Last year I chose a general focus which was to be for the year ahead. It was “connection”. It was an inspiration I had, and I put it down in that deliberately vague word, because the inspiration itself seemed to be open to interpretation in many different ways. This year, the focus is to be “rootedness”. Again, it’s vague, as the inspiration seemed to be more of an energy feeling than a concept that can be pinpointed exactly in words. In general terms, we can say that this year I’m going to be developing my root chakra and all the things related to that energy centre.
First, about chakras. The concept of chakras is considered a New Age term though it featured in Hindu and Buddhist spirituality for thousands of years. Chakras are energy centres are found on our energetic (non physical) body. Each has a colour and, corresponding to the lower and higher wavelengths of colour, the chakras have lower or higher vibrations. They’re numbered from one to seven according to their vibrations; the root chakra is the first chakra.
If you prefer this to “higher or lower vibrations”, we can say they have “less or more subtle vibrations”. None is better than the other, though some are closer to the material world and some are closer to the spiritual.
Some people say they can see chakras. I can, sometimes, when I look for them, although the sixth sense can often get confused with the imagination, so I can’t say I’m certain that they exist just because I’ve looked for them and found something. I’m pretty sure they exist, though, just because I resonate with the sources that talk about them, and because it feels right to believe in them. I agree, by the way, that that is not hard evidence; but spirituality *is*, indeed, subjective. That makes it a trickier field than science, though not a less valid one.
I could write a more in depth post about chakras sometime; in the meantime, if you’re interested, you can check Erin Pavlina’s post on chakras, which is a good one and which is the first thing I ever read about the concept.
The root chakra
Let’s talk about the root chakra in this post, and why I’m focusing on it this year.
As I said the chakras range in colour from low to high wavelength, and in “subtlety” from entirely material to entirely spiritual. The root chakra is red and involves physicality, the second is orange and involves creativity, the third is yellow and involves freedom, the fourth is green and involves love, the fifth is blue and involves communication, the sixth is purple (some say indigo) and involves perception, including the sixth sense; and the seventh is white (some say violet) and involves spirituality. Sexuality, by the way, is dealt with in different aspects by both the first and second chakra.
This is a very simple summary. You should understand that each chakra is about energy most of all, and that’s not something that can be encapsulated entirely in words. So the words, rather than defining the energies, try to give you a pointer to the sensations we’re dealing with.
The root chakra, then, is red, and deals with physicality and to some extent, sexuality. (I personally have the idea that the second chakra is more the sexual chakra, and that the root chakra only deals with sexuality insofar as it is a part of physicality as a whole). The root chakra also deals with, unsurprisingly, “rootedness”. When I was looking for my inspiration for my focus for this year, that is what I saw: roots, coming out of my feet, into the Earth.
Some say the root chakra is about survival. I suppose it is, though when trying to connect with the energy of the first chakra the word “survival” has never done much for me. I think this is because survival is a negative, that is, it’s only about what it is not: not dying. And I don’t think any chakra deals with “not dying”. Life just doesn’t understand negatives. You can’t manifest a lack of something, you can’t have a lack of a belief, and you can’t create anything by focusing on what you don’t want exclusively.
So I’ve found that the world “stability” or “balance” makes more sense to me than “survival”. Death is just change, after all, and stability is the opposite of a tendency to wild changes. Things like money, which are often connected with survival, are usually not directly the difference between life and death. However, for me they have very often been the difference between stability and chaos in my life.
“Rootedness” links into what we’re talking about here. If death is flying off away from the Earth, rootedness means that you stay firmly rooted into the ground. In matters which are usually considered about survival, rootedness means that you keep your foundation and don’t get batted about by the winds of fortune, whether or not your actual life is in the balance.
For me this all has a lot to do with emotional balance, too. When I have a strong emotional disturbance, I know my energy has a tendency to go to my higher chakras and I lose all sense of balance in my life. I tend to stop being productive and lose my momentum in whatever project I have going on at that moment. A connection with the Earth via the root chakra can literally “earth” your energies, let them flow down out of you, and allows you to keep your balance.
I’ve seen myself grow in balance and rootedness bit by bit in the last few years, but it has been such a long journey. I was, at one time, so terribly hurt in the root chakra that I was totally unable to live independently, totally disconnected from reality, and emotionally an absolute wreck. I think in one year I moved house about 12 times. I’ve only started earning an independent living fairly recently, before which I was either partially or fully dependent on my parents or living in crazy conditions, or both.
Gaining strength in my root chakra has meant learning to appreciate and take care of my home, learning to be productive, learning to deal with money and get enough of it, learning to appreciate physical goods and services (for what they are, and not more than that, though being excessively materialistic was never my problem), gaining emotional stability, learning to be practical and getting a grip on reality, and just generally learning to care for myself and my body.
I think the root chakra is a very important and often overlooked chakra (due to the New Age tendency to underappreciate the material world and overappreciate the spiritual world). However, simply through becoming conscious of the school of hard knocks I was being put through, I’ve come to greatly value what it can do for me and the things it represents. I suspect as I grow to integrate it more, I’ll come to appreciate those things even more, while integrating those things in a holistic matrix of Earth and Heaven, physical and spiritual, and forgetting any concept of conflict between those two poles. In short, good news.
Happy new year guys What were your resolutions or goals for 2012?