The below-mentioned Vedic verse describes how kundalini will be moving through the anahata chakra अनाहत: चक्र, and what would be its traits and behaviour when it will be hosted there.
We shall now discuss about the adhara lotus, which is attached to the mouth of the sushumna and is placed below the genitals and above the anus. It has four petals of crimson hue. Its head (mouth) hangs downwards and on the petals, are inscribed four letters from Va to Sa, of the shining colour of gold.
Anahata chakra अनाहत: चक्र is a Sanskrit connotation which in English would translate to, sound from one origin. It is worth mentioning that sound is normally created by contradicting behaviour of two things with one hitting and the other opposing. Like, when you clap, one hand is hitting the other hand whereby the other is trying to resist and hold on to its position or it can also be that both the hands are trying to hit and displace each other. The sound created from a particular origin when there is no contradictory stance or view or even engagement of the other, is anahata chakra अनाहत: चक्र. This is the chakra where your first introduction to “self” happens. It is here, where one discovers the difference and disparity between “my and self”.
The name of this chakra signifies a state of freshness that unfolds, whereby a person is able to detach himself/herself and look at different and apparently contradictory experiences of life with a spirit of openness (expansion). Normally, we are not accustomed to the effect produced, following the confrontation of two opposite forces. Characteristically, in anahata chakra, there exists a possibility to integrate the two opposite forces and obtain the desired effect (sound, in this case), without any trigger of confrontation between the two. This energy is specific to cooperation and integration, which brings peace and a new perspective in a world which, so far up to this level (considering only the energies specific to the first three centres of force: mooldhara, manipura and swadishthana), was comprised of a more or less conscious confrontation between the opposite forces. The name anahata suggests, in fact, a synergetic effect of the interaction of energies at this level.
There are twelve petals which are inscribed with the following Sanskrit syllables:
The above syllables could be understood as corresponding to twelve divine qualities of the heart, namely:
In common parlance, systems of understanding identify these divine qualities comparable to various reflexive modifications, away from the undifferentiated divine mind, with each one deemed as arising from the spiritual ignorance, viz.:
Asha: wish, desire, hope
Chinta: thoughtfulness, anxiety
Mamta: possessiveness, fondness
Dhamba: arrogance, vanity
Ahamkara: conceit, egoism, pride
Lolata: covetousness, avarice
Kapata: duplicity, hypocrisy
Vitarka: indecision, argumentativeness
Anutapa: regret, burning misery
As per the Vedas, the sound created by this chakra is absolute in itself and has no recoiling, thereby meaning that there is no necessity for any rebound of the strike, for the sound to be sensed as complete. I would like to assert here, that in Sanskrit language, phonetics play a dominant role. Phonetics is basically musical/sound notes, which really do not have a meaning but definitely make and provide/extend “sense to the senses”. For this very reason, we can safely presume why there cannot be a meaning attached to the “beej mantras”, since they entail a sense which can only be experienced. In Sanskrit, the energies are not driven by psychology (as when one is able to comprehend with the meaning of the things, corresponding emotions develop), but by those mantras which are a part of the real essence of the energies. My aim to highlight this subject matter was simply intended to avoid getting baffled by meanings in Google or the narratives extended by others. Rather, one should try and find out the meaning of the phonemes being mentioned as “chakra mantras”, by experiencing the sense they transpire within. The role of the mantras and the way they should be recited would be duly addressed in another book.
Sound created by this chakra can be understood as the one generated, while clapping with a single hand. This is the sound which is complete and without any rebound. This is the chakra which germinates the consciousness to go beyond the five senses and experience life without having any defined “perspectives”. As mentioned, it being non-contradictory in its virtue, this chakra also doesn’t create taste, smell, and feel but by using this chakra in physical world, the sense of “touch” is what drives it. Quite confusing as it may sound, read each word again diligently and you would be able to derive the appropriate and correct conclusion and understand this chakra better before initiating the stimulations and the consequent activation of this chakra.
Anahata is associated with the ability to make decisions outside the realm of karma. In Manipura and below, a person is bound by the laws of karma and fate. In anahata, one makes decisions (by following one’s heart”), based on one’s higher self, and not by the unfulfilled emotions and desires of a lower nature. Accordingly, it is known as the heart chakra. It is also associated with love and compassion, charity towards others and psychic healing. Meditation in this chakra is known to bring about the following siddhis (abilities): one becomes a lord of speech, one is dear to women, one’s presence controls the senses of others, and one can leave and enter the body at will.
