What is Chakra Meditation?
Chakra meditation is the best way to balance your mind and body. Having a healthy chakra system will support you in having an abundance of energy and overall balance.
Chakras are the key elements to balance a healthy lifestyle. There are seven known chakras, having one out of balance can send the whole body out of alignment. With chakra meditation one is able to notice when a chakra is out of place. There is scientific research done that states how most diseases can be cured, by having each chakra in alignment. When everything is flowing in perfect harmony, one will notice a higher energy level.
The main aim of chakra meditation is to bring awareness to a chakra. After the attention has been brought to a chakra, the prana energy from the breath is directed and guided to that chakra. This is done by consciously guiding the breath and awareness to the chakra.
There is a direct and guided very simple and straightforward practice that helps to develop concentration while paving the way to deeper states of meditation.
• Bring awareness to any single chakra.
• Inhale and guide the energy of the breath to the chakra.
• Exhale and allow awareness to settle into the chakra.
The direct and guided technique can be done for any of the chakras but it should be practiced on one chakra at a time. Before continuing with any other chakra meditation techniques let’s look at very important teaching from Kriya yoga.
Prana Energy and the Triple Divine Qualities
In Kriya yoga they speak of the triple divine qualities of subtle light, subtle sound, and subtle vibration. These faint perceptions are a gateway for cultivating awareness of prana and subtle energy. The subtle vibrations may be understood as the delicate perceptions we can feel when we place our awareness at specific points.
For instance, if you place your attention on the tip of your left little finger, you can feel a soft vibration. This sensation may feel like tingling or warmth, and it is directly related to the subtle energy currents of the nervous system. Similarly, you may place your attention at the areas on the body associated with the chakras and also perceive a subtle vibration at these centers.
• Bring your attention to the highest point on the top of the head – the crown chakra.
• Notice the perception of a gentle sensation of warmth or tingling.
• Keep your attention on this chakra.
5 Chakra Meditation Techniques
Chakras play a significant part in our life. Here are the 5 chakra meditation techniques with the help of which you can balance the chakras and allow them to function with ease creating a balanced life.
1. Light Meditation
The subtle sensations that we can feel in different regions of the body are related to the subtle vibrations that they speak of in Kriya yoga. By learning to sustain your awareness on the subtle vibrations of the chakras you will develop the capacity to perceive your energetic body and the subtle light.
This subtle light of consciousness may be perceived in a number of ways. This may be done through visualization exercises or simply by noticing a soft light when the eyes are closed.
- Close your eyes and imagine a white light at the top of your head. Have that white light go down through your head all the way down to the ground filling you with white light. You should feel relaxed and grounded.
- Close your eyes again and this time notice the energy field that you have around you. If you have trouble seeing it pretend that you have an energy field about a foot away from your body.
Your imagination is key to your chakra healing or energy healing.
2. Sound Meditation
The subtle sound is usually the most difficult to perceive, and there are three exercises we may use to attune our awareness of the subtle sounds. The first utilizes the breath and simply notices the delicate sound of the breath as it moves in and out through the nose. Notice how the sound of the in-breath is distinctly different from the sound of the out-breath.
The second exercise uses mantras in various ways. First, inhale, and then when you exhale make the OM sound with your vocal cords. Do this for several breaths. After doing this stop vocalizing the sound but continue to hear the presence of the OM sound with the exhalation. This is the audio equivalent of visualization.
The third method for hearing the subtle sound is to place both index fingers tightly in the ear so that no sound vibrations enter the ear. Notice that even when the ears are blocked there is a very distinct humming sound that seems to pervade in the background of awareness. This type of humming sound may also be ‘heard’ in quiet places in nature and in sensory deprivation tanks.
Learning to perceive the triple divine qualities is a direct method for perceiving subtle energy and its manifestations and movements. Let’s now do an exercise that integrates the ‘Direct and Guide method’ of chakra meditation with the triple divine qualities.
- Inhale in through the nose and direct and guide the energy of the breath to the third eye. Notice the perception of subtle vibration. You may also perceive or visualize subtle light.
- As you continue to direct and guide the inhalations to the third eye notice how the subtle light and vibrations of the third eye grow in intensity.
- With the exhalation allow your awareness to drop deeper into the source of the subtle light and vibration of the third eye.
When you begin working with the triple divine qualities it is suggested starting with the subtle vibration so that you can learn to feel the delicate pulsations of energy. Of the triple divine qualities, the subtle vibrations are the easiest to feel as they are related to sensory perceptions that allow us to feel our body.
As a final note you should not have to search for this feeling of subtle vibration in the chakras, just naturally perceive the sensations that are ever-present there. This may take a little practice as you develop greater mind-body awareness.
