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chakras and subtle energy bodies

When I start talking about chakra dance, a lot of people stop me to ask what a chakra is. They’ve usually heard the word before but aren’t quite sure what a chakra actually is.

Chakra is a Sanskrit word that means “wheel” or “disc” but when you hear people talk about chakras today, they’re usually referring to the seven major energy centers in our body that run from the base of your spine up and out through the crown of your head.

You can think of the chakra energy system as a highway traveling through your energetic body, with each chakra point being an area of condensed swirling energy.

1st chakra — Root Chakra, or Muladhara — base of the spine

2nd chakra — Sacral Chakra, or Svadhisthana — pelvic basin

3rd chakra — Solar Plexus Chakra, or Manipura — above the navel

4th chakra — Heart Chakra, or Anahata — at the heart center

5th chakra — Throat Chakra, or Vishuddha — the throat area

6th chakra — Third Eye Chakra, or Ajna — the place on your forehead just above the mid point between your eyebrows

7th chakra — Crown Chakra, or Sahaswara — the place in the air above the crown of your head

what is a chakra

Keeping the energy moving in our seven energy centers is key to feeling great and being able to pick up the sensory messages that come our way every day.

If you’re not staying conscious throughout the day to take full breaths and get oxygen moving along your body’s energetic highway, it can be easy to miss the clues that our physical senses and intuition try to send us throughout each day.

Some people talk about keeping your chakras “open” but for me it’s easier to think of it in terms of just staying aware of my breath. If I’m paying attention throughout the day to take measured full breaths and fill up the different nooks and crannies in my belly and ribs and shoulders, it feels like my whole spine and front body is able to sense my surroundings pretty well.

If I start getting sidetracked or stressed and lose the attention on my breath, afterwards I notice that my body feels more rigid and that the chatter in my head is a lot louder than normal.

I think this happens because when we’re not breathing fully, we literally cut off oxygen and energy to the parts of our body that help us sense the physical world around us. When this happens, our “logical” brain jumps in to try and protect us because we’re not paying attention fully to our surroundings. 

what is a chakra

And in this effort to protect us, our mind tries to fill the sensory void with what it understands to be important information based on past experiences or habitual, close to the surface stories that have—one way or the other—ended up being programmed to play on loop in our head.

So the more we become aware of these energy centers, the more able we become to literally feel and move energy in our bodies.. whether it’s a pleasant energy or a not-so-pleasant energy.

Want to know more about how to find and feel your chakras? Download the complimentary Chakra Quick Guide now!