Below anahata (at the solar plexus or sometimes on the near left side of the body), is a minor chakra known as hrit (or hriday, viz. “heart”), with eight petals. It has three regions, namely, a vermilion sun region, within which exists a white moon region, and further within which, is a deep-red fire region. Within this, exists a red wish-fulfilling tree, which symbolises the ability to manifest what one wishes to happen in the world.
Hrit chakra is sometimes also known as the surya (sun) chakra, which is located slightly to the left, below the heart. Its role is to absorb energy from the sun and provide heat to the body and other chakras (manipura in particular, to which it delivers the fire element).
The stimulations for this chakra are felt in and around the mid-rib area on the front side first and then post its establishment, the tingling sensations travel back to the lungs. When that happens and if you are observant enough, one would feel both sides of the chest in the mid-rib area, resonating with these tingling feelings and that too at a significant frequency and pitch. There are 12 major channels and 8 minor channels/tributaries which form part of this chakra and there are an equal number of openings through which the energy moves out and travels to other chakras and organs of the body. It is worth mentioning that for upward movement of the energy to take place, the next three chakras have to be mandatorily active, or else one won’t be able to taste the essence of upward movement of the energy.
This chakra, apart from gains in the spiritual facet, also does contribute towards the societal life. The usage of words, the concepts, preferred companionship, the texture of tone, the sense of compassion, and the emotional quotient are some of the traits governed and guided by the energies of and from this chakra. This chakra encompasses the role of a power provider, responsible for balancing/regulating the flow of energy in all the chakras, provided they are activated. As such, the energy is not channeled in a unilateral direction, i.e. the energy is not only supposed to flow from the anahata chakra to other chakras, but is deemed the other way round also. The energy from the other chakras, especially from the lower three chakras (mentioned in the previous chapters), too moves upwards towards the heart chakra to blend. Anahata is said to be near to the heart. Due to its connection with touch (sense) and actions, it is associated with the skin and hands. In the endocrine system of the brain, anahata is said to be linked with the thalamus.
External and internal beauty, solace and comfort are the three major attributes necessary for an equitable functioning of this chakra. If one possesses these three virtues, there is a greater possibility that a person has already activated the anahata chakra, which is very much depicted in the yantra of this chakra too. Since this chakra is a confluence of air, water, earth, fire and ether, there is always a formation of newer shapes and designs. Thoughts of a person, performance scale of organs receiving, assimilating and transmitting the energy to and fro, flow of blood, oxygen richness of arteries and veins, are a few examples to understand the multi-faceted tasks this chakra engages in the domain of physical essence. The role of this chakra in the spiritual realm is mirrored by the contradictions in the behaviour of this chakra which are sublimed in a way that although one remains living but is yet non-contradictory. This component is better comprehended by experiencing it rather than relying on the theoretical aspect.
The basic and main sound from this chakra can be generated by holding the air in your heart, throat and under your tongue and then releasing it in the following order:
The above process is one of the methods for stimulating and activating this chakra. It shall be further illustrated in the mantra recitation segment in greater detail.
When this chakra gets activated, you would no longer be a prisoner of your own convictions but would rather be open to new learning and the ability to acquire and implement knowledge, which would be more experience-based than just being “hearsay”. You would be clear in your thoughts and there won’t be sacristy towards new things. You would be in possession of a reinvigorated memory and steer clear of distasteful experiences of the past. You will have a revitalized approach towards life and a more compassionate attitude towards others. You would be inclined towards the cosmic part of the universe, and there shall be an inclination to pursue what is not visible viz. “the energies”. You would be poetic in your conversations and prefer to speak softly.
When dysfunctional, your traits would just be the opposite of what they should have been when anahata chakra is activated. You would be stubborn and adamant about your possessions. You would lack logic in your debates and even a little spark would prompt you to engage in a fight. You would easily succumb to arguments and physical altercations and intentionally like to suppress and harass people.
These manifestations apart, a dysfunctional anahata chakra also translates into physical inconveniences like stiff chest, stooping/bending of back while walking, curved-in and stiff/frozen shoulders. Mentally, an imbalanced heart chakra can result in issues such as co-dependence, manipulative behaviour, feeling of unworthiness, and inability to trust yourself or others.
The behavioral aspects of element air, in this chakra, can be classified into five different types of variations, namely:
Praan Vaayu प्राणवायू: This can be understood as one which regulates and controls the organs and their functions.
Vyaan Vaayu व्यानवायू: This can be inferred as one which imparts taste and flavours in life. Holistically, it may be conspicuous in relationships, or in our association with nature, or even in the basics of how and what we perceive about ourselves.
Smaan Vaayu समानवायू: This can be implied as one defining the legitimacy of things by furnishing logics and keeping convictions at bay.