3. Color Meditation
Chakra meditation is a colorful way to enhance relaxation and a great way to center yourself before going into a deeper healing meditation.
The seven chakra colors that are represented are red, orange, yellow, blue, green, purple or indigo, and violet.
Simple techniques using the seven colorful chakras:
- When in a relaxed position, sitting in a chair, feet firmly planted on the ground, back straight and comfortable and hands in an upward position laying on your lap, and close your eyes.
- Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth for a minute or so. Focus on a small area in your mind and see the color red, then orange, then yellow, and so on down the list. As you do this you will notice the energy coming in through your body relaxing you. When you have completed going through the list, reverse start with violet, purple, blue, and green, and so on.
- When finished doing this take a deep breath and close down the seven colors so that you no longer see them. Feel your feet firmly planted on the ground. Breathe in again.
Notice if you feel more relaxed. What happened? A good way to remember how you feel is to journal about it. As the weeks go by and you continue to do this you will notice subtle changes.
Tips for seeing the colors of the seven healing chakras:
If you have difficulty at first with the colors appearing in your mind try the fruit method, red–apple, orange–orange and so on.
Each color represents one of the seven chakras or energy centers. The healing properties of each of the chakras is heightened when we meditate as it turns off the chatter of our mind.
4. Breathing Meditation
This technique aims at moving energy through and between the chakras. A basic technique for the third chakra is to breathe in through the navel and consciously direct the prana and awareness to the point on the spine opposite of the navel. Between the inhalation and exhalation, the breath can be retained while awareness is focused on the third chakra at the spine. On the exhalation feel the prana move from the point on the spine to the navel, as the exhalation proceeds continue by exhaling out of the navel.
Chakra breathing for Naval
- Breathe in through the navel while guiding the prana to the point opposite the navel on the spine.
- After the inhalation hold the attention and prana at the point on the spine.
- Exhale and feel the prana move forward from the point on the spine to the navel.
The previous exercise may be done for all the chakras except the root and crown chakras. Since the root chakra is located at the perineum, it is not possible to direct the prana from front to back with the inhalation in the same way that we can for each of the other chakras. However, we can do a similar technique by moving the prana from the perineum, to the coccyx at the tip of the spine.
Since some sources locate the root chakra at the coccyx, the following exercise is a good technique for root chakra activation. This method also prepares one for more complex spinal breathing techniques that move energy up and down the spine. Before continuing with another exercise let’s explore how the Horizontal Chakra Breathing Technique works for the heart chakra.
Chakra breathing for the Heart
- Breathe in through the center of the chest while guiding the energy of the breath to the opposite point on the spine.
- After the inhalation hold the attention and prana at the heart chakra point on the spine.
- Exhale and feel the energy move forward from the point on the spine and into the center of the chest. Notice the feeling of the heart chakra opening.
The Chakra Breathing technique is important for developing the capacity to move energy with the breath. As a complete practice you can do it by first starting with the second chakra and breathing through this chakra nine times. After this, move up to the third chakra for nine breaths, and then do the same for the heart chakra.
When you finish with the heart chakra do this same technique for the throat and third eye. Remember not to rush through these techniques. You may even find it most beneficial to practice the Chakra Breathing method for a week, or even a month, before moving on to the next exercise.
5. The Perineum Pump and Mula Bandha Meditation
The purpose of this exercise is to learn to feel the movement of subtle energy as it moves from the root chakra and up the spine. Although it is similar to mula bandha, here I describe a simple method that is suitable for a wide range of people. Remember that this article is not written as an overly theoretical description of chakra meditation and other traditional yoga techniques. It is written in a style that provides easy to use practical instructions for learning to activate your chakras through breathing.
- Bring your awareness to the perineum.
- Contract the muscles of the perineum by pulling up.
- Bring awareness to a rising sensation that moves in a line from the perineum to the tip of the tailbone.
This exercise is the basic technique of mula bandha and simply involves contracting the muscles of the perineum. Of note in this exercise is the way that we are feeling the movement of the energy from the perineum to the coccyx when the muscles are contracted.
- While inhaling direct and guide the awareness and energy to the perineum, at the same time contract the perineum.
- As you continue to inhale feel the prana move up to the coccyx.
- Direct and guide the energy of the in-breath from the perineum to the coccyx as you contract the muscles of the perineum.
- At the end of the inhalation, the prana and awareness should be placed at the coccyx.
When this exercise is done properly you will notice the rising of prana energy from the perineum to the coccyx.
The above technique combines the Direct and Guide method with mula bandha and allows us to feel how energy moves upward. This method of feeling prana move upwards with the in-breath is a very common technique in pranayama and will be used in a number of different ways. Clearly understanding and feeling the internal movement of energy, as taught in the above exercise, is extremely important for working with more advanced techniques.