Anahata the Heart Chakra
Anahata the Fourth Chakra
Among the seven kundalini chakras Anahata is the fourth. It means the unbeaten or unstuck sound. The Anahata Chakra lies along the vertebrae of the spinal column in the area of thoracic vertebra IX, within the central canal near the cardiac plexus and the heart within the chitrini nadi. You can locate the trigger point of the Anahata by pressing your left finger into the center of your chest while pressing the fingers of your right hand on the spinal column directly behind the same horizontal point of your chest. Two intersecting triangles form a six pointed star which is a lotus symbol with 12 petals. There are two interconnected triangles in the symbol. One is pointing upwards while the other points downwards. This represents balance. There are three chakras above and three below the central heart chakra. Represented by these triangles is the force of matter moving upwards toward freedom and the force of the spirit manifesting. This chakra combines them evenly creating a center of balance and peace. The color of this chakra is green; it associates with the sense of touch while also relating to the arms, hands, lungs, circulatory system and the heart thymus gland. The bija mantra for it is YAM.
HEART CHAKRA MEDITATION
Chakra's meditation - Heart chakra
Characteristics of the Anahata Chakra
The heart chakra corresponds with the prominence of love and the aspect of air. Since air is has the least density of the first four elements it is certainly necessary as it is formless and fundamentally invisible. Air is expansive and will expand into any space yet it is gentle and soft. Love is similar as it is the expansion of the heart. It transcends any boundary and spirit of interconnectedness. Love is a balance that is soft, easy and forgiving. Ideally, the heart chakra radiates love from a string of solidly centered self acceptance that reaches out with the compassion, care and support of others. Balance of our love of self and love for others and the interconnectedness of our spirits is the fundamental message of this chakra. When the Anahata is developed one of extremely sensitive to the thoughts and feelings of others and have a highly developed sense of touch. The power of healing others either by touch or radiating energy is a powerful gift of those with an open heart chakra. However, if this chakra is overactive the ego takes over and the lack of heart love suffers in an individual. An out of control heart chakra will cause inconsideration for others and a resistance to going out of the way to assist others will disappear. On the other hand, an under active heart chakra leaves one with no sense of self and an inner numbness. The Positive Qualities Of This Chakra Include:
- Oneness with Life
- Group Consciousness
- Divine Unconditional Love
The negative qualities of this chaka include:
- Repressed Love
- Emotional instability
- Heart related problems
- Circulatory related problems
When this chakra is unbalanced it will lead to various problems and physical dysfunctions, such as:
- Thoracic spine
- Heart disease
- Emotional issues
- Traumatic love life
- Psychological issues
- Lack of compassion
- Lack of self confidence
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Problems with the upper back and shoulders
The Anahata Chakra Meditation Techniques
Within the centre of your chest visualize a flame. Watch the growing of the fire as your mind expands, creating a stronger heart. Visualize that you see the visible and the invisible world. This chakra is the most vital as it encompasses the joy of giving and the feeling of love. Visualize that you love everyone no matter who they are. Remember there nothing more successful in opening the heart chakra than love.
Advanced Yoga Poses : Ustrasana Yoga Pose
The Yoga Postures Most Helpful In Opening This Chakra Include:
- Ustrasana the Camel
Kneel on a folded blanket upon the floor, placing your knees at a hip distance apart and then set your hips over your knees. Slightly press the tops of your feet into the earth thereby grounding the pose. Slightly rotate you thighs internally to better isolate the hip flexor stretch of this pose. Next you will slowly contract the lower abdomen in order to tilt your tailbone down from the pelvis this will draw your hips slightly upwards towards the bottom of the front of the ribs. Allow your outer hips and buttocks to be flexible while performing this pelvic tilt. Hold a light firmness in your abdomen and place your hands on the pelvis back. Your fingers will point downwards as your palms will lie across the tops of the buttocks. Lengthen the lower back as the tailbone moves towards the pubis in the pelvis tilt. While you are doing this you will feel the bottom front of your ribs being gently limited. Going on into the back arch you will inhale and slowly roll back your shoulders by pressing the shoulder blades towards the back and against the ribs. The heart region will lift as your chest expands. Keeping the pelvis in the forward position over your knees you will lean back slightly against the firmness of your shoulder blades and tailbone. Remain with your gaze forward and hands on the pelvis if you feel stiffness in the hips or knees. You should continue only when you feel strong and comfortable. You will slightly twist to one side to easily place one hand on the back of one heel. Place the other hand on the other heel when you return the spine to the center, while keeping energy and firmness in the abdomen. Gently press your thighs forward into a perpendicular position. Control the bottom of the front ribs while you continue to lift your hips towards the ribs thereby reducing the compression of the lower back. Your hands will be positioned in such a way that the palms are on the heels and the fingers point downwards over the bottom of your feet. This permits the upper arm to rotate while expanding the chest and shoulders. Continue this pose with your gaze forward. In a more advanced version you will relax your jaw and neck as you gently move your head backwards. Your throat should be soft and relaxed, opening the mouth to reduce the tension of muscles in the front of the neck. Hold this pose comfortably with an ease of breathing for twenty seconds up to sixty seconds. Exiting Ustrasana you will exhale while contracting your abdominal muscles. Bring your hands slowly to the back of the pelvis one at a time. Inhaling you will contract your abdominals further in order to pull the bottom ribs forward; this causes the truck to flex forward. Continue lifting your chest over your knees. If you are holding your head back you will wait for the chest to pass over your knees and then only will you allow your head to come gently forward with gravity. This aids in avoiding neck strain. Slowly move into the Child’s Pose and then rest while taking a few breaths. Inhaling deeply into your back where the echoes of Ustrasana still exist.
- Bhujangasana the Cobra
You will begin lying prone upon your belly. Place your palms under the shoulders while tucking your elbows close to your torso. Straighten your legs with the tops of your feet pressing downwards into the mat. Inhaling you will slowly press into your hands to lengthen your arms, thereby moving your chest upwards. Draw your tailbone under as the pubic bone moves upwards toward the navel. You will use the pelvic tilt in order to maintain the openness of your lower spine while arching. Rise only to the point where you feel no pressure in the lower back as the pubic bone remains on the mat. Without being hard on your back you should pull your shoulder blades back and down. While keeping your elbows slightly bent you will tuck your elbows close to your ribcage.
- Matsyasana the Fish
Laying on your back on the floor you will bend your knees with your feet on the floor. Inhaling, you lift the pelvis slightly up off of the floor, while sliding your hands palm down below your buttocks. Rest with your buttocks sitting upon the backs of your hands. Slowly lift your upper back and head up off of the floor. Arching the back you will release your head back onto the floor. Keep you knees bent or straighten them onto the floor.
Breathing exercises such as Pranayama and other deep breathing exercises such as analma veloma and Kapalbhati are also helpful for opening this chakra.
Green foods are essential to this chakra such as green fruits and vegetables. The minerals and gemstones associated with this chakra are green aventurine, green jade, green and link tourmaline, emerald, ruby, and rose quartz.