Apaan Vaayu अपानवायू: This can be perceived as one which is responsible for the excretion of all types of “toxins” and waste from the body.
Udaan Vayu उदानवायू: This can be understood as a form of air element responsible for regulation of heat. In other words, the maintenance and regulation of the water element in this chakra is ascertained by this aspect of element air.
Element air has two major variants—one that could be felt in the air around and the other that is present in the body. According to the Vedas, there are 49 such sub-types of air elements which are present in a human body. Irrespective of the age and size, the role of the above mentioned five variants can be broken down to 49 sub-types.
Mellowing down and softening of your stance, either psychologically or physically, furthers the possibility and provisions of bonding, may it be with an idea or with the energies. Simply putting, the feasibility exists if there is a “provision” of acceptability. There needs to be a harmonious integration between the heart chakra, the lower three chakras and the two chakras above. Sahastradhara chakra is independent of all these prerequisites and can only be activated once the 6 major chakras and 108 minor chakras are activated, to facilitate smooth movement of energy in all these chakras, whilst making its presence felt in the anahata chakra.
Before you decide on to adopt the accepted measures to stimulate and initiate the process of activating the anahata chakra, the following methodology should be adhered to:
Sit in a quiet and comfortable position in a dim lit room, where deep inhaling and exhaling could be managed.
When you have inhaled sufficiently, protrude your chest outwards and hold onto the position for as long as you can.
While holding onto this position of chest protruding out, try to squeeze your belly inside, in order to create a striking difference between the chest and the abdomen.
Continuing with the position outlined in (c), lift your shoulders upwards and then pull them down immediately in a shoulder shrugging manner.
Try and get a sense of the enhanced heart beat while maintaining your focus on the same.
Feel the sensations in your body, while upholding the position mentioned in points (b) and (c).
Feel the varying temperatures in your lower chakras; the mooldhara chakra should be heated or warm, while the swadishthana chakra would be cold and the manipura chakra would be resonating with varying degree of heat and cold temperatures. If these attributes are lacking, repeat the procedure from (a) to (d).
Exhale and repeat this exercise for at least 8-10 times for the anahata chakra and stimulation of the lower three chakras before commencing the yog aasan associated with this chakra.
For the stimulation and activation of this chakra, control over “breath” is quite crucial. Breathing is the only activity which defines all of us as living. For this chakra, breath would be the focal point. How deep can one inhale and the duration of exhaling are the defining factors for this chakra. Inhalation of oxygen provides energy to the body and the organs to function properly. Greater the inhalation, greater would be the supply of oxygen to these organs. Comparatively, when we exhale, we are downsizing stress. Resultantly, longer is the exhaling process, greater would be the stress released. Therefore, keep your focus on breath, as this would be the key to accomplish the endeavour of activating the anahata chakra.
For this chakra, breath is the most crucial and important factor. It would be the breathing patterns which will determine the course of activating this chakra. To start with, establish a comfortable position. I would advise against sitting on a bed or on a soft mattress in order to ensure an erect back. Instead, you can choose to sit on a sofa or a chair if sitting on the floor is cumbersome. Now, inhale softly but deeply and continue with the same till you hit the limit of bending your back or sensing some imbalance. Secure the breath in your lungs, and try to push the inhaled air from the front part of your lungs to the back part. At this point, while attempting to exhale, take the breath to the tip of the nostrils (don’t let it go out) and then suck it in to the back of lungs. Repeat this exercise as per your comfort zone. Before slowly letting the air exhale, repeat the process for around 30-50 times (depending upon the capacity of your lungs). More importantly, before attempting this exercise, duly consult a doctor about your physical status and only contemplate engaging into it, post the approval and consent of your doctor.
Physical Yog योग
Chakra Swas Aasan चक्रस्वाँसआसन
We shall start with a very basic and easy exercise. Position yourself in sidh aasan सिद्धआसन or padma aasan पद्माआसन with bent elbows, and hands resting/fingers touching the shoulder. While in this position, inhale deeply and hold the breath in your lungs. To exhale, push the air out of your lungs whilst straightening your hands upwards. Repeat this exercise for at least 20-40 times, without resting in between. This exercise shall stimulate your anahata chakra while extending stimulations to your mooldhara chakra too.
(Refer to Illustration 5.1: Chakra Swas Aasan चक्रस्वाँसआसन at Page No. 113)
Yog Mudra योगमुद्रा
For performing this aasan, you need to stand straight with an erect back. Now, stretch your legs just a little apart sideways. From this position, try and clasp fingers of both the hands at the back. Hold this position for a while and then in that clasped state of fingers, try and move your hands away from the body, corresponding with the forward bending of your body till the time your upper torso is almost perpendicular to the ground below. Hold onto this position as per your comfort levels without feeling breathless. Return to the original position of standing straight with legs a bit apart from each other. Repeat this exercise for at least 30 times before moving onto the next exercise. This exercise would help in release of stress in the chest area, shoulders, back, and the cervical and neck area, apart from providing ease in breathing, which as mentioned above, is one of the most crucial components for activating the anahata chakra.
(Refer to Illustration 5.2: Yog Mudra योगमुद्रा at Page No. 113)
Gaumukh Aasan गौमुखआसन
For performing this aasan, you need to stand straight on a firm ground with your feet at a comfortable distance from each other. Now, bend your right hand and the portion of the hand which is below the elbow. Move it towards the back of your chest in the bent arm position and try touching it with your neck or shoulders from the back. When this posture is attained, raise your left hand and bend it in such a way that fingers of the left hand should clap with those of the right hand. Hold it as long as you are comfortable without stretching dangerously, to avoid damage to the neck and cervical muscles. Return to the normal standing position with hands at the side of your body. Repeat this exercise with the left hand in the back position and right hand clasping it. Rerun this exercise for at least 30-60 times with the period of holding the clasped hands nothing less than 60-80 seconds.
(Refer to Illustration 5.3: Gaumukh Aasan गौमुखआसन at Page No. 114)
Parig Aasan प्रिगआसन
For performing this aasan, stand straight with your legs comfortably placed sideways and stretched apart. Now, bend your right knee and sit on the bent right leg while keeping your left leg stretched, resting on its heel. Even as you maintain this position, with your right hand, try touching the ground around the calf muscle of your bent right leg while keeping your left hand fully stretched over the head. Now, bend backwards while keeping your eyes on the spread out fingers of your left hand. Make an effort to hold onto this position for a convenient time period, without feeling breathless. Return to the original position of standing, with legs comfortably stretched apart. Repeat this exercise with the other leg, allowing the same duration. It is strongly recommended to solicit a doctor’s advice before undertaking the above exercise or any other for that matter.
(Refer to Illustration 5.4: Parig Aasan प्रिगआसन at Page No. 114)
Mtsaya Aasan मत्स्यआसन
To carry out this aasan, lie down on your back with your hands comfortably resting around the waist area. Now, try and bend your head inwards so that your chest and shoulders are slightly lifted from the floor while keeping your hands on the ground. Try to accommodate the entire load of chest and shoulders on your neck area with no assistance from arms. Maintain this position for as long as you can, without inviting any strain on the neck, back, and cervical area. It is essential not to hold the stretched position while feeling breathless, ensuring that breathing remains normal.
(Refer to Illustration 5.5: Mtsaya Aasan मत्स्यआसन at Page No. 115)
Ustr Aasan उस्त्रआसन
For performing this aasan, sit on the bent knees whilst keeping your spine erect and shoulders comfortably spread and the chest area protruding out. Now place your hands on the waist, and push the chest further in front while bending your spine backwards. The degree of bending the spine is entirely dependent on your flexibility levels. Further, touch the heels of the feet with your hands and maintain this position for a significant period. Under no circumstances, try and overdo, as it may prove detrimental for the back.
(Refer to Illustration 5.6: Ustr Aasan उस्त्रआसन at Page No. 115)
Bhujang Aasan भुजंगआसन
For performing this aasan, lie down on your belly and bring your folded arms close to your chest and using the strength of your arms with the support of spine muscles, lift your upper torso from the ground while keeping your pelvis and lower torso on the ground. Now, lift your body and stretch backwards while keeping the maximum weight on the arms, which would be almost straight by now. Remain in this position as per your comforting levels and slowly return to the position of lying on your belly.
(Refer to Illustration 5.7: Bhujang Aasan भुजंगआसन at Page No. 116)
Adho Mukhvkr Aasan आदोमुख्व्क्रआसन
For realizing this aasan, you would require a table or have to stand next to a wall. Stand straight with your legs comfortably placed apart. Bend forward and try to touch the ground in front of you with your palms. Hold onto this position, and place your right foot on the table and lift your left leg and accordingly place it on the table (if you choose to do it against the wall, then lift your right leg and place your foot firmly and completely against the wall and raise your left leg adjacent to the right leg). Preferably, the height of the table should be close to your waist length. Initially, you may choose to keep the height lower and try and balance your weight on your legs and arms. Try maintaining this position for a comfortable duration while simultaneously balancing your weight. You can now slowly return to the standing position before repeating the exercise. The advanced version of this exercise is sheesh aasan शीषआसन, which should only be attempted under an expert supervision.
