Chakra. It’s a word you’ve probably heard in yoga class—and the checkout line at Whole Foods—but do you really know what it means? If the answer is no, you’re not alone. We reached out to medical aesthetician and spiritual healer Mashell Tabe to give us a full rundown on chakras—including what they are, why they matter and how each chakra can manifest in your life.
Read on for chakra 101.
What Are Chakras?
“In a broad sense, chakras are energy systems, which manage every aspect of your being. There are three major functions they control: physical, psychological and spiritual,” Tabe says.
“From a physical aspect, all your chakras manage a certain part of the body, and they are connected to your endocrine glands. From a psychological aspect, they manage how we develop our beliefs and feelings. From a spiritual aspect, they help us to manage and understand our physic abilities, as well as play a role in connecting us to higher spiritual understandings.”
“The beauty is we are all comprised of this; every piece and particle of each and every one of us has this amazing mini universe within us [that’s] ready to shape and mold our reality based from a place of clear intent.”
Why Do They Matter?
“The world you actively exist in is created by your thoughts and your beliefs around these thoughts. Chakras transform energy, giving you the ability to manifest your thoughts, beliefs and desires (subtle, psychic energy) into physical existence (sensory energy),” Tabe explains.
“What’s also important to know is that within your chakras exist all your memories. These memories and experiences govern how you feel about yourself and interact with the world around you. Your chakras have the knowing of your soul’s journey recorded within its memory bank. They can open you up to the deeper understanding of your brilliance. For this very reason, I explain to all of my clients, when you take the time to study and understand this vital part of who you are, you’re able to better shape your future.”
First, it’s important to note that “all chakras play an equally important role in helping us to manage certain aspects of our existence,” Tabe says. Each Chakra may also become imbalanced at different parts of your life. “Having an imbalance within a certain Chakra means that you have shifted out of alignment with Divine Love. Be gentle with yourself in understanding that we all do this; this is a part of soul growth,” Tabe says.
If you’re curious what each chakra is associated with—when balanced and imbalanced—here’s Tabe’s take:
Associated With: Your most direct connection to Divine Oneness/All That Is.
Balanced: You commune with Divine Oneness and receive an understanding of who you are and the mystery of the universe.
Imbalanced: Depression or a loss of faith.
2. Third Eye
Associated With: Allowing you to see both inside yourself and beyond yourself.
Balanced: Awareness and truthful vision, which comes from universal knowing.
Imbalanced: Headaches, migraines, nightmares or eye problems.
3. Throat Chakra
Associated With: Your power of self-expression and creativity.
Balanced: You express and share your truth and inspiration.
Imbalanced: A sore throat, nervousness, irritated sinuses, thyroid problems, teeth and gum problems, TMJ, jaw pain.
4. Heart Chakra
Associated With: The seat of your beautiful Soul.
Balanced: You bring forth your spirits essence into existence. Love is all we are. It’s in our inherent nature. Love holds the source of divine wisdom.
Imbalanced: We lose sight of beauty, empathy, love and compassion for others and ourselves.
5. Solar Plexus
Associated With: Holding your will and your power to create in this world.
Balanced: You have inner strength, strong instincts and gut feelings.
Imbalanced: Poor memory and concentration or stress.
6. Sacral Chakra
Associated With: The seat of all your creativity, feelings, sexuality and sensuality.
Balanced: The ultimate union of body, soul and the Divine occurs.
Imbalanced: Eating disorders, low self-esteem, addictions, no sex drive and dependency issues.
7. Root Chakra
Associated With: Security, safety, health and vitality of your physical body.
Balanced: You feel safe and function in this world.
Imbalanced: Feeling abandoned, depressed, anxious and addictions.
Find an imbalance that resonated with you on the list above? It’s okay. Our balance is ever-flowing and changing. “The key to healing is being self-aware. It is your attention to every intention you set forth in the universe, which will lead to understanding what in you, needs healing,” Tabe says.
If you’re still stuck, “my advice to the novice is to seek help in an empowered way, and by that, I mean, allow the healer to guide you into a place of self-awareness so that you can evolve into healing yourself. Remember each of us has this capability; it’s just a matter of reawakening it,” Tabe says.
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