have complete confidence in their place in the world, their identity. They will have control over their emotions and will be completely in touch with themselves and others around them. They may be very physically strong or active also.
If you struggle with self-doubt or anxiety, or conversely if you have a very inflated sense of sel-importance then it may be a sign that there is an imbalance in this chakra.
What are the symptoms?
An unbalanced or blocked solar plexus chakra will cause various symptoms, including, but not limited to:
- Digestion issues
- Feelings of powerlessness
- Aggressive / controlling behaviour
- Victim mentality
- Lack of motivation
- Excessive laziness
- Lack of confidence OR inflated sense of self-importance
- Strong ego
- Poor self-image
- Lack of willpower
Most of the physical symptoms manifest in the digestive area...things like excessive gas, stomach ulcers, diabetes, etc may stem from an under- or over-active third chakra.
As mentioned previously fixing the problem from the outside could do the trick, but when it comes to the ego, commanding respect, or even self-esteem it's not always simple. Just as with the second chakra, the solar plexus chakra may take a lifetime of work.
Yogis believe that certain asanas (postures) can help to release tension and blockages in the chakras, just as they do in the muscles. For the solar plexus chakra, this means working on postures which make you feel powerful, activate the core and build strength:
- Warrior 1
- Warrior 2
- Reverse Warrior
- Sun salutations
- Boat pose
- Plank pose
So what about off the mat?
According to the science of Ayurveda eating yello foods can help (yellow is the colour of the chakra) as well a meditating on the colour yellow or on images of fire can help unblock the solar plexus chakra.
If you're in Brussels and want to know more...I'll be running an Introduction to the Chakras Workshop at Corpus Studios on 27th May 2018. You can book online at www.corpusstudios.com