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Chakras

chakra 3

 

There is a tremendous amount of material on Chakras and it is important to be exposed to as many as you can in order to form your own opinion. I have tried to cover the full spectrum but have only scraped the surface. In addition to this material I would also refer you to my website and the section on Chakras there as well…I just didn’t want to duplicate myself … here’s the link

Chakras

The Chakras: How the Rainbow Colors came to be…
Did you ever wonder how the colors of the chakras found their way into our present culture? I did.
As an energy worker and certified teacher of yoga, I have been taught by a variety of systems how to activate my chakras. I invested time in private training with those who specialized in chakra activation. I’d spent numerous hours in meditative focus trying to activate my chakras based on their associated color. The reason for this effort I was told is that once I balanced the chakra’s colors I would enjoy a healthier body and mind. I was promised spiritual enlightenment would occur through the chakra’s activation process. After I put in considerable time and effort, I was disappointed. So I decided, I needed to do my own research into chakras. This is when I began to dig into a more historical understanding of chakras. The first thing I found out was that ancient chakras were basically colorless.

Let me share with you what I found in a brief historical review of the chakras with relation to color, including the eastern verses western view on chakras colors and lastly the current rainbow theory of the chakra system. I’ll keep this article on task, since I found no one source can be solely the authoritative end all on the topic of chakras. Let’s begin with the origin of the chakra colors or the term chakra which is varied according to what authorities repetitively write about them. What I’ve learned is that there is no mention of “chakra colors” in the Upanishads. For those of us that know little about The Upanishads, they are a collection of texts http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Upanishads that supposedly has secret and sacred knowledge.

One authority states, “I’ve come across “The Hindu religious texts, the Upanishads, dating from around the 7th-8th century BCE, first mentioned the existence of this cosmic energy called prana, which was received by all living creatures upon the Earth; however it was not until sometime between the 2nd century BCE and the 2nd century AD that the first mention was made of “chakras”. http://users.adam.com.au/bstett/SkepticsChakras137.html.

Still another authority states, “the first known mention of chakras appeared in a number of early Upanishads around 7-800 BCE. Later Upanishads around 200 BCE – 200 CE, namely Shri Jabala Darshana Upanishad, Cudamini Upanishad, Yoga-Shikka Upanishad and Shandila Upanishad, made reference to tantric concepts such as chakras and mantras, and gave both locations and symbolism. In the 10th century, the Gorak­shash­ata­kam, written by Guru Goraknath, gave information on the powers of awakening and meditating on the chakras as sited in the article “A Brief History of the Chakras“.

Then there are authorities such as this author in Wikipedia that discuss the color orientation of the “Chakras” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chakra. However, upon closer examination I saw that the references to the “color” claims are in need of a “citation”. This means their statement is in need of references to reliable sources which the author has not provided as yet per Wikipedia. Other Chakra articles, such as http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Ray_Baskerville, points out “Despite everything you may have heard or read about chakras, there is no unified theory or explanation of exactly what the chakras are and what they do. Unfortunately, much of the information on chakras is simply a repeating of what has been said or written elsewhere and the basis of its authority is only from in their repetition. Very often components from different theories become mixed together adding to the confusion and misunderstanding”. I was beginning to see the repetitive way that chakra authorities state their position and meaning according to their unknown sources.
Here is one authority I believe sums the chakra current claims: “While all these references are suggestive and intriguing, they are ultimately only precursors to what we currently understand as the chakra system. Despite the extravagant claims made by some chakra enthusiasts, there is little evidence that the seven-chakra system as we know it today, is really any part of an unbroken tradition dating to antiquity.” http://chakras.egoplex.com/chapter1.html.”

