The 4th Chakra
As I mentioned in the previous columns, when doing any chakra work, it is imperative to keep yourself grounded. While you can use any grounding exercise that you prefer, I have always used this one in my chakra classes:
**Stand up, grip toes to the ground, long deep breathing, visualize your roots going deep into Mother Earth, keeping you grounded and centered. Inhale and bring the earth energy up to the base of your spine; exhale and let the energy return to the Earth. With each inhale, receive healing energy from the Earth; with each exhale, release all negativity. This will not hurt Mother Earth, as long as it is done for healing and revitalization. Activate your feelings of consciousness and open yourself up to the limitless possibilities surrounding you.** *From my 7-Week Chakra Course*
(photo credit: yogaandlove.com)
The Fourth Chakra is also called the Heart Chakra. It’s name in Sanskrit is Anahata, which means *unhurt or unstuck(. It is located right at your heart. This chakra helps you to tune into your own rhythm. It merges and balances your mind, body and spirit and helps to open your consciousness.
The color of this chakra is green; it’s element is Air and it is considered a “feminine” chakra.
The Fourth Chakra aids in your ability to act with compassion, devotion and love. The love you give and receive will be unconditional. You will act with acceptance and understanding. You will find a balance within yourself.
When this chakra is balanced and functioning properly, you will feel a sense of compassion for others. You will be caring, accepting and calm. Your inner balance and serenity will be obvious to those around you. You will adopt an “attitude of gratitude” and be able to move in harmony and unity with those around you, who may comment that you have a glow about you.
Conversely, if this chakra is unbalanced, you will be unable to form attachments and will have difficulty in all relationships. You may feel sad, lonely and resentful; you may feel alienated from those around you. You will have no belief in love and will find it hard to receive love, as you are unable to give it freely.
One of the first and easiest things you can do to open the Heart chakra, is to straighten your posture and get those shoulders back. We spend so much time hunched over our screens with our heads forward, shoulders slumped and our chest collapsed. Bring that head up, straighten your spine and gently move your chest forward and open that heart center – take several deep breaths. Try to do this a few times a day and notice the change!
A wonderful exercise to open the heart chakra is to sit comfortably, cross-legged on the floor or in a straight chair, with a straight spine. Stretch your arms out in front of you with your palms together.
(photo credit: theyogalunchbox.co.nz)
As you inhale, stretch those arms open to your sides, parallel to the floor. Feel the stretch, expanding your lungs with the breath, opening up the heart center.
(photo credit: awaken.com)
As you exhale, bring your arms back to the front, bringing the palms back together. Do this for at least three minutes.
You can also do the following “Gratitude Breath Exercise”:
Inhale through the nose
Exhale completely through the mouth
Inhale deeply and smoothly through the mouth
Exhale completely through the nose.
(You can use the mantra “Sat Nam”, mentally vibrating “Sat” on the
inhale and “Nam” on the exhale. Sat Nam = Truth is My Identity
(The above heart chakra exercise and gratitude breath exercise from 3HO/Kundalini Yoga)
Additonally, for this chakra, you can do the following breath visualization meditation:
**Sit in easy pose (or comfortably in a straight chair, feet on floor). Close your eyes. With long deep breathing, bring calm to your heart center. Do this for several minutes. Visualize the verdant green of Spring, when everything is healthy, new and reborn. Let this green radiance enter through your heart center. Feel yourself being reborn and full of vibrant energy. Breathe all of this into your heart center, letting it nourish and cleanse you. Release any emotional pain as you let yourself feel as new and clean as the earth after a spring rain. (*From my 7-Week Chakra Course*)
After the meditation, lie down on the floor and relax for at least five minutes or alternately, sit quietly with a relaxed breath. Stretch your arms up toward to ceiling several times before moving.
As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at [email protected]
Until next month, when we continue with the Fifth Chakra, I wish you peace, joy and happiness.