Meditation and Chakra Cleansing
What is meditation?
According to the Merriam Webster definition of meditation at http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/meditation, meditation is defined as:-
1) A discourse intended to express its author's reflections or to guide others into contemplation
2) An act or process of meditating.
In this article, we will be concentrating on the second definition which is the process of meditating. Specifically, we would be concentrating on meditating and chakra cleansing as well as the benefits obtained after cleansing our chakras.
What is a Chakra?
Chakra can be defined as any physical or spiritual points in the human body which can elevate the conscious mind into the sub-conscious level. The word "chakra" is from a Sanskit word which means "wheel". The word "wheel" is meant to be a symbolic representation of the "wheel" which plays a part in ensuring that our body is at the optimum level.
There are seven major chakra's , six minor chakra's and seven lower chakra's. Before discussing further on the seven major chakra's, it is worth mentioning the six minor chakra's and the seven lower chakra's.
Six Minor Chakra's
i) Hrit/Surya Chakra - This chakra is located just below the heart and is often known as the "wish-fulfilling tree" chakra because of its ability to determine whether your destiny becomes a reality. This chakra is also known to support the major Manipura Chakra by providing it the energy and heat from the sun.
ii) Lalana/Talumula - The exact location of this chakra is unknown but there are two possibilities as to where it might the located. The first being at the roof of the mouth between the Visuddhi & Ajna chakra and the second possible location is at the forehead above the Ajna chakra.
iii) Manas - The meaning of this chakra is 'mind' and therefore, this chakra represents the mind and how we think and act. The exat location of this chakra is not known but is thought to be located above the Ajna chakra and bing close to the Surya chakra.
iv) Bindu - This chakra is located at the top back of the head. Some brahmins have a practice of leaving a tuft of hair at the back of their head to symbolise the Bindu chakra.
v) Brahmarandra - This chakra is also known as the secondary chakra to the primary Sahasrana chakra. This chakra is located at the crown of the head near the Sahasrana chakra.
vi) Guru - This chakra is also located at the top of the head and its name Guru is associated with being connected to the higher forces that guide is in our spiritual journey.
Seven Lower Chakra's
i) Atala - This chakra governs fear and lust and is located at the hips.
ii) Vitala - This chakra governs anger and resentment and is located at the thighs.
iii) Sutala - This chakra governs jealousy and is located at the knees.
iv) Talatala - This chakra governs instinctive willfulness and is located in the calves.
v) Rasatala - This chakra governs our animal instincts and is known to be the centre of selfishness. This chakra is located at the ankles.
vi) Mahatala - This chakra is associated as the chakra "without conscience" and it reflects our inner blindness. This chakra is located at the feet.
vii) Patala - This chakra is associated with the realm of murder, torture, malice and hatred. It is located at the soles of feet. It is said that this chakra borders the realm of hell or Naraka .
The Seven Major Chakra's
The seven major chakra is:-
1) Muladhara (Base/Root Chakra)
This chakra is located at the perineum which is in between the genital area and the anus. This chakra is responsible when our survival is at stake by bringing out the flight-or-fight response which we need in order to survive. This chakra is symbolized as a lotus flower with four petals and is said to be red in colour. Apart from being associated with our survival instinct, this chakra is also responsible for sexuality, obsession and lust.
2) Swadhisthana (Sacral Chakra)
This chakra is located in the sacrum area and is associated with our sexual organs such as testes and ovaries. Due to this, swadhisthana is said to be involved in our relationship issues, basic emotional needs and pleasure. This chakra governs our reproductive systems, creativity and enthusiasm.
3) Manipura (Solar Plexus Chakra)
This chakra is associated with our digestive systems. It is said to correspond to the Islest of Langerhans which are a group of cells located near the pancreas, outer adrenal glands and the adrenal cortex. These organs play a vital role in converting the food we eat into energy for our body. This chakra governs fear, anxiety, opinion formation and transition of simple emotion to complex emotions.
4) Anahata (Heart Chakra)
This chakra is located in the chest and it symbolizes the union between male and female. This chakra governs complex emotions, compassion, unconditional love as well as governing devotion in terms of spiritually.
5) Vishuddha (Throat Chakra)
This chakra is located parallel to the thyroid, a throat gland which produces the thyroid hormone responsible for growth and maturation. This chakra governs communication, independence, fluent thought as well as as a sense of security.
6) Ajna (Third Eye Chakra)
This chakra is known as the third eye chakra because it is linked to the pineal gland which is a light sensitive gland that produces the melatonin hormone which regulates our sleep and waking up patterns. The key issues which governs this chakra is balancing our higher and lower selves as well as trusting our inner instincts. This chakra also deals with intuitiveness and visual consciousness.