We can understand based on this last author’s comments that the Chakra system has been transformed. The Chakras as the historical story tells had been ratified over time by the ancients who had interpreted the ancient Upanishads Vedic texts. This is even present in the chakras origin on the dual yogic and Tantric systems that founded and interpreted these subtle energy centers. If this wasn’t complex and fractured enough about chakras, it becomes more so as the west interprets the eastern view on chakras. First was an adaptation of the Kundalini chakra system with a western view, then a Theosophical view of chakras and lastly our present new age interpretations. It was Sir John Woodroffe complex body of chakra work called titled “The Serpent Power” http://www.scribd.com/doc/117167217/seprent-power-complete that took Kundalini to a new level. Later from this complex Kundalini body of work, came the now predominate western Theosophical view of C.W. Leadbeater in his book “The Chakras” that took strong hold of the western view of the chakras. www.anandgholap.net/Chakras-CWL.pdf look for Mahatma C.W. Leadbeater: Chakras.
Now this is where it gets interesting, the last influential person Christopher Hills, develops his own personal version of the rainbow colors of the chakra system. He published a book entitled “Nuclear Evolution” in the early 70’s, which probably did as much as Leadbeater to influence Western thinking about the chakras. Today this book is the western new age foundation for the Chakra Rainbow System. “In a very thick book, Nuclear Evolution, published in the early 1970s, Hills suggests that each of the chakras corresponds to one of the seven colors of the spectrum. He then associates each chakra and color with a particular personality type. A great deal of his book “Nuclear Evolution” is devoted to explaining each of these personality types in detail. His typology is quite fascinating, and certainly equal in profundity to the personality typology of comparable systems of character analysis, such as Carl Jung and Humanistic Astrology. Although the psychological aspects of this theory did not catch on, the idea of matching the seven chakras with the seven colors of the spectrum was so appealing that just about every book on the chakras written since then show the chakras in rainbow colors.” 136_leadbeater-charles-the-chakras“It would seem plausible to identify the rainbow chakras with the etheric body chakras in Barbara Ann Brennan’s formulation, and perhaps also the focal concentration points in Mantak Chia’s “Healing Tao” microcosmic orbit. The rainbow chakras therefore, if they have any validity at all, have validity inasmuch as they pertain to the etheric bodies.” 136_leadbeater-charles-the-chakras. Or as quoted in Wikipedia on the new age rainbow chakras “The convergence of these two distinct healing traditions and their common practitioners’ own inventiveness have led to an ever-changing and expanding array of concepts in the western world. According to medical intuitive and author, Caroline Myss who described chakras in her work Anatomy of the Spirit (1996), “Every thought and experience you’ve ever had in your life gets filtered through these chakra databases. Each event is recorded into your cells…”, in effect your biography becomes your biology.”

After studying all this research, I started to understand why trying to activate my color chakras had no effective change for my physical or emotional stability. Nor did I experience my greatest desire which was tuning more deeply into my spiritual self. Some of the side effects I experienced from focusing on chakra activations were very sleepy reactions and headaches, but I had no lasting significant expected changes from chakra training. These unfulfilled desires are what led me to the online School of Chi Energy. At the School of Chi Energy, I learned that chakras are bioenergy circuits that work like a vortex. These vortexes are activated with the student’s ability to make a bioenery form together along with taking it through that particular body part. I learned through practical application and practice that various repetitive flow patterns resulted in extraordinary experiences in consciousness along with emotional stability and better physical health. These results were more of what I expected. I learned to activate my (chakras) or seven vortexes in the School of Chi Energy. The School based all their chakra information on the latest scientific research of how energy actually affects your body. By going through the School, I was able to change what were metaphysical concepts into practical application. I learned that chakras were something that you could physically feel and sometimes physically see. Stay tune for the next article on Chakra training and information on how chakras really activate.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In Santana/Hindu and tantric/yogic traditions and other belief systems chakras are energy points or knots in the subtle body. Chakras are part of the subtle body, not the physical body, and as such are the meeting points of the subtle (non-physical) energy channels, called nadiis. Nadiis are channels in the subtle body through which the life force (prana), or vital energy moves. Various scriptural texts and teachings present a different number of chakras. There are many chakras in the subtle human body according to the tantric texts, but there are seven chakras that are considered to be the most important ones.  Their name derives from the Sanskrit word for “wheel” or “turning”, but in the yogic context a better translation of the word is ‘vortex or whirlpool’.
Etymology
Written in Sanskrit, the word derives from the Proto-Indo-European *keklos, and its cognates include Greek kuklos, Lithuanian kaklas, Tocharian B kokale and English “wheel,” as well as “circle” and “cycle”.

