Spiritual wellness and the seven chakras – News
Spiritual wellbeing involves developing a personal, inner connection and harmony between you and the wonder, majesty and mystery of the universe. It is important that everyone research what they think is their own purpose and purpose, and there are many different ways to do this.
Activities that promote spiritual wellbeing include meditation, general mindfulness, yoga, prayer, affirmations, or other specific spiritual practices that encourage a connection to a higher power or belief system.
An interesting way to practice spiritual wellbeing is to work with the seven chakras. Many of us have come across this term before, but what exactly are chakras? In meditation and yoga, chakras are known as energy wheels that are located throughout the body. It is believed that there are seven main chakras that align the spine from the tailbone to the crown of the head. To find out how open or closed each of your chakras is, take this free test.
It is believed that working with our chakras has significant physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual benefits. A common way to work with chakra energies is through meditation. Below are brief explanations of the seven chakras, how they affect us, and how you can balance them through simple meditations:
Root chakra – Represents our foundation and the feeling of being grounded
Place: Base of the spine in the coccyx area.
Underactive effects: You can tend to feel anxious, nervous, or slightly unwanted.
Overactive effects: They may be more materialistic or greedy and tend to resist change.
Root Chakra Meditation: Let the tips of your thumb and index finger touch.
Focus on the root chakra at the base of the tailbone.
Sing the sound LAM (“L-ah-ng”)
Sacral chakra – Our connection or ability to accept others and new experiences
Place: Lower abdomen, about two inches below the navel and two inches in.
Underactive effects: They tend to be emotionless or not very open to other people.
Overactive effects: You may feel more emotionally attached to others.
Sacral Chakra Meditation: Place your hands in your lap, palms up. Left hand underneath, the palm touching the back of the finger of the right hand. The tips of the thumbs touch each other gently. Focus on the sacral chakra in the lower back.
Sing the sound VAM (“V-ah-ng”)
Navel / Solar Plexus Chakra – Our ability to be confident and control our lives
Place: Upper abdomen in the abdominal area.
Underactive effects: You can tend to be passive, indecisive, and shy.
Overactive effects: They may be more dominant and potentially more aggressive.
Navel Chakra Meditation: Place your hands in front of your stomach, just below your solar plexus. Let the fingers come together at the top, all of them pointing away from you. Fingers crossed. It is important to stretch your fingers. Focus on the umbilical chakra on the spine, just above the navel.
Sing the sound ram (“R-ah-ng”)
Heart chakra – Our ability to love
Place: Center of the chest just above the heart.
Underactive effects: You can be cold and aloof.
Overactive effects: You can be arrogant about your love and affection for others, for probably more selfish reasons.
Heart Chakra Meditation: Sit with your legs crossed. Let the tips of your index finger and thumb touch. Place your left hand on your left knee and your right hand in front of the lower part of your sternum (just above the solar plexus). Focus on the heart chakra on the spine at the level of the heart.
Sing the note YAM (“Y-ah-ng”)
Throat chakra – Our communication skills
Underactive effects: They tend to be shy and introverted and may not speak as much.
Overactive effects: You can tend to be a poor listener and talk too much, often keeping your distance with dominants and people.
Neck Chakra Mediation: Squeeze your thumbs on the inside of your hands without your thumbs. Let your thumbs touch the top and gently pull upwards. Focus on the throat chakra at the base of the neck.
Sing the note HAM (“H-ah-ng”)
Third eye chakra – Our ability to focus on and see the bigger picture
Place: Forehead between the eyes (also called the brow chakra).
Underactive effects: You may not be the best if you think for yourself and rely on others to make decisions for you.
Overactive effects: You may have an overactive imagination, dream a lot, or live in a world of fantasy.
Third Eye Chakra Meditation: Put your hands in front of the lower part of your chest. The middle fingers are straight and touching on top and pointing forward. The other fingers are flexed and touch the top two phalanges. The thumbs are pointing at you and touching the tips.
Focus on the third eye chakra just above the point between the eyebrows.
Sing the tone OM or AUM (“Au-ng”)
Crown chakra – The highest chakra represents our ability to be fully connected spiritually
Place: Right on top of the head.
Underactive effects: You may not be very spiritually aware or have a very rigid mindset.
Overactive effects: They can overly intellectualize things, become too fixated on spiritual needs, and potentially ignore physical needs.
Crown chakra meditation: Put your hands in front of your stomach. Let the ring fingers point up and touch their tips. Cross the rest of your fingers under your right with your left thumb.
Focus on the crown chakra on top of your head.
Sing the note NG.
Note:Do not use this meditation on the crown chakra unless you have a strong root chakra (you need a strong foundation first).
(Sources: Eclectic Energies, MindBodyGreen)
Take part in SEVEN
Challenge yourself to make YOU a priority! SEVEN is a free program from Health Promotion and Wellness for students, faculty and staff that focuses on the importance of the seven dimensions of wellbeing: emotional, environmental, intellectual, physical, social, spiritual and professional. SEVEN runs from September to the end of April and you can join at any time. Log your wellness activities to collect points for monthly competitions. Participants will also receive SEVEN newsletters and information on wellness events on campus.
For more information, see Wellness.IllinoisState.edu/Seven.