(Refer to Illustration 5.8: Adho Mukhvkr Aasan आदोमुख्व्क्रआसन at Page No. 116)
Urdv Dhanur Aasan ऊर्ध्वधनुरआसन
To perform this aasan, you need to lie on your back and bend the knees one by one. While sticking to this position, lift your right hand and bend it in a way that the palm of the right hand rests near the back of the right shoulder. Repeat the same with the other hand also.
Now, try and lift your chest, shoulders and belly on your arms while letting your pelvis weight supported by the legs. Try and push your belly outwards while maintaining the stretched posture. Pursue this exercise only after duly consulting your doctor.
(Refer to Illustration 5.9: Urdv Dhanur Aasan ऊर्ध्वधनुरआसन at Page No. 117)
Hand Formulations बंध
Since anahata chakra is the one responsible for governing the emotions, and their generation and interpretation, there can be no discounting the fact that all what is “life” are just emotions. It is these emotions which have been a driving force—even while you are browsing through this book to stimulate and activate your chakras for making your life better than what is now, is a manifestation of these emotions.
The hand formulations बंध for this chakra is denominated as rudra mudra रुद्रमुद्रा. To form this mudra, join the tips of your thumb, index finger and the ring finger. As this formulation is effectual in stimulating the three elements viz. earth, ether and fire, only forming the mudra won’t suffice. One needs to be observant about the changes, consequential upon forming this mudra.
One should be able to sense the variation in temperature in all the three fingers, namely, thumb, index, and the ring finger. If you are benumbed of the senses so generated, you need to refocus in a righteous manner.
(Refer to Illustration 5.10: Hand Formulations [Rudra Mudra) at Page No. 117)
Focus-based Exercises ध्यानक्रिया
These exercises entail your complete attention on the mid-rib point of chest area. Do not get distracted when you start feeling the tingling stimulations in that area. Let the tingling sensations persist while you focus on the mid-rib point area of chest and feel the rise and fall in temperature.
Mantras Recitation मंत्रउच्चारण
The mantra for the anahata chakra is
During the recitation of this mantra, one would be biologically tempted to exhale. However, try to inhale during the recitation of the correct texture. As outlined in the Vedas, and also experienced otherwise, the best results are obtained when recited while inhaling.
This mantra has proven effective in curing several psychological ailments also. Undoubtedly, there are variations which need to be incorporated, and presumably, the best results are achieved, if done under an expert supervision.
Naad Kriya धुनीयोग
To be able to hear and sense the movement of energy in the anahata chakra, sit in a relaxed posture (avoid sitting on a bed). You may choose to close your eyes if you concentration levels are not too high and you get distracted by the sight/vision sense. Now, focus on the end part of your rib cage and hear the movement of energy travelling inward and outward because of the anahata chakra. Keep your concentration stable and hear the movement. You may hear certain rumbling sounds initially and after sometime, these sounds would change into that of a gong, or a chime (depending upon what is the activation level of your lower three chakras).
Yantra Sadhna यंत्रसाधना
This yantra of root chakra is formed by positioning the body (using hands/arms, legs) in such a way that when you breathe, the stimulations caused by the usual posture of the body occur at the root chakra. For root chakra, twist your legs in such a way that they entangle/grope each other while standing and repeat the same for the arms too with a subtle difference, that at the end of the groping of arms, the palms of the hands face each other.
Hold onto this position while breathing normally, till the time you are comfortable. Now, gently entangle your arms and legs, and relax by engaging into normal stretching exercises and then repeat it again. It is desired that your total holding period for this formulation should be at least 20 minutes (inclusive of the repetitions) initially, and it may further be increased as per your strength and endurance.
Tantra Sadhna तंत्रसाधना
This facet of the chakra meditation is beyond the ambit of this book.
Illustrative Representation of Aasana’s
Illustration 5.1: Chakra Swas Aasan चक्रस्वाँसआसन
Illustration 5.2: Yog Mudra योगमुद्रा
Illustration 5.3: Gaumukh Aasan गौमुखआसन
Illustration 5.4: Parig Aasan प्रिगआसन
Illustration 5.5: Mtsaya Aasan मत्स्यआसन
Illustration 5.6: Ustr Aasan उस्त्रआसन
Illustration 5.7: Bhujang Aasan भुजंगआसन
Illustration 5.8: Adho Mukhvkr Aasan आदोमुख्व्क्रआसन
Illustration 5.9: Urdv Dhanur Aasan ऊर्ध्वधनुरआसन
Illustration 5.10: Hand Formulations [Rudra Mudra)