The Chakra System

May 5, 2009

Human beings are a combination of mental, emotional, psychological and spiritual currents of energy that come together to form the physical body. These currents of energy create an energy flow and this energy flow, both within and around you, is controlled by your thoughts, which in turn determine how you feel and what you experience. Your most frequent thoughts, such as those about love, work, spirituality etc, affect the energy centres which push our vital life energy (also known as ki, chi and prana in Eastern cultures) through the body. These energy centres are the Chakras, a Sanskrit word which literally means ‘wheel’. The visual image of the Chakras is of wheels of light, spinning in a clockwise direction and drawing in energy from the universal energy field to revitalise our whole being. As they spin at different speeds, each emits a different light frequency, which is why each chakra is seen as a different colour from the spectrum.

Energy flows into the body through the chakras from both directions. The root chakra takes in energy from the earth, keeping us grounded and giving us stability, whilst the crown chakra brings in higher spiritual energy from above. All of the chakras are connected – the root and crown chakras form a vertical axis which runs through the centre of all the other chakras, whilst the chakras at the sacral, solar plexus, heart, throat and third eye can be perceived at both the front and back of the body, and are connected centrally at the spinal column. Ideally there should be a free flow of energy in these central chakras from front to back and back to front (see diagram below).


This interdependence between all the chakras also means that an energy block in one will disturb the energy flow and consequently, affect the function of all of them, which  could potentially cause physical, emotional and/or spiritual distress. We develop energy blocks to protect ourselves from issues which are too difficult to process at the time. An open chakra means that we have to deal with the energy and the associated psychological issues that are flowing through it, and sometimes we are unable to deal with the emotional pain involved with this. It is at these times that we develop a block. When a block occurs, the corresponding chakra is unable to function adequately – it may be spinning too slowly, in the wrong direction, out of balance, or actually damaged to the point of being unable to open and close as you choose.  There are a number of different types of energy block, each corresponding to psychological defence mechanisms, and all of which serve different functions. These include:

  • the suppression of feelings usually leading to depression and despair (usually a heart chakra block)
  • compression and compaction mainly of rage which is perceived as potentially destructive if it’s allowed to erupt (usually a solar plexus block)
  • freezing of feelings, often resulting in a lot of tension and a need to defend against any further possible attack (usually a heart chakra block)
  • depletion of energy and abdication of power rendering the person apparently helpless and in need of much support from others, hence protecting them from having to accept personal accountability and responsibility ( either solar plexus and/or sacral block)
  • denial, which is usually a product of fear. Here the person will often behave as though everything is fine while underneath there is chaos to such a degree that its confrontation needs to be avoided at all costs to avoid possible breakdown (this can be present with a block at any chakra)

(source: The Rainbow Journey: Seven Steps to Self Healing
by Dr Brenda Davies)

Many people use a combination of these blocks and move between them, depending on the issues prevalent in their life at the time. Blocks are necessary at times to regulate the flow of energy, depending upon what we feel we can cope with. However, problems occur when these blocks become permanent or when they become habitual ways of damming the flow and avoiding certain aspects of ourselves. For example, our life energy is necessary to ensure our vitality and intuition so when negativity becomes a permanent state of mind, negative thoughts fill our chakras with dark, dense energy, rendering them dirty, shrunken or swollen – and you will find yourself  feeling out of balance, losing your intuition and feeling tired or listless. With cleansed and balanced chakras, we achieve a natural state of high energy, intuition and creativity so by clipping away at the fears and baggage which block those qualities – giving our chakras a thorough spring clean, so to speak– we can find our way towards Inner Simplicity. Acquiring a deeper knowledge and awareness of the chakra system – and the life issues, age stages and physical parts each chakra represents – will empower you to self-heal and consequently achieve holistic well-being.

Tomorrow we’ll explore the root chakra in more depth.

Further reading:

Awakening Intuition by Mona Lisa Schulz

Chakra Clearing by Doreen Virtue

Working with Your Chakras by Ruth White



  1. […] discussed the chakra system in depth in other blog entries (for an overview see here and for more detailed descriptions of each chakra, see here). If our chakras become imbalanced due […]

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