Like many people, the chakra system was one of my first introductions to the subtle world. It was revelatory, but more than that, it was instinctive. It provided a framework and language for a lot of things I had learned in my life. In my years practicing, I have come to disagree with some popular authors, and even the chakra test I had on my website - I do not believe in overactivity and underactivity. And to use that language cultivates a bypassing mentality as there is a tendency to treat the symptom and not the cause. A true shadow alchemist will recognize that it is always an imbalance - either within a single chakra, or the system as a whole.
Here is a brief overview of the 7 main chakras:
You can download those HERE.
While I think it's awesome that healing + spirituality has become more mainstream, it is a double edged sword. It means more "teachers" are out to make a buck and perpetuate misinformation - both harmless and harmful. It also means that seekers may miss the bigger picture and spend a lot of time buying tools that will "fix" them as opposed to understanding what really needs to happen.
With the chakra system specifically, there is a lot of band-aiding. What I lovingly refer to as "slap a crystal on it." As someone who used to create jewelry based on someone's unique chakra imbalances, I understand all sides to this.
Crystals are powerful.
But if you have a root wound, it won't do much if you aren't actively working on healing.
When I was making jewelry based on chakra test results, I would receive a lot of questions from people asking me "what crystal do you recommend for <insert issue>?" This was always a hard question for me to answer, and included two parts: some stones, but also the larger work that needed to happen. I recognize not many people want to do that larger work, but for those that do, we must stop looking at things like the chakra system in a linear fashion. By linear, I mean, working from root to crown and viewing each chakra exclusive of the others. An imbalance in one chakra, will impact others, but it is not a matter of excess or deficiency.
Many resources will tell someone who overeats and is sluggish that they have a root chakra excess.
I do not view it as excess, because when you acknowledge that their behavior is making up for a lack of feeling secure and stable, you realize that it's not that their is too much energy in the root chakra. It just means there is an imbalance.
Someone who overeats and is sluggish typically has wounds or fears around security and stability, most often from early childhood. A situation I often see is when someone loses their job they gain weight. This is because when our survival feels threatened, a common instinct is to try to ground ourselves more to the physical reality. Sometimes that's eating, sometimes that is accumulating more physical possessions.
Another example I see pretty often is a spiritual person who has an imbalanced 3rd eye chakra. These people typically find being in their body and the real world uncomfortable, preferring to hang out in the upper chakras. Their 3rd eye will be open, but it won't be balanced - they do not use both their intuition and rational thinking. Getting super caught up in all things metaphysical and not being rooted in the physical reality is a problem, because the physical reality is where we live and where the work needs to be done. This imbalance can lead to anxiety, paranoia and mood issues.
So how do we use the chakra system to explore our shadow? It is once again, using our symptoms as an invitation. When we sense something is up with one or more of our chakras, we explore the beliefs that are living there:
Let's say you've had a sore throat for a couple weeks. And maybe before that, you had been feeling like you were stumbling over your words. You realize it is a throat chakra situation. Rather than immediately wondering "what will fix this?" we go back to when the symptoms began.
Reflect on what was happening in your life when you first felt like you were stumbling over your words. Had anything happened with a family member or friend? Any situation happening at work? Anything out of the ordinary internally? See if you can find a trigger.
From there, you can use the dialogue we learned in Segment 3.
We also want to examine how the imbalance in one chakra is impacting the others. When the throat chakra feels impinged, we may notice some shifts elsewhere. For example, the throat chakra and sacral chakra have a very strong connection - when we are unable to communicate, we may feel very emotional and "full" in the sacral. Or we may feel stuck! We all have our unique expressions of imbalance.
Before I began my personal work, I had a hard time dealing with my feelings. I repressed them and was not able to express them honestly and transparently. This was a repression in my sacral as well as my throat. But part of how this manifested for me was gossiping. Because I was blocked in the feelings department, that energy was being transferred into the less authentic + superficial as a way of achieving some form of balance.
While there are many commonalities in how things are manifested within our chakra system, I invite you to explore your own system and how yours is uniquely expressed. One of the ways I prefer to explore it is through a journey, most often I go to 1 or 2 chakras, but below I have included recorded chakra journeys for the upper chakras and the lower chakras. After you do it a couple times, you should be able to do it on your own in case you want to go to one specific place. I will also soon have recorded journey that will be single-chakra journeys. Make sure you're signed up to my email list!