Many people have a misconception that yoga is only physical exercise. Whereas, it is a complete philosophy that can help us with self-awakening, self-awareness, spiritual awareness, deepening our conscience, and complete healing of body, mind, and breath. Some of the best online yoga classes are spreading the knowledge of this ancient Indian philosophy to the whole world. In this article we will discuss the Heart Chakra.
The Heart Chakra in yoga is the fourth of chakra. It is known to be the ‘door to our inner temple’. After the Root, Sacral and Solar Plexus Chakra comes the Heart Chakra which is located at the center of the chest at the height of the thymus gland, behind the sternum. Known as Anahata in Sanskrit, it means infinite, unhurt or boundless. It is also the bridge between the lower (Root, Sacral and Solar Plexus) and upper chakras (Throat, Third Eye and Crown Chakra).
What is the Heart Chakra in Yoga Associated with?
The Heart Chakra, when open, activated and balanced allows us to invite love, empathy, compassion and positivity into our lives. It represents unconditional love, compassion and joy. It is associated with the heart, lungs, thymus and circulatory system. When energy is free-flowing, there is a feeling of infinite space. The door to our inner soul is open, leading to infinite possibilities through that part of ourselves. It is that place where we can transcend ourselves and the world. The Beej Mantra for the Heart Chakra is YAM. If the Heart Chakra is blocked, one may find it hard to foster healthy relationships.
Did you know the Kundalini is a powerful dormant energy that lies coiled up in the shape of a serpent at the base of the spine? The Kundalini energy makes its way upwards through the chakras leading to an incredible spiritual awakening. Read more about it here- The Incredible Kundalini Energy
What are the characteristics of the Heart Chakra?
The Air Element
Associated with the air element, the Heart Chakra is all about space. When activated, energy is free flowing allowing us to discover the infinite within. We feel empowered to move beyond boundaries and limitations that may be physical, mental, emotional or spiritual. There are many yoga postures that work on opening up the heart, letting go of tightness and stagnation and inviting this positive energy. The air element also disperses and integrates the spiritual understanding of love, compassion and connection to everything one encounters.
The Colour Green
The Anahata Chakra is represented through the color green, which signifies transformation and love energy. This reflects the vibrations of the chakras and encourages their unique qualities - in this case, love, compassion and joy.
The symbol of a lotus with twelve petals is represented by the Heart Chakra. This represents the beauty and love around us, connecting us to our loved ones and the natural world.
How to balance the Heart Chakra?
When blocked or imbalanced, one tends to experience feelings of loneliness, separation and disconnection. You might feel like you don’t fit in or are unloved. You might develop the sense of unworthiness of love. This could manifest into cold-heartedness towards yourself and others too. Feelings of resentment, hurtfulness and heaviness also tend to occur. You will find it hard to forgive and let go. Physically, one may have problems with high or low blood pressure, immune system issues and physical problems related to the heart. There may be infections in the lungs or Bronchities too.
Aligning and balancing the Heart Chakra allows you to love yourself, foster feelings of kindness and compassion towards yourself and others and have a sense of ‘we’, instead of ‘I’. You will feel a general sense of belonging and trust in your heart. You will feel blessed with abundance and love.
Yoga postures to balance the Heart Chakra
Practicing yoga postures that target the heart region will effectively open up, balance, stimulate and activate the heart center. Backbends and heart-openers are the best yoga postures for the Heart Chakra. This includes the Camel Pose, Cobra Pose, Bridge Pose, Upward Facing Dog, and Fish Pose, among others. The best way to constantly keep the Anahata Chakra balanced is to attend live yoga classes with certified teachers who will include heart-openers in their sequence regularly.
Meditation for the Anahata Chakra
Meditating is one of the best ways to keep the Heart Chakra open and balanced. You can meditate on the Beej Mantra, YAM, or practice focus meditation on a green lotus with twelve petals. Other wonderful meditations for the Anahata Chakra are the Loving-Kindness Meditation, Visualization meditation and Body-scan meditation. Many live yoga studios, like Shvasa, regularly conduct meditation sessions.
Develop the habit of expressing gratitude and giving thanks regularly. This could be via journaling everyday, saying a prayer or simply remembering the positive aspects of your life that you are thankful for. When you express gratitude, you welcome new, positive energy into your life.
Other tips to balance the Heart Chakra
Apart from this, other simple tips include heart-opening, positive affirmations, drinking beverages like rose tea and cacao, getting some morning sunlight, taking a walk outdoors, using essential oils and rose quartz, as well as other heart-opening crystals.
Keeping your prana or life force flowing freely by doing practices that keep your chakras balanced is essential to maintaining vitality and good health. It is critical for mental and physical well-being. When the Anahata Chakra is stimulated, you will automatically feel warm, compassionate and happy. Join the best online yoga classes to balance and activate the Chakras for better health and well-being.