Yoga Chakra Chart
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“Truth is like a great mirror shattered by time into hundred thousand pieces”, which enables all who possess a small fragment to declare, “My Religion-Truth – is the true one”
(Sufi Gibrail Kham)
From the Indus Valley where one of the greatest civilizations of pre-history was already developing in the 4th Millenium B.C., there comes to us across the barriers of time the philosophical and religious teaching of Yoga, which condenses and exalts the highest spiritual aspirations of Humanity of all times and every land. Yoga, as we know it today, is probably very different from the original Yoga of the Indus Valley, having been codified and subsequently modified over the millennia. The first known codification is to be BHAGAVAD GITA (c.400 B.C.). Then, in 150 A.D., the ” FIVE WAYS of YOGA” was codified.
YOGA derives from the Sanskrit YUK= meaning “unite” or “bind”, linguistically related to the Latin “Iungere or Iugum” (yoke). Yoga ” binds and “unites” the psychic powers and faculties, balancing and reinforcing them and increasing their power.
The Five Paths, or Ways, relate to the principal aspects whereby man externalizes his inner nature (the Self). The conquest and aim of Yoga is the obtaining of a total vision of the Self and, this being similar to the All (Microcosm=Macrocosm), to arrive at the total vision of the Infinite.
The Five Paths (or Ways) are:
- HATA YOGA
- RAJA YOGA
- KARMA YOGA
- JNANA YOGA
- BHAKTI YOGA
All five Paths towards knowledge of the Divine Essence in Man, which can enable him to overcome all sub-divisions. The Five Paths themselves and all “divided” (or apparently divided) things in the universe are one thing.
When the One Energy which forms and acts in the All is understood, the Universe and all Universes converge in one. “Point” (BINDHU) where the very Essence of the all is concentrated. The “Point” becomes zero and is center in the Infinite (that which lies outside the center is finite). In Man, the Soul is the Infinite, while the body and all that surrounds it are finite.
In RAJA-YOGA the ASANAS (positions) serve to eliminate psychic disturbances of the Physical Body, creating a psycho-physical balance that combats the mind’s inconstancy.
ASANA: There are 84 hundred thousand Asanas “described” by Shiva. There are as many asanas as there are living beings in the Universe. Their importance depends on their influence on the endocrine glands and the “Prana and Apana” currents. While the Apana restrains the Prana in its upward impulse, the Prana restrains the Apana in its downward fall. The Apana is the assimilating energy which passes along the PINGALA (@ Sun) channel (Nadi) and emerges at the right nostril. The Prana is the energy that flows along the IDA (lunar) channel (Nadi) and emerges at the left nostril. The oscillations of the two energy forces create instability and restlessness. Some Yoga exercises serve to make the contents of the two lateral channels converge in the central one (SUSUMNA), thereby uniting the two energies, APANA and PRANA.
SADHANA (preparatory bases)
1. YAMA (moral observation)
2. NIYAMA (rules of conduct)
3. ASANA (the positions)
4. PRANAYAMA (breathing exercises
5. PRATYAHARA (restraining external temptations)
SAMYAMA – (Yoga Proper)
6. DHARANA (concentration)
7. DHYANA ( meditation)
8. SAMADHI ( union with God)
- BAHIRANGA SADHANA = Beginning of spiritual research and ascesis. (Bahiranga = Exterior, that which belongs to the circle of exteriority). [1-3]
- ANTARANGA SADHANA = Interior research of the spirit (Antaranga = Interior, that which belongs to the circle of interiority) [4-8]
SADHANA = Discipline, Ascesis.
AHIMSA A = no Himsa = violence) = Do not Harm. Violence arises from Fear, Ignorance, and Selfishness. Only by freeing oneself from these ills, restraining them voluntarily by practicing Ahimsa, can one attain ABHAYA (freedom from Fear) and AKRODHA (freedom from Wrath).
