There are countless articles online and books to flip through that give a wonderful listing and basic intro to each chakra. This is not one of those posts.
I read the lists. How do they pertain to me, and my life? How do I take all of those lofty concepts and put them to use? How can I balance my own body, mind, and soul? I don’t really believe that covering myself in orange silk, while drinking warm milk and honey, humming vam, and studying the nature of the crocodile is going to heal my adrenal fatigue. While that does sound like a really good time, I need more. I need the science. I need the Swami meets Dr. Oz type break down. I don’t think I am alone in this. As I study mine more fully, I want to help you study yours.
Connecting the metaphysical.
I first noticed the connections between our Subtle Chakra Body, and our physical body when I saw a map of the nervous system. It hit me like WHAM. Each Chakra has a major Plexus, a beautiful flower-like nerve bundle shooting out of the spine feeding a set of organs. Integrated with that nerve bundle, is our vascular system, and lymphatic system. On top of that, in each organ group being fed by this beautiful flower is a major endocrine organ.
Here in the Sacral bundle lies the Svadhisthana chakra. All these networks feed and swirl around the kidneys, adrenal glands, urinary tract, bladder, and gonads. The ends culminate in the clitoris and tip of the penis, our most sensitive buttons to touch and share with another person. Our adrenal glands sit on top of the kidneys and are the mother of the gonads, controlling production and release of key hormones such as adrenaline, cortisol, estrogen, progesterone, and a bunch others.
External input, like the foods we eat, time of day, and emotional reactions to our lifestyles inform the body as to which hormones to up regulate, and which ones to down regulate. I strongly believe that by changing your lifestyle and gaining emotional freedom has enormous healing potential for any hormone driven disease, because of this mind-body connection. A balanced chakra leads to balanced hormones, a key to a healthy and disease free body.
A matter of energy.
In traditional chinese medicine the pancreas harnesses energy from food, where it is then stored by the kidneys. Once in the kidneys, our energy can be cultivated into a deeper well of endurance and vivaciousness, called “Jing”. Descriptions of Jing line up perfectly with the Hindu concept of an open second chakra. As adrenal fatigue continues to become more well known, one can see how a worn out adrenal or renal system is a life with low energy and stressful emotional swings. The connection between the philosophies becomes easier to see.
I am beginning to see the adrenals as a deep well of Jing vitality. This strength of endurance is reliant on one’s adrenal system’s ability to hold onto and cultivate Qi (life force). The Qi is harnessed by the Pancreas, or root chakra, from our food and influenced by feeling of safety and having basic needs met. Qi is also harnessed by our lungs, in the 5th chakra. The 5th chakra is influenced by purity, honesty, and grief. The adrenals or kidneys are of the second chakra, influenced by fear, stress, and fulfillment in personal relationships.
Stress and fear squash the second chakra. Overuse of adrenaline and cortisol deplete the body, zap energy, and close the 2nd chakra. Chronic stress and fear, lead to adrenal fatigue, PMS, low libido, and imbalances throughout the hormonal system right up to the thyroid. A lack of connection in the root chakra, cuts out the supply of Qi, and life becomes hard, exhausting, and intolerable.
A healthy Svadhisthana is a deep well of vibrant energy and joy.
Self-Love and Self-Care
Most often we have no trouble opening the second chakra. It is a land of pleasure. A land of hedonistic play with food, sex, drugs, naps, clothing, fast cars, shoes, and luxury. All so ooey gooey for the senses, but may leave life feeling empty. Our self worth can get wrapped up in the how much and how good of all the stuff.
This chakra also speaks to our one on one relationships with others. Again our self worth gets measured by an outside source. Am I funny enough, pretty enough, smart enough, strong enough, tough enough? Am I successful enough? Am I enough? We get so wrapped up in these relationships with others that our own inner value and self love become lost. We weigh in what others think of us , our actions, and stuff as the measure of the value of our lives.
This external validation is so deeply integrated into our culture that the concept of Self-Love has become a hot topic in the alternative health sphere. I too came across it the first time all curious, “Self-Love? Tell me how! What is this Self-care concept?”. Getting over the trap of feeling selfish is a tough one. But let me tell you, loving yourself deeply makes it easier to be loved, and to love others. Put the oxygen mask on yourself first, then help others. Build a deep reservoir of the invaluable.
It is easy to open this chakra, and bask in the warm orange glow. Sleep in the arms of a lover, while eating treats, and consuming intoxicants. Use of things and want of stuff to drive your career, to drive your motivations. It gets comfortable to be full of fear and attachment. We fall into a cycle of emptying the well, filling it fast easy and cheap, empty it faster, fill it cheaper, empty, fill, empty, fill, till exhaustion. These physical parts wear out.
I say Open, fully blossom, and go through.
Move the power up, advance to the next plane.
Tap open that bottomless self refueling well of the great divine.
More articles on the Svadhisthana coming soon to Pickling Salt.