Bhattacharyya’s review of Tantric history says that the word chakra is used to mean several different things in the Sanskrit sources:
“Circle,” used in a variety of senses, symbolizing endless rotation of shakti.
A circle of people. In rituals there are different cakra-sdhan? in which adherents assemble and perform rites. According to the Niruttaratantra, chakras in the sense of assemblies are of 5 types.
The term chakra also is used to denote yantras or mystic diagrams, variously known as trikoa-cakra, a akoa-cakra, etc.
Different “nerve plexus within the body.”
In Buddhist literature the Sanskrit term cakra (Pali cakka) is used in a different sense of “circle,” referring to a Buddhist conception of the Cycle of Rebirth consisting of six states in which beings may be reborn.
The linguist Jorma Koivulehto wrote (2001) of the annual Finnish Kekri celebration having borrowed the word from early Indo-Aryan.

History
While breath channels (nis) of yogic practices had already been discussed in the classical Upanishads, it was not until the eighth-century Buddhist Hevajra Tantra and Carygiti, that hierarchies of chakras were introduced.

Characteristics
The Texts and teachings present different numbers of chakras. Also different physical structures are considered chakras. David Gordon White thus emphasizes:

“In fact, there is no “standard” system of the chakras. Every school, sometimes every teacher within each school, has had their own chakra system.”
The following features are common:
They form part of the body, along with the breath channels, or nadis, and the winds (vayus).
They are located along the central channel (sushumna/avadht).
Two side channels cross the center channel at the location of the chakras.
They possess a number of ‘petals’ or ‘spokes’.
They are generally associated with a mantra seed-syllable, and often with a variety of colors and deities.

Use in religious traditions

Hindu Tantra

Kundalini energy
Thousand Petalled Crown Chakra, Two Petalled Brow Chakra, Sixteen Petalled Throat Chakra (Nepal, 17th Century)
David Gordon White traces the modern popularity of the “Hindu” seven chakra system to Arthur Avalon’s The Serpent Power, which was Avalon’s translation of a late work, the Satcakranirupana. In actuality, there are several models and systems present in Hindu tantric literature, as White documents. Kundalini is a feature of Hindu chakra systems.

Buddhist Tantra
Vajrayana

Chakras play an important role in the main surviving branch of Indian Vajrayana, Tibetan Buddhism. They play a pivotal role in completion stage practices, where an attempt is made to bring the subtle winds of the body into the central channel, to realize the clear light of bliss and emptiness, and to attain Buddhahood.

The Vajrayana system states that the central channel (avadht) begins at the point of the third eye like of lord Shiva, curves up to the crown of the head, and then goes straight down to the lower body. There are two side channels, the rasan and lalan, which start at their respective nostrils and then travel down to the lower body. The apna vyu governs the lower terminations of the three channels. The lower end of the central channel ends in the rectum. The lower end of the lalan ends in the urinary tract. The lower end of the rasan channel emits semen.

The side channels run parallel to the center channel, except at locations such as the navel, heart, throat and crown (i.e. chakras) where the two side channels twist around the central channel. At the navel, throat and crown, there is a twofold knot caused by each side channel twisting once around the central channel. At the heart wheel there is a six fold knot, where each side channel twists around three times. An important part of completion stage practice involves loosening and undoing these knots.

Within the chakras exist the ‘subtle drops’. The white drop exists in the crown, the red drop exists in the navel, and at the heart exists the indestructible red and white drop, which leaves the body at the time of death. In addition, each chakra has a number of ‘spokes’ or ‘petals’, which branch off into thousands of subtle channels running to every part of the body, and each contains a Sanskrit syllable.

By focusing on a specific chakra (while often holding the breath) the subtle winds enter the central channel. The chakra at which they enter is important in order to realize specific practices. For example, focusing on the sub navel area is important for the practice of tummo, or inner fire. Meditating on the heart chakra is important for realizing clear light. Meditating on the throat chakra is important for lucid dreaming and the practices of dream yoga. And meditating on the crown chakra is important for consciousness projection, either to another world, or into another body.