7) Sahasrara (Crown Chakra)
This chakra located at the pituitary gland which releases hormones to communicate with the endocrine systems and evetually connects to the central nervous systems via the hypothalamus. The hypothalamus is said to be connected to our basic consciousness. This chakra governs the release of our karmas, physical action with meditation as well as universal consciousness. It is said that this chakra connects us to our spiritual soul and body.
How do you combine meditation and chakra cleansing?
Meditation allows us to focus our minds on healing the body as well as assisting us to attain self realization. Once we meditate to heal our body, naturally, all our organs will feel re-energized.
To do this, is it best we delve further into meditating on cleansing each and every major chakra in our body. If we occasionally cleanse our chakra's, we will be assured of a healthy and long life, hopefully free from diseases.
The process of meditation and chakra cleansing is relatively simple. A healthy chakra reflects a healthy body. The technique for meditating and cleansing the chakra is listed below:-
1) It is best to make yourself comfortable and most importantly to relax your body and free your mind of any clutter. Focus your mind on a single object or a bright white light. Visualize the white light as your cleansing tool to cleanse your major chakra's. The breathing technique which will be used is Kapalbhati pranayam breathing. You have to slowly close your eyes.
2) Breath in (inhale) through both the nostrils, expanding the abdomen and then exhale forfully which should result in the contraction of the abdominal muscle. This is done by pulling the abdoment muscles quickly and exhaling through the nose. This results in the air being pushed out of the lungs by contracting the diaphragm.
3) Practice kapalbhati pranayam breathing exercise. After exhaling, the inhalation should be effortless. One has to relax and the lungs should be automatically filled with air. One can practice with 15 respirations or until one is comfortable breathing in this way.
If one is unable to get the correct kapalbhati breathing, one can also use normal breathing throughout the meditation process. Kapalbhati breathing techniques are used by yogi's as they have several benefits which are:-
i) it cleanses the lungs and the respiratory system.
ii) it purifies the blood and increases the supply of oxygen to all cells.
iii) it improves digestion and strengthens the abdominal muscles.
iv) prepares the mind for meditation.
Points regarding common mistakes made when attempting kapalbhati breathing exercise:-
i) the abdomen is contracted while inhaling
ii) the shoulders are contracted to push air out when exhaling
iii) the back and shoulders should not move during breathing. Only the abdominal muscles and lung move during inhaling and exhaling.
4) Now to begin cleansing the chakra's, we will start with the base chakra. Visualize a red colour disk spinning and with its spin, it removes and clears all impurities. One can "instruct" the base chakra to "cleanse and heal and to remove all impurities". Once this is done, visualize a clean red disk spinning symbolizing a pure red colour reflecting a cleansed base chakra.
5) Once your base chakra is cleansed, move up to your sacral chakra. Visualize an orange colour disk. Repeat the instructions as in point 3 above.
6) Once your sacral chakra is cleansed, you need to move up to the solar plexus chakra. Visualize a yellow colour disk spinning and repeat the instructions in point 3.
7) Once your solar plexus chakra is cleansed, move up to the heart chakra. Repeat the instructions as in point 3.
8) Once the heart chakra is cleansed, move up to the throat chakra, Visualize a blue colour disk spinning and repeat the instructions to "cleanse and heal and remove all impurities".
9) Once the throat chakra is cleansed, move up to the third eye chakra. Visualize a purple disk spinning and repeat instructions as in point 3 to "cleanse and heal and remove all impurities" in the third eye chakra.
10) Once the third eye chakra is cleansed, move up to the crown chakra. Visualize a violet disk spinning and repeat the instuctions in point 3 above. Once the crown chakra has been cleansed, you should now visualize a stronger chakra system whereby the impurities are now released from the base chakra and taken out through the crown chakra. Visualize the cleansed crown chakra cleansing your entire body, every cell, every organ and every atom in the system.
11) Finally, you should visualize the violet colour disk spinning and turning to a white light and merging with the heavens above. You will feel your body and mind at peace and encompassed in white light. You may stay in that white light as long as you wish. However, should you want to end the meditation, you should rub your palms and the warmth palms are placed on the closed eyes. Slowly open your eyes after that and you will feel energized.
Benefits of meditation and chakra cleansing
1) Heightened creativity, better resourfulness as well as better perception.
2) Better and deeper sleep is experienced.
3) Stress is greatly reduced if chakra meditation is practiced daily.
1) Lowers blood pressure which in turns reduces stroke and heart disease.
2) Leads to deeper level of physical relaxation.
3) Improve flow of air to the lungs which results in easier breathing.
1) Increases self-realization.
2) Brings body, mind and spirit in harmony with our chakra's.
3) Brings about a deeper level of spiritual enlightment.
The above is just some of the benefits of meditation and chakra cleansing. Overall, we would be able to experience a more meaningful life as our mind is now relaxed and focussed to take on the complications of life.