The Visuddha Chakra
Vishuddha Chakra (Throat Chakra)
Visuddha, the Fifth Chakra
Located within the base of the throat, the fifth chakra, or Visuddha is said to resemble the many flowering petals of a lotus as it governs over sixteen different areas of the body, including the neck, nose, and mouth, among others. From this particular chakra emanates the nadi, producing sixteen unique vibrations, each of which is represented by vowels in the Sanskrit language.
5th Chakra: Visuddha/Visuddhi Throat Chakra Energy Center
Throat chakra meditation
Characteristics of the Visuddha Chakra
The symbol of dreams, purity, and sound, this fifth chakra has the potential to provide inner peace, harmony, improved communication skills, and the ability use self expression to break free from preconceived notions or limitations. The elements associated with Visuddha are the sense of hearing, and the color blue, as well as an array of gemstones and essential plant oils including aquamarine, azurite, blue opal and quartz, chryoscolla, lapis, turquoise, eucalyptus, frankincense, and sage.
The fifth chakra rules vital areas of the body and include all of the mouth, the throat, trachea and esophagus, the vocal cords, the cervical vertebrae, the shoulders, arms, and the hands. Visuddha also governs two important glands that have a great deal to do with one's health, the parathyroid and the thyroid.
Said to symbolize one's inner creativity and pure consciousness, Visuddha is loosely translated to mean "purifying by separating," in reference to transforming negativity into wisdom and positive emotions. The Visuddha also represents a time within humanity where universal peace will be achieved, allowing the human race to come together as one, free from their boundaries and petty arguments that work to drive people apart instead of experiencing true unity, all of which are feats rather difficult to achieve in this modern world of vast beliefs and differences.
Visualizing this chakra and its flowering petals give us the power to remain strong and able to keep the flow of energy constant.
Psychically, Visuddha rules the areas of speech, eloquence, expression, and perception. As it controls the vocal chords, one whose fifth chakra is active and in balance will experience excellent communication skills and be without worry of mouth and throat ailments.
The ramifications of an unbalanced Visuddha include the inability to communicate freely and properly with others as well as a host of physical symptoms including throat and ear problems as well as an underactive or overactive thyroid gland. Mouth ulcers, problems with the teeth and gums, swollen glands, stiff necks, and sore throats may all be attributed toward an imbalanced or blocked Visuddha.
Psychologically, an imbalanced fifth chakra may cause impediments regarding faith or creativity, decision making, expression, and other problems like addiction and substance abuse.
However, a well balanced, harmonious fifth chakra will bring about benefits such as heightened listening skills, the ability to communicate and express your thoughts and desires, as well as a previously hidden sense of creativity and inspiration. Said to fully develop first in females, this particular chakra may develop as early as six years of age.
Four Yoga Postures to Balance the Vishuddha Chakra
Begin by lying on the back, rising up on the elbows while sliding the body to the back of the yoga mat, making sure to keep the forearms firmly in place while breathing properly. Gently drop the top of the head back toward the floor allowing the throat to fully open.
Then, to come out of the Matysasana position, use the forearms to raise the head and upper body up off the floor. If you find discomfort or pressure on the crown of the head before you're able to master this position, use a blanket or pillow between you and the floor.
With ample support under both shoulders, the Salamba Sarvangasana yoga position provides comfort for the neck area only by using firm blankets or pillows for support. Allow the head and neck to rest on the floor with the shoulders on the blankets while laying the arms alongside your body, also on the floor. Bend the knees while contracting the abdominal muscles, exhale and press the arms firmly against the floor so that the knees and back are both raised. Use the entire palms of the hands to support the lower back area while drawing the thighs in toward the torso.
To continue the Salamba Sarvangasana position, continue to support the back while drawing the elbows in toward one another. Raise the pelvic area and with little weight or pressure on the lower neck area, slightly turn the head from side to side to facilitate movement. Bring the head back to its natural position and if you are feeling no discomfort, continue by moving the palms from the lower back area up closer to the ribcage without allowing the elbows to slide outward.
This relatively simple yoga position involves rising up onto the knees and drawing the hands to the sides of the body while opening the chest area. Then, reach both hands back to grasp the heels of the feet, bringing the hips forward so they are over the knees and allowing the head to tilt back while fully opening up the throat.
While lying on the floor, bend both knees and place the bottoms of the feet firmly on the floor with the heels positioned hip width apart from one another and directly underneath the knees. While pressing down with both palms onto the floor next to the hip area, position the chin slightly away from the chest to give the neck a more nature curve, elevating it from the floor.
Finally, move the pelvic area up toward the navel while remembering to breathe properly.
In this yoga position derived from the Salamba Sarvangasana position, the lower back should be fully supported with both of your palms as the legs and feet are slowly lowered over the top of the head and toward the floor.
Continue by drawing the elbows together putting little or no weight on the lower neck area as well as allowing for space between the neck and floor. If you begin to feel tension in the lower back or legs, bend your knees slightly.