First (Root) Chakra
| Chapter 15 | Pages 188 & 189
The First Chakra is located at the base of the spine. One of its facets is the quality and functions of Earth. Here Earth means the final step of manifestation in the realm of the senses; the most public areas of life. It is also the most veiled to the spirit. It is the most deeply wrapped in the illusion of separateness, aloneness, and tangibility. The four petal Root Chakra is a symbolized imaginary lower energy vortex used to represent the functioning of the mind and emotions when we are most unconscious.
This is not bad. It is necessary. When we perform our best in any activity, a large part of that activity is automatic and unconscious. When you ride a bicycle well, you do not think of the pedals. The pedals are your focus only when you first learn to propel the bike and balance at the same time. Then the conscious action becomes an unconscious habit.
The First Chakra is the realm of habits. It is the land of automatic behavior. It is a repository of the deep instinctual patterns we use for our survival. Our potential for survival response is unconscious and he shared, regardless of intelligence, race, or age. The things stored and tapped in the First Chakra processes allow little individuality. The character of the First Chakra is to reduce everything to the bottom line.
The Root Chakra is associated with elimination, with the anus and large intestines. From the anus, the food you eat is returned to the Earth in a digested form. With little variation, everything you eat is universalized to its base components. At the upper regions of the body you care a lot about each smell, taste, color, texture, and sensation. By the time it comes to the Earth, it is reduced to what is common, universal, most tangible. The many subtle qualities are lost.
Chakras Are Imaginary Healing Tools
No chakra stands alone. They are all part of a larger cycle of evolution and devolution, manifestation and sublimination. The function of illumination and reduction is balanced by the upper areas that accumulate, create and differentiate.
The Root Chakra functions are very important in our modern times. We are surrounded by pollution from many chemical sources. There are thousands of chemical insults to the body that we cannot avoid. Our front-line defense is to reduce them, eliminate them, and return them to the Earth. Strong eliminative capacity is essential for survival.
Open Root Chakra Blockages Through Proper Elimination of Emotional & Energetic Fecal Matter
The function of elimination applies to physical, mental, and emotional realms. Thoughts that become obsessive, sadness that will not go, depression that is a lack of feeling, all need the strength of the Root Chakra. The ability to create and act on regular habit is partly an Earthly function. Planning may come from the Sixth Chakra, projection from the Fifth, and order from the Third, but the final actions that support and make it in hand will require the touch of the First. It is the drone, or the base-tone, that supports the variety in the melodies of life.
If you eliminate too fast, it is diarrhea. You can die quickly of typhus. You lose water, dehydrate, and get no nutrients. People stuck on a habit, who are extremely rigid, let no new ideas, feelings, or people into their life. They wither emotionally. Over-functioning of the First Chakra leads to many maladies. Or imagine the reverse. You cannot let go of anything. The toxins build up. You reach a state of self-poisoning, bitterness.
The First Chakra is associated with the sense of smell. When you hold all the toxins in you begin to reek. People keep their distance. When it functions well you radiate a sweet smell. The exact composition of that smell will vary according to the functioning of the overall frequency of your consciousness, due to the mix of glandular activity that accompanies the chakras involved. This is the basis of aromatherapy.
Smell is linked to survival. It can tell you not only about sickness, it can also let you know how different and how much the same someone is. It is found that many patterns of sexual bonding and the ability for monogamy is influenced strongly by the smell and by proper hormone releases during intercourse and other forms of stimulation. Those smells are often imitated in the aromatherapy used for romantic influence.
A Chakra is an Imaginary Visualization Tool
The Root Chakra has strength in its functions of elimination, of setting foundations and reducing complex things to common elements. In its best use, this gives purity, security, and universality. Problems arise when this is the focus of consciousness without connection and synchronization to the other chakras. Then its functions become exaggerated and lack of appropriate levels of attachment accelerate. This leads to insecurity. Each idea, dealing and substance is reduced to its most basic elements, so differences are lost. This loss of context can lead to compulsions and fixated behaviors. This loss of context and the mixing of all the tattvas in this chakra to make up earth can create clouded behavior that forms its own singular world. Traditional writings call this tamas–heavy and confused, or perverse behavior, disconnected from the natural expression of our identity.
Techniques that strengthen the key functions of this center and integrate its energy with the higher centers are used frequently in Kundalini yoga. Sat Kriya is one of the best examples of that. In non-householder traditions of the spirit, people would remove themselves from daily life to emphasize the energy of the higher centers and remove themselves from earthly influence. Kundalini yoga embraces the householder life and transforms the energy of each chakra so the practitioner becomes as a Lotus on the water–able to elevate his or her consciousness regardless of the environment.
Practice Perfect Form & Endurance On Your Yoga Mat
When the Root Chakra is functioning perfectly and is well integrated with the other chakras, it gives you certain abilities. You are secure, stable, steadfast, positively relentless, and loyal. You show great endurance under non-ideal situations. There is a sense of self–sufficiency that comes from the quelling of the negative mind: “I don’t need anything. I’m not under threat, I’m not without resources.” The checklist of imminent threat is empty. You can grasp and hold the world. You can easily accept doing something at a particular time and place. You easily receive material objects, money, gifts, etc. You feel you have a base and are not bothered by a sense of drifting emotional homelessness.
One of the periods in life that affects this the most is the very first 40 days of an infants journey on earth. When you were an infant, your body was totally connected to your mother. Your blood and hers mixed. The sound of her heart beat was the Cosmic drum to which you danced in a watery world full of feelings and warmth. To be ripped away from he – to physically lose touch–was greatly disorienting. In the tradition of Kundalini, the child is kept with the mother from the instant of birth for 40 days. Visits and extra stimulation are discouraged. The mother is often cared for–fed, massaged, served–buy a loving volunteer. The baby is kept in constant contact and is massaged at least twice a day by the mother. The sense of connectedness and emotional security that comes from this magic time cannot be replaced even by years of psychotherapy and meditation. It lets the infant have trust: “I am here, I am welcome, the Earth is OK, I can be here, I should be here. My needs are met. What I need is already here.
Many spiritual teachers say one of the most difficult things for the modern person to do is to first trust the Earth, then themselves, then the invisible. The great Guru Arjan says in his sacred poem Rehiras, “Why do we worry? When the flamingo flies away, God takes care of its young.” Our lack of this basic instinct of trust stops the flow of energy to the higher centers or chakras. It impedes our wholeness and our complete emotional development. We engage in many defenses against the uncomfortable feeling of rootlessness and insecurity. We become depressed. Cut off, and full of grief. We reject the world before it rejects us. We hold onto something, anything, in order to deny the insecurity and lack of personal center in the storm of life. It leads to fanaticism, torturing, perversion, and narrow-mindedness. With the First Chakra is strong, trust is automatic. We trust a person to be a person. Mastering the Earth element you know the Earth can be received. Water (Emotions) can be added to the dirt (old habits) and the new flexibility with a little heat (will, challenge and discipline) a new vessel can be made. A healthy First Chakra let’s change occur in steps.