MANIPURA CHAKRA (SOLAR PLEXUS)
The human body is a miniature of the universe. Just as there are 7 main planets in the universe (according to the Vedic perspective), there are 7 main chakras in our body. Manipura Chakra is the most important chakra of these 7 chakras. Symbolically, the Manipura Chakra represents the Sun planet in our system, hence it is also referred to as the Solar Plexus.
According to Ayurveda and Yoga texts, Manipura chakra is situated exactly at the centre of the navel (belly button), and is in the form of a bird’s egg. It is the central point where the 72,000 significant naadis or energy channels intersect. Therefore, it is extremely important to ensure that this Chakra does not become dislodged.
The importance of this Chakra can be understood from the fact that during pregnancy, nutrients are supplied to the foetus from the mother’s system, through the umbilical cord connected to the belly button of the baby.
There is a long description given in Ayurveda and Yoga texts regarding the importance of the Manipura Chakra, what causes it to become dislodged, the consequences of a dislodged solar plexus, and the methods to realign this important chakra.
I’m sharing with you the essence of that information below:
Why does this chakra become dislodged?
If, at the time of birth, the umbilical cord is not cut properly, this chakra becomes weak and overly sensitive. Therefore, there is a strong possibility of this chakra to move from its original place.
Factors that cause dislodgement of the solar plexus (especially when this chakra is weak to begin with):
- Lifting heavy weights.
- Jumping or jogging.
- Getting up suddenly or with a jerk, from a horizontal/lying down position.
- Women are more at risk of experiencing dislodgement because their solar plexus becomes very sensitive during menstruation. During this period, extra physical exertion, undue stress/worry etc. may also cause dislodgement.
- Women should avoid doing inverting postures during menstruation.
- In general, women should be careful not to overexert themselves physically when exercising, especially during menstruation.
Consequences of a dislodged Solar Plexus:
- When the solar plexus moves downwards from its original position, it causes loose motions, excessive and uncontrollable urine, wet dreams, spermatorrhea, irregular menses, too long & excessively heavy menstrual flow, leucorrhoea, miscarriