Welcome to your chakras, illuminating discs of swirling energy in your subtle body. In this series, the chakras become symbols, gateways to a deeper understanding of the self. Let their archetypes speak to you, teach you, whisper their secrets into you so that you may discover more ease, healing, and insight on this path.
We begin at the beginning, at the root of the root: The Muladhara Chakra.
People often view roots as something that hold us back, keep us tethered to one spot – like the proverbial ball and chain. The very opposite of feeling free. But, in fact, the true spirit of roots are to support our greatest growth and greatest possible expansion. From Jung: “No tree, it is said, can grow to heaven unless its roots reach down to hell.” The lesson of this chakra is that we must be of the earth. This is our first connection, and the relationship that will inform everything above it.
ROOT CHAKRA MEDITATION
You are earth. You are the mountain. Be unmovable, unshakeable. Take care of yourself. Your health, your body. Your space, however tiny it is, and wherever you find yourself.
Grounding yourself is the first step in finding yourself.
Sit on the edge of a cushion, pillow or blanket, all the better if you can do so outside. Place your palms down onto your thighs. Close your eyes. In your seat, lean back ever so slightly until you feel the most of you is connected to what you are sitting on. Breathe into that connection.
Imagine a ball of swirling red light (deep and vibrant) at the base of your spine. In this ball is everything you believe about safety, stability, support, and your right to stand at the edge of the mountain and shout to the silver of the moon, “I am here!” Ask yourself this question: Do you feel you have a right to be here? And let the answers rise…
Stand tall in Tadasana, or Mountain Pose for a short bit. Feel your feet on the ground. Sit down, and massage the bottoms of your feet for thirty seconds each. Stand back up into Tadasana. Feel the sensitivity of your feet and the way they ground down. Imagine that you are standing in rich soil that will nourish and support your growth.
Ask yourself this: How do you treat your body? How do you relate to it? How do you feel in it?
And let the answers rise…
Ask yourself: Do you feel safe in your life? Do you have all the things you need?
Marinate on these questions over a cup of warm, earthy tea with cinnamon and dandelion root. Burn woodsy incense, such as cedar. Use essential oils of vetiver, sandalwood, clove or juniper. Cook soup with what’s in season.
Ask yourself this: Do you trust? And let the answers rise…
Each morning, as you wake, spend one minute in bed expressing gratitude to yourself for the things that you have. Then, as your feet slide out from under the covers and touch the ground, remember where everything comes from.
Andrea—affectionately called “Anj”—is a Yoga Teacher based in San Francisco and Berkeley, where her OMs resonate down the block and around the corner. She is known for a bhakti-filled class with a whole lotta soul and a fierce flow. Andrea also writes, and edits. And travels, a lot. She takes her teaching on the road with yoga retreats around the warm world.