A result of energetic imbalance among the chakras is an almost continuous feeling of dissatisfaction. When the heart chakra is agitated, people lose touch with feelings and sensations, and that breeds the sense of dissatisfaction. That leads to looking outside for fulfilment. When people live in their heads, feelings are secondary; they are interpretations of mental images that are fed back to the individual. When awareness is focused on memories of past experiences and mental verbalizations, the energy flow to the head chakra increases and the energy flow to the heart chakra lessens. Without nurturing feelings of the heart a subtle form of anxiety arises which results in the self-reaching out for experience. When the throat chakra settles and energy is distributed evenly between the head and the heart chakras, one is able to truly contact one’s senses and touch real feelings.

Bön
Chakras, according to the Himalayan Bönpo tradition, influence the quality of experience, because movement of vayu cannot be separated from experience. Each of the six major chakras is linked to experiential qualities of one of the six realms of existence.

A modern teacher, Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche, uses a computer analogy: main chakras are like hard drives. Each hard drive has many files. One of the files is always open in each of the chakras, no matter how “closed” that particular chakra may be. What is displayed by the file shapes experience.
The tsa lung practices such as those embodied in Trul Khor lineages open channels so lung (Lung is a Tibetan term cognate with vayu) may move without obstruction. Yoga opens chakras and evokes positive qualities associated with a particular chakra. In the hard drive analogy, the screen is cleared and a file is called up that contains positive, supportive qualities. A seed syllable (Sanskrit bija) is used both as a password that evokes the positive quality and the armor that sustains the quality.

Tantric practice is said to eventually transform all experience into bliss. The practice aims to liberate from negative conditioning and leads to control over perception and cognition.
Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche teaches a version of the Six Lokas sadhana which works with the chakra system.

Qigong
Qigong also relies on a similar model of the human body as an energy system, except that it involves the circulation of qi (ki, chi) energy. The Qi energy, equivalent to the Hindu Prana, flows through the energy channels called meridians, equivalent to the nadis, but two other energies are also important: Jing, or primordial essence, and Shen, or spirit energy.

In the principle circuit of qi, called the Microcosmic orbit, energy rises up a main meridian along the spine, but also comes back down the front torso. Throughout its cycle it enters various dantians (elixir fields) which act as furnaces, where the types of energy in the body (jing, qi and shen) are progressively refined. These dantians play a very similar role to that of chakras. The number of dantians varies depending on the system; the navel dantian is the most well-known (it is called the Hara in Japan), but there is usually a Dantian located at the heart and between the eyebrows. The lower dantian at or below the navel transforms essence, or jing, into qi energy. The middle dantian in the middle of the chest transforms qi energy into shen, or spirit, and the higher dantian at the level of the forehead (or at the top of the head), transforms Shen into wuji, infinite space of void.

Hesychasm
A completely separate contemplative movement within the Eastern Orthodox church is Hesychasm, a form of Christian meditation. Comparisons have been made between the Hesychastic centres of prayer and the position of the chakras.[18] Particular emphasis is placed upon the heart area. However, there is no talk about these centers as having any sort of metaphysical existence. Far more than in any of the cases discussed above, the centers are simply places to focus the concentration during prayer.

Western interpretations of Hindu Chakras
Recent Western traditions associate color’s and physiomotional functions for each of the 7 main Chakras.
Western Adaptation of Hindu Yogic Chakras
Esotericism
In Western culture, a concept similar to that of prana can be traced back as far as the 18th century’s Franz Anton Mesmer, who used “animal magnetism” to treat disease.

However it was only in 1927 that the shakta theory of seven main chakras, that has become most popular in the West, was introduced, largely through the translation of two Indian texts: the Sat-Cakra-Nirupana, and the Padaka-Pancaka, by Sir John Woodroffe, alias Arthur Avalon, in a book titled The Serpent Power.

This book is extremely detailed and complex, and later the ideas were developed into the predominant Western view of the chakras by C. W. Leadbeater in his book The Chakras. Many of the views which directed Leadbeater’s understanding of the chakras were influenced by previous theosophist authors, in particular Johann Georg Gichtel, a disciple of Jakob Böhme, and his book Theosophia Practica (1696), in which Gitchtel directly refers to inner force centres, a concept reminiscent of the chakras.

New Age
According to medical intuitive and author, Caroline Myss, who described chakras in her work Anatomy of the Spirit (1996), “Every thought and experience you’ve ever had in your life gets filtered through these chakra databases. Each event is recorded into your cells…” in effect your biography becomes your biology.

The chakras are described as being aligned in an ascending column from the base of the spine to the top of the head. New Age practices often associate each chakra with a certain color. In various traditions chakras are associated with multiple physiological functions, an aspect of consciousness, a classical element, and other distinguishing characteristics. They are visualized as lotuses/flowers with a different number of petals in every chakra.

The chakras are thought to vitalize the physical body and to be associated with interactions of a physical, emotional and mental nature. They are considered loci of life energy or prana, also called shakti, qi (Chinese; ki in Japanese), koach-ha-guf[ (Hebrew), bios (Greek) & aether (Greek, English), which is thought to flow among them along pathways called nadis. The function of the chakras is to spin and draw in this energy to keep the spiritual, mental, emotional and physical health of the body in balance. They are said by some to reflect how the unified consciousness of humanity (the immortal human being or the soul), is divided to manage different aspects of earthly life (body/instinct/vital energy/deeperemotions/communication/having an overview of life/contact to God). The chakras are placed at differing levels of spiritual subtlety, with Sahasrara at the top being concerned with pure consciousness, and Muladhara at the bottom being concerned with matter, which is seen simply as condensed, or gross consciousness.

In his book on Japa Yoga, Himalaya Press 1978, Swami Sivananda states that a yogi that practices Japa with only the Om and is successful at Mahasamyama {oneness with the object…in this case a Word being meditated on} becomes a direct disciple of that, the OM, the most Holy of all words/syllables { the same as the word of creation as recognised by the Torah, although this is not professed or quite possibly not even recognised by those of secular authority in either Judaism or Christianity} thus the yogi achieving this feat needs no Guru or Sat-guru* to achieve any Spiritual goal {*Archetype / Ascended Master i.e. A Krishna, a Rama, a Jesus, a Nanak a Buddha..et al.} and Swami Sivananda mentions that this yogi has a path that is, in all recognisable ways and manners, reverse of that of other Yogis or Spiritual aspirants and their paths and those include all Christian ascetics, in that this spiritual aspirant then works through the chakras, mastering them from the crown down. Satprem explains in page 67 of his book “Sri Aurobindo or the Adventure of Consciousness”(ISBN 81-85137-60-9), in Sri Aurobindo and the Mother’s Integral Yoga the practitioner experiences a “descent” where the Grace and Light works through and enlightens the chakras from top crown chakra downwards.

Whereas every other well-known path and all major religions[citation needed] start by trying to master the chakras starting with the ‘Svadhisthana Chakra’ {Sex}, these Yogis aren’t expected to renounce sex or certain foods, and by virtue of this they do not need to remove themselves from the world of temptations and become monks or recluses. They can stay in the world of men and live what appears to be a normal life that observes whatever local custom{s} there may be. Trevor Ravenscroft also mentions this spiritual goal and achievement in his book, “The Cup of Destiny”, and says that these practices and achievements were known and the most highly regarded and desired by the Templar Knights of old.

New Age writers, such as Anodea Judith in her book Wheels of Life, have written about the chakras in great detail, including the reasons for their appearance and functions.
Another interpretation of the seven chakras is presented by writer and artist Zachary Selig. In the book Kundalini Awakening, a Gentle Guide to Chakra Activation and Spiritual Growth, he presents a unique codex titled “Relaxatia”, a solar Kundalini paradigm that is a codex of the human chakra system and the solar light spectrum, designed to activate Kundalini through his colour-coded chakra paintings.

Some chakra system models describe one or more Transpersonal chakras above the crown chakra, and an Earth star chakra below the feet. There are also held to be many minor chakras, for example between the major chakras.

Rudolf Steiner considered the chakra system to be dynamic and evolving. He suggested that this system has become different for modern people than it was in ancient times, and will in turn be radically different in future times.[24] Steiner describes a sequence of development that begins with the upper chakras and moves down, rather than moving in the opposite direction. He gave suggestions on how to develop the chakras through disciplining the thoughts, feelings, and will.[25]

7 Chakras

According to Florin Lowndes, a ‘spiritual student’ can further develop and deepen or elevate thinking consciousness when taking the step from the ‘ancient path’ of schooling to the ‘new path’ represented by Steiner’s The Philosophy of Freedom.
Endocrine system
The primary importance and level of existence of chakras is posited to be in the psyche. However, there are those who believe that chakras have a physical manifestation as well. The author Gary Osborn, for instance, has described the chakras as metaphysical counterparts to the endocrine glands, while Anodea Judith noted a marked similarity between the positions of the two and the roles described for each. Stephen Sturgess also links the lower six chakras to specific nerve plexuses along the spinal cord as well as glands.C.W. Leadbeater associated the Ajna chakra with the pineal gland, which is a part of the endocrine system. Edgar Cayce said that the seven churches of the Book of Revelation are endocrine glands. However, these associations have never been scientifically verified.

Spectrum of light
A development in Western practices dating back to the 1940s is to associate each one of the seven chakras to a given color and a corresponding crystal. For example, the chakra in the forehead is associated with the color purple, so to try and cure a headache a person might apply a purple stone to the forehead. This idea has proven highly popular and has been integrated by all but a few practitioners.

Mercier introduces the relation of color energy to the science of the light spectrum:

As humans, we exist within the 49th Octave of Vibration of the electromagnetic light spectrum. Below this range are barely visible radiant heat, then invisible infrared, television and radio waves, sound and brain waves; above it is barely visible ultraviolet, then the invisible frequencies of chemicals and perfumes, followed by x-rays, gamma rays, radium rays and unknown cosmic rays.

Understanding existence and physical form as an interpretation of light energy through the physical eyes will open up greater potential to explore the energetic boundaries of color, form and light that are perceived as immediate reality. Indian Yogic teachings assign to the seven major chakras specific qualities, such as color of influence (from the 7 rays of spectrum light), elements (such as earth, air, water & ether), body sense (such as touch, taste, and smell), and relation to an endocrine gland.

Chakras

I want to be clear—I don’t want you to believe that the chakras don’t exist.
I cannot be sure of their existence myself, as no one has been able to “measure” these energetic centers in the body. But just because science hasn’t been able to prove their existence, doesn’t mean they don’t exist.
There are certain implications about the existence of chakras that need to be explored. For starters, there is no unified theory of the chakras.
There is no consensus as to their shape, size, color, meaning, location, related organs and emotions or even how to balance or clean them if such a thing can be accomplished.
Sure, you will find book authors and teachers, many of whom speak about the chakras with such authority as if they had been present when God Herself invented them.

But the truth is that many people who claim to be enlightened or claim to see and feel the chakras with detail, or both, have spoken about them in terms that are nothing short of contradictory. Some systems have 7, 9, 13 or however many chakras. Some say the third eye is blue, others purple and others say gold. Some say the root chakra is in the perineum, others in the anus, and the discrepancies only get bigger as authors add more details to their theories.

What is in the scriptures?
We can find most of the mentions of the subtle system in the Upanishads (very old yogic texts). They usually mention seven chakras, and along with their names, sometimes you can find location (not always the same for each chakra), their “bija sound” (seed sound or mantra) and their number of petals.

The colors? They began to appear in Western literature not that long ago. The idea that there is a strong relationship to our different organs and body systems or to different stones or affirmations is even newer.

Don’t even get me started on which poses affect which chakras.
Who’s telling the truth?
I would contend that if there is no way to measure them, at the very least the experience of the chakras should be somewhat universal. What I mean is: the experts who claim to see and feel the chakras should have much more agreements about the way they experience them. If the chakras do exist, and have a specific color, shape, and amount, then why is there so much disagreement among those who claim to know them authoritatively?
I consider three distinct options:

Nobody knows the details, and our minds “fill in the gaps” of our knowledge about them.
Only a few people know the chakras in the “right” way. Everyone else is wrong.
The chakras don’t exist, and we have a case of massive delusion and placebo effects.

Does it matter?

This is, I believe, the ultimate and perhaps most important question of this subject. I use the chakras because they serve me and my students. They are a great way to describe our different needs as human beings and to tie them to a physical sensation, so it’s easier to access in a more tangible way.

To me, it is irrelevant if you are actually cleaning the chakra or if it’s the placebo effect helping you create more balance in your life. What matters to me, is that it works for you.
And I have seen it work, regardless of the color or whatever detail you may assign to the chakra. What seems to make a difference is how much you believe in what you are doing, both as a facilitator and as a student or client.

What is missing?
I believe we are missing some humility in the way the theories of the subtle body are taught.
Just because you were taught a system that works for you and your students, doesn’t make it an absolute, universal truth. Just because you can see the chakras one way, doesn’t mean that someone else might experience them differently, yet in a completely valid way.
So I suggest that you teach the chakras the way you see them, not the way “they are.” Treat the chakras with respect by allowing them to be true in the relative terms they have come forth to each one of us.
This way, even if the chakras turn out to be a myth, they will remain a very useful and valuable one.

The Eight Major Chakras

[From Kundalini Yoga: The Flow of Eternal Power by Shakti Parwha Kaur and The KRI Aquarian Teacher Training Level 1 Manual]

The Lower Triangle
The first three chakras deal with the physical needs of the body and the basic needs of life. They focus on elimination and reduction.

First Chakra: Security and Survival
Foundation, survival, security, habit, self-acceptance.
Location: End of the spine between the anus and sexual organs.
Organ/Gland: Organs of elimination (e.g., colon).
Color, Element: Red, Earth.
Yoga Exercises: Crow Pose, Chair Pose, Body Drops, Frog Pose, Front Stretches, Lying on Stomach, Root Lock.

Second Chakra: Creativity
To feel, to desire, to create.
Location: Sex organs.
Organ/Gland: Sex organs, reproductive glands, kidneys, bladder.
Color, Element: Orange, Water.
Yoga Exercises: Frog Pose, Cobra Pose, Butterfly, Sat Kriya, Cat-Cow, Pelvic Lifts.

Third Chakra: Action and Balance
Willpower. Personal power and commitment.
Location: Area of the Navel Point, solar plexus.
Organ/Gland: Solar plexus, liver, gallbladder, spleen, digestive organs, pancreas, adrenals.
Color, Element: Yellow, Fire.
Yoga Exercises: Stretch Pose, Sat Kriya, Bow Pose, Diaphragm Lock, Breath of Fire.
Balance Point

The Heart Center, or Fourth Chakra, is the balance point in the body between the flow of the upper energies of the Heavens and the lower energies of the Earth, where experience shifts from “me to we” or “me to Thee.”

Fourth Chakra: Love and Compassion*
Awakening to spiritual awareness; forgiveness and service.
Location: Middle of the chest on the breast bone at the level of the nipples.
Organ/Gland: Heart, lungs, thymus gland.
Color, Element: Green, Air.
Yoga Exercises: Ego Eradicator, Baby Pose, Yoga Mudra, all pranayama, all arm exercises.

Upper Triangle
The chakras in the upper triangle and the aura – which combines the effects of the other seven chakras – accumulate, create, and refine the energy. There are no specific gross elements associated with the Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth chakras, as they correspond to the more subtle realms.

Fifth Chakra: Projective Power of the Word
Hearing and speaking the Truth. The Teacher.
Location: The throat.
Organ/Gland: Trachea, throat, cervical vertebrae, thyroid.
Color, Element: Light blue, Ether.
Yoga Exercises: All Chanting, Cobra Pose, Plow Pose, Shoulder Stand, Cat-Cow, Neck Lock.

Sixth Chakra: Intuition, Wisdom, and Identity
The union of opposites; understanding one’s purpose.
Location: Between the eyebrows (the “Third Eye”).
Organ/Gland: Brain, pituitary gland.
Color: Indigo.
Yoga Exercises: Focus on the Third Eye, Kirtan Kriya, Archer Pose, Whistle Breaths, all exercises with forehead resting on floor.

Seventh (Crown) Chakra: Humility and Vastness
Transcendence. The Tenth Gate. The seat of the soul.
Location: Crown of the head.
Organ/Gland: Brain, pineal gland.
Color: Violet.
Yoga Exercises: Ego Eradicator, Sat Kriya, Concentrating on the Tip of the Nose, All meditation.

Eighth Chakra: The Aura
Radiance.
Location: Electromagnetic field surrounding the physical body.
Color: White.
Yoga Exercises: Triangle Pose, Ego Eradicator, Archer Pose, All arm exercises and all meditation.