1st chakra: The element of earth
"Those who dwell among the beauties and the mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life." ~ Rachel Carson
The governing element of the 1st charkra is Earth. The 1st chakra rests near the base of the spine at the perineum. And the exploration of the element of Earth through the 1st chakra brings focus on running energy from the 1st chakra into the earth. This can be done in your seat or standing. In a standing pose, the legs provide a vehicle for that energy to travel downward and connect with the Earth, and vice versa, to travel back upward and feed the chakra. The practices listed below are opportunities to open to Earth energy, and whatever you experience beyond that is true and accurate and represents your own knowledge around Earth in your body. Rather than having an expectation of what your experience will be open up to all the possibilities. Truly we are our own masters and have the best knowledge about our own energetic systems.
An introduction to the 1st chakra
The 1st chakra, also known as the Muladhara chakra (or root chakra) is located at the base of the sushumna nadi. The nadis are energy lines running through the body, much as we speak of meridians as energy lines in the Chinese Medicine system. The sushumna is one of the the three most often discussed in yoga as it is the channel that runs up and down the spine and feeds all of the major chakras. The sushumna begins at the perineum and runs all the way up to the crown of the head. The 1st chakra is located at the perineum, at the beginning of the nadi.
In my study and experience of the 1st chakra, I have found to be that it is very much about grounding, stability and structure in our lives. It is our sense of being grounded into a place, and into our own bodies. It is very much about our relationship to our physical bodies and because asana is a physical practice, can be very much rooted into our asana practice.
After the events of Orlando I felt myself confused by my own feelings and searching for a way to bridge what I was feeling with my yoga practice. For me yoga has often been about love and surrender and allowing, but in this instance I found myself angry, hurt and confused. Love and compassion didn't feel like enough in this case and I found myself drawn again and again to the Buddhist philosophy of right action, samyak-karmanta.
What does right action mean? "This means that when we act "rightly," we act without selfish attachment to our own agendas. We act mindfully, without causing discord with our speech. Our "right" actions spring from compassion and from understanding of the dharma," writes Barbara O'Brien. And one of my favorite teachers, Thich Nhat Hanh writes "The basis of Right Action is to do everything in mindfulness."
Yoga teacher, sound healer and explorer of the inner landscape. Join me!