Yoga, as we all know, is about harmony between the body, mind and soul. This harmony is achieved by various means- Yama, Niyama, Asanas, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi. These eight wings or steps have been called the Eight-Fold Path or Ashtanga Yoga. Yoga works at one more level- that of meditation. Simply termed Dhyana, meditation implies full concentration and focus on various body parts. Ancient knowledge of the human body divides body energy into seven main chakras. Hence began the ancient meditative technique of focusing the mind on different chakras or energy channels in order to heal oneself mentally, emotionally and physically. Let’s get a brief on the seven main chakras and their functions:
Muladhar Chakra: This Chakra is situated three fingers below the navel and is also called the ‘Abdomen Chakra’. Here one needs to focus on the abdomen and adjoining areas to cleanse and heal oneself for ailments of the abdominal region and corresponding areas of the back; for example irregular menstrual cycle, abdominal pain, lower backache, etc.
Swadhisthana Chakra: This Chakra is located right beneath the navel and meditating on this Chakra heals the areas around the navel, stomach and corresponding areas of the back. Stomach ulcers, gastric problems, flatulence, acidity, diarrhea can easily be warded off by the right focus on the Swadhishthana Chakra.
Manipura Chakra: This Chakra is three fingers above the navel and below the rib cage at the hollow between the two lungs. Focusing the breath and mind on this Chakra relieves one of digestional problems and problems of the thoracic vertebrae.
Anahata Chakra: This is located at the centre of the body on the sternum (the breast-bone) between the two breasts. Focus on this area and you will find easy relief from pain and ailments of the heart, other coronary diseases, lungs and respiratory disorders like asthma, bronchitis, etc. This Chakra is also popularly called the ‘Heart Chakra’.
Vishuddhi Chakra: Popularly called the ‘Throat Chakra’, mindful meditation on this Chakra is very helpful for throat problems, tonsillitis, goitre, speech disorders and stammering or lisping. Since this Chakra corresponds to the area of the oesophagus (food pipe) and the trachea (wind pipe), it is beneficial to work on this Chakra for easy passage of food and breath.
Ajna Chakra: This Chakra is situated a little above the eyebrows in the forehead. The Chakra is located between the eyebrows and energizing this means attracting a whole lot of focus, concentration and energy around this part of the brain.
Sahasrara Chakra: This Chakra is the imaginary energy point right above the crown of the head in line with all the other Chakras. Energizing this point is as good as rejuvenating all the Chakras and the central nervous system of the body.
A great and ideal meditative technique would be to stay on each Chakra for five to ten minutes. In all, you should take half-an-hour to complete the Chakra meditation. This meditation alone can help you get rid of psychosomatic illnesses, biological and medical problems with ease. Happy Chakra-ing!