Have you ever wondered about chakras: what they are and why you should care?
Many people think of chakras as something New-Age-y, and to an extent they are. At least, that is how they are most often used and where you are most likely to see them discussed (for a chakra sleep meditation, scroll to the bottom of the page).
Yet, in tapping, we are using the Traditional Chinese Medicine acupressure points, and modern science is now finding evidence to prove their existence. And interestingly, there are Chinese meridian points which exactly concur with the chakra points discussed in ayurvedic texts.
Leaving all that aside, however, the very idea of creating balance through your body and mind is a very powerful one. We humans are meaning-making creatures, for whom ideas and symbols are important. After all, as shown by numerous studies into psychoneuroimmunology, what you think has a huge impact on your health and well-being.
So, we can use the concept of chakras to help create balance in our body and mind, because that is what they symbolise. And using that symbol is a way to communicate with your unconscious mind that this is your conscious goal.
What and where are the chakras?
In Ayurvedic medicine, as in Traditional Chinese Medicine, there are a large number of minor chakra points. However, they also recognise ‘meta-Chakras’, and these have been codified in yoga and other practices to a fundamental seven.
The Root Chakra
This is found at the base of the spine, and is associated with the colour red. It is said to relate to ancestral issues, to your sense of safety in the world, and to family. It is blocked by fear, and helped by trust. Its verb is: to be, and it can be related to early childhood.
The Sacral Chakra
Associated with the reproductive system, this is associated with the colour orange. Connected with sexual partners and your sense of self, it is supported by being able to adapt to others and blocked by guilt. Its verb is: to feel, and it relates to teenage.
The Solar Plexus Chakra
As the name states, this is found at the solar plexus, at the height of the navel. It can be associated with the colour yellow, and with the gut. Its aptitudes are strength, will and self-determination. Assisted by purpose, and blocked by shame, its verb is: to do. It can be associated with coming into adulthood.
The Heart Chakra
As you might imagine, this Chakra is found in the chest. Perhaps less obviously, it is associated with both pink and especially green. Its verb is: to love, and it is connected with feelings of all kinds. It is supported by love, and blocked by envy and sorrow. It is linked to emotional maturity.
The Throat Chakra
This is connected with speaking your truth, and your sense of what that means from others, too. Associated with the colour turquoise, and with communication, creativity, and resonance. Its verb is: to speak. It is supported by clarity in communication, and hindered by lies or silence. It is the first of the three ‘higher’ chakras, which correlate to the wisdom of elders.
The Third Eye/Brow Chakra
Found at the point between the eyebrows, this is linked to perception, intuition and imagination. The colour here is indigo, and the verb: to see. It is supported clarity and insight, and blocked by illusion and self-deception.
The Crown Chakra
The crown is the very top of the head. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, this is called the point of a hundred ways, while the Sanksrit term is the thousand petalled lotus. It is represented by the colour violet or white. It is said that wisdom, knowledge and spiritual connection reside here, and its verb is: to know. It is blocked by ego attachment and supported by openness to what is beyond the physical self. In psychological terms, it can be linked to the collective unconscious.
Chakras and sleep
So, what do chakras have to do with sleep?
Well, you sleep better when you are calm, when you feel balanced and well-adjusted. And you can achieve this by focusing on these different aspects of self, and on these different parts of your body, to find a sense of equilibrium.
Meditating on the chakras, directly or through the colours associated with them, is therefore a great thing to do to help you sleep. That is the core of what you do in this Under the Sea Sleep Meditation, where you will go on a journey towards slumber, finding calm and balance through the symbolism of colours.
While the meditation doesn’t directly reference the chakras, the intention to bring yourself into a state of coherence is there. And this is also supported by achieving a state of deep calm and focus through meditation. Why not give it a go and see if you sleep more easily and better after this colourful journey…