HATA-YOGA Ha=Sun, THA=Moon, a union of the two breaths, the right Solar, positive and the left, Lunar, negative. Hata also means health.
To attain SAMADHI (the state of ecstasy) through the ASANAS (positions) and the PRANAYAMA (rhythmic control of the breathing) and with the MUDRA (methods of enclosing the breathing into the body).
KARMA-YOGA (Karma = every action has its
KARMAN, which will be a prize or a punishment in the chain of existence (SAMSARA), YOGA of action, deeds and work. Carrying out one’s duty with no expectation of reward. Part of RAJA YOGA.
SAHASRARA CHAKRA – ( or BRAHMA CHAKRO)
Fluid Centre where the three ” Force (Nadi Ida, Nadi Pingala, and the Central Channel Susumna) converge. Located on the crown of the head. Lotus of a Thousand Petals, corresponding to all human potential. At the center of the Lotus is its Mandala (magic symbol), composed of a Moon with a triangle inside with the point facing downwards (representing the Joni, or female organ), which contains the ” Parabindu = the highest point, of the greatest and purest transcendence, where the human Microcosm is united with the Macrocosm of the Divine Universe.
The union of SHIVA (awareness) with its Shakti (manifestation of Powers).
The carrying out of difficult practical research (SADHANA).
AJNA-CHAKRA (Ajna = Command, Centre of Command)
Situated between the eyebrows, in the place of the Eye of Shiva, the Vajra (diamond, thunderbolt and scepter) which gives the transcendent vision. White, like the Moon, resplendent in the glory of Dhyana (Meditation). Two-petalled flower, with the letters Ha and Ksha. In it dwells the goddess Hakini of the six faces and six arms. Its Mandala (magic symbol) is an upside-down triangle, symbolizing the womb (Joni) of the goddess, with the Linga inside (symbol of virility) of the Interior Spirit (Antarama).
Location of the highest manifestation of Shiva, the Bavagan Pava Mashiva = House of Shiva. It’s Shakti (energy) is the very powerful Maya, where the Tattva (principles) of Fire, Sun and Moon converge. Its Mantra (sacred syllable) is the Seed of the Veda, the AUM or OM (Seed of creation, the Sanscrit meaning ALL, similar to the Latin OMNE or the Hebrew AMEN).
Situated at the roof of the palate, in front of the uvula. Red, involved in the organization of the feelings and emotions, both egoistic and altruistic: pride, fondness, pain, regret, reverence, and respect. 16-petalled Lotus.
Situated at the level of the throat, the nerve plexus of the pharynx region, location of the inhalation of breath. White, relates to the power which produces language and stimulates the hearing with the mouth and the cutaneous system. 16-petalled lotus with the letters: A,I,U,Ri,E, etc…Its Mandala (magic symbol) is a circle within a point-down triangle and in it is the god “Sadashiva” represented as Androgynous (half male, half female), half Gold and half Silver (Sun and Moon), accompanied by his Shakti (energy) called Shakini. The mantra (Sacred Syllable) is Ham.
Situated on the cardiac plexus in the region of the heart, Vermillion red, enables the yogi to listen to the palpitation of Life (SHABDA BRAHMAN). 12-petalled Lotus with the letters; Ka, Kha, Ga, Gha, Na, Ca, Cha, Ja, Jha, Jna, Ta, Tha.
Its Mandala (magic symbol) is the “Hexagram” (Salomon’s Seal) where the god Isha (the Lord) resides with his Shakti (force-energy) Kakini.
In the lowest triangle of the hexagram is the Shiva-Linga, symbolizing spiritual virility. The Mantra (Sacred Symbol) is Yam.
Yoghin who made quiet his mind possesses the supreme bliss, rids himself of the sin and makes serene his mind. (6.28)
(Manas=Soul, Spirit, Mind with the power of decision, (recalling the Latin MENS); on it the control of the senses depends)
Situated between the umbilicus and the heart. 6-petalled Lotus, each petal dedicated to a sensation, Hearing, Touch, Sight, Taste, and Smell, plus dreams and hallucinations. Representations of dreams, in fact, reach this Chakra.
SURYA-CHAKRA (the Sun)
Situated between the umbilicus and the heart, similar and complementary to the Manas Chakra, not one of the principal Chakras. The five lower Chakras (excluding the Manas and Surya) from the Muladhara to the Vishuddha correspond to the Bhuta, the five forms of sensitive matter: Muladhara = Earth, Svadhishthana=Water, Manipura=Fire, Anhata=Air, etc…
MANIPURA CHAKRA (Brilliant as a gem)=Mani
The fluid-energy center situated at the level of the umbilicus corresponding to the gastric plexus. Its nature (Tattva) relates to the forces stimulating the sense of form and color. 10-petalled Lotus with the letters Dam, Dham, Nam, Tam, Tham, Dam, Dham, Nham, Pam, Pham.
Its Mandala (magic symbol) is a triangle with the point downwards, where one of the forms of Shiva resides, the god Rudra with his Shakti (force-energy) the carnivorous goddess Lakini, her breasts red with the blood dripping from her mouth.
Its Mantra (Sacred syllable, a seed of Fire) is RAM (Bija).
Second fluid center of the organism
Situated between the base of the pubis between the genitals and the sacral nerve plexus.
Its nature (Tattva) relates to Water, with the sense of taste and the “Prana” as meaning breath. 6-petalled Lotus, with the letters; Ba, Bha, Ma, Ya, Pa, La.
Its Mandala (magic symbol) is half-moon, and Vishnu is the presiding deity, accompanied by is Shakti (energy-force) called Rakini.
Its Mantra (sacred syllable) is VAM.
(Mula=Root, adhara=Support, Central support of the root, where the Sushumna, the central axis has its point of departure, running parallel to the spinal column (Brahmadanda). In it is found the divine energy latent in Man. The point where the two NADI meet (Nadi Pingala and Nadi Ida).
Situated between the genitals and the anus. Its color is crimson, and its nature (Tattva) is the Earth, with the quality of cohesion and the sense of smell.
4-petalled Lotus with the letter Vam, Sham, Cam, Sam.
Its Mandala (magic symbol) is a square with a point-down triangle at the center, the symbol of the Yoni (female organ) containing the Linga (male organ) around which is curled (three and a half times) the snake goddess Devi Kundalini, ready to move up the Susumna
The god residing in this Chakra is Brahma, and his Shakti (energy-force) is called DAKINI.
Its Mantra (sacred symbol) is LAM, who rides the elephant Airavata, symbolizing solidity, strength and firmness.
Remember that brownish-red gives power.
Black (krishda) yields fame.
Influence of (colored) stones called Shalagrama.
Neglecting all his material desires, Yogi must be able to control all his senses. (6.25)
Jainist diagram of the division of the “One Cosmos”, with at the center the Hearth and the mythical Mount Meru, surrounded by seas and rivers (15th century)
“They who are steady in eating and in rest, and in their work, do their duty; they who, is steady in sleeping and waking, they will be able, Training Yoga, to mitigate sufferings of their material lives……………Bhagavadgita 6-18
NITAMBASANA Side flexing
ARDHA CHAKRASANA Thorax expansion
UDDIYANA Abdominal contraction
NATARAJASANA Balance “Asana”
SUPTA-VAJRASANA Back arching
PASCHIMOTTANASANA Back stretching
PRANAYAMA Complete respiration
SAVASANA Relaxation Agana
SABVANGASANA Position on Shoulders
URVASANA “Of Danger”
ARDAHA MATSYENDRASANA Complete Torsion
PADAHASTASANA Legs bold
SIRSHASANA “Modified” Asana on the head
VAJRASANA Back arching
BHRADRASANA Knees and thighs extension
JANUSIRASANA Alternate traction on Legs.