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Chakras and Your Breath

{written by : Charles B. Crenshaw, Jr.}

Article word count : 829 -- Article Id : 2816
Article active date : 2010-05-12 -- Article views : 7989


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Article is about :
A brief glimpse of swara yoga, the science of breath and how chakras are related to it.

Reincarnation The Neverending Journey
In Reincarnation The Neverending Journey an attempt is made to explore the conundrum of our existence. An existence that spans yesterday, today and even tomorrow. Questions surrounding the existence of the soul and our connections to the physical world, the fundamental mechanisms and the processes by which reincarnation operates through time, are carefully examined. Plausible revelations on memories and karma and their intrinsic connections to our lives today and tomorrow are explored. It is a Neverending Journey.. Your Neverending Journey....

by Pieter Heydenrych




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When it comes to chakras, their subtlety makes them somewhat obscure, somewhat like unbelievable nonsense for most of us. There are those who assure us that they can, with the help of a pendulum, tell you which direction your chakra’s are spinning. Then there are those with more refined sensitivities like clairvoyants, who say that they can literally see the chakras. But what about those of us without such skills, is there anything that we can make out about these mysterious chakras? What if our awareness is not as subtle, what do we do? There is an ancient text that spells out things related to the chakras that even we normal people might grasp. The secret to all this is the breath. The Siva Swarodaya explains that there is no greater secret known to man than the science of breath because it is hidden in plain sight, literally right under our nose.

Have you ever thought about how the breath exits your nostrils? Have you ever thought about how the yogis came up with those basic symbols for the chakras? The ancients seemed to have had plenty of time to make these extraordinary observations. Without any great technology, armed simply with the power of awareness, the yogis discerned the connections between the chakras and the breath. Of course, this only makes sense if you have an understanding of the chakras, or a belief in the chakras.

From a symbolic perspective, the chakras are commonly related to basic geometric shapes, and all the lower chakras, specifically, are associated with major nerve plexus, as we know now. Whether we believe in chakras or not we have to concede that the psychology related to these nerve plexus is part of our human experience. For example, the sacral plexus is related to issues of security and stability. The prostatic plexus is associated with issues of sensuality. The solar / epigastric plexus is related to power in the world whether it be through aggression or being assertive to acquiring basic needs. The cardiac plexus, heart chakra is loving kindness; and the pharyngeal plexus, throat chakra is associated with higher creativity and receptivity. These are quick generalities, but we all have to agree that we all deal with similar issues in life. The yogis assure that these psychological issues are related to the associated nerve plexus.

In the beginning, when the yogis viewed their breath on surfaces like water or other shiny reflective surfaces like mirrors, they noticed patterns. These patterns were consistent and amazingly regular. So much so that time could be kept by their regularity, in a sense. They noticed that there were four or five patterns or indications that the breath made as it exited the nostrils.

What may not be so obvious to us is that the shapes were made because the nature of the tissue lining the nasal passages kept changing. Sigmund Freud knew a bit about the tissue lining the nasal passages and related this knowledge to different patient complaints. Some of his cocaine research was associated to these observations. But, how does this relate to our understanding of the chakras?
The yogis observations were the origins of the symbols that are presently associated with the chakras, symbols we take for granted. For the rational person the choice of symbols for these chakras seems to have been indiscriminant, a bunch of mystical hoo-ha, but the yogis understood the message the breath laid before them.

When the breath exiting the nostril was reminiscent of a square, or a crescent moon, or a triangle, or a had circular form, or was a cluster of nondescript dots or bubbles on a surface; it was saying something about what nerve plexus, what chakra, our less than conscious attention was coursing through at the time. If we glance through the more traditional texts on chakras or Kundalini yoga we find that the basic symbols for the different chakras are quite similar to the shapes the yogis noticed in their breath. For instance, the earth element, the root chakra has as its predominant symbol a square or quadrangle. The water element, the second chakra, has a crescent moon shape or semi-circular shape. The solar plexus had a shape reminiscent of a triangle, the heart had one reminiscent of a circle, and the throat had one that was not any detectable shape.

In the final analysis, each chakra has a shape that can be detected from the breath. If we really want to see which chakra is active at any given moment, all we need do is check the breath. These shapes are made, and can be most easily detected by the breaths direction leaving the dominant nostril. Knowing this, we need not even deal with surfaces like water or mirrors. This is something that is fairly easy to learn for the interested aspiring yogin, but alas it is all Greek to those not interested. Your chakras and your breath such a fascinating and mysterious connection.

Author Bio :
Charles B. Crenshaw, Jr., M.S., M.Div.W Co-founder and Co-director of Inner Peace Yoga Center, a non-profit educational organization. Leading meditation workshops, yoga seminars, a meditation teacher, yoga therapist, and spiritual counselor, trained in the Himalayan tradition of Sri Swami Rama and electically. An ordained interfaith minister, and consulting hypnotist; founder of Spirit House, an spiritual interfaith fellowship dedicated to understanding the mystical connections of the worlds religious traditions through the direct experience provided by meditation and similar practices. http://www.ipyc.org

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