The chakras lie in the central nervous system (the brain and spine), which controls all the functions of the body and mind. Chakra meditations focus awareness onto the spine at specific areas where the controlling points for the chakras lie.
The spine is the axis of our being
The embryo in the womb first creates the central spinal axis and then the body grows around this axis, the axis of our individual world. The top and bottom of the body, the two sides and the back and front of the body develop soon after. We then spend the rest of our life with our spine “behind” us. We face the world and all of life moves from back to front, from the spine into the world.
The chakras lie in the spine and transmute the vast cosmic forces of the universe, bringing them down from a cosmic order of magnitude to a level that we can safely use. Physical and psychological energies in the chakras then motivate our body and mind, creating thoughts, feelings, and desires that motivate us to move forward into the world.
The spine is the basis of individual consciousness
To work with the chakras we need to take our awareness back into our spinal cord. The physical spine is one of the primary supporting structures for our body and mind. It is also the basis of our individual consciousness as the spinal cord because the nerve cells within the spine carry all the nerve signals that are required to sustain our waking, dreaming and sleeping states of being.
The spine is controlled by the maha gunas
The maha gunas (the elements of reality) govern the physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual functions of the spine and are the basis for individual consciousness:
- Tamas governs structure and creates the physical structure of the spine.
- Rajas governs movement and creates nervous energy and prana, the basis of physical and mental energy.
- Sattwa governs awareness and creates individual awareness and the higher aspects of the mind.
Complex patterns of nerves and chemicals in the brain and in the spine, the physical basis for the chakras, are formed by tamas and motivated by rajas. They create the physical basis for the chakras to express themselves into the world. When sattwa dominates over tamas and rajas the bones, nerves, and chakras are healthy.
When they are not balanced we suffer. If tamas or rajas are in excess sattwa cannot operate freely. We lose awareness or experience some form of weaknesses, either a blockage or dysfunction that we will need to manage if we are to regain balance and health.
Awaken the spiritual spine through meditation
Cultivating our spiritual spine enables us to use the energy and abilities within each chakra to heal, strengthen and balance ourselves. We can transform ourselves into powerful, aware and compassionate beings who are in touch with the vast cosmic forces of creation and beyond.
Yoga asana (postures and stretching) and pranayama (breath control) create a strong and flexible spine. They open the channels of the spine and support the unimpeded flow of nerve impulses, prana, and mental and spiritual energies.
Ajapa japa meditation is one of the simplest and most powerful ways to awaken the spiritual spine. In this practice, the breath, a mantra, and our mind and awareness are all fused into a potent force that is made to travel up and down the spine. This combines and integrates physical, energetic and psychological energies to purify and transform body, mind, and consciousness. Old impurities are removed allowing our pristine natural state of being to shine forth.
Consciousness and energy travel through the channels of the spine to awaken the chakras and reveal their hidden gifts. The spine becomes is like an antenna that we use to tune into the gross and subtle realms that coexist and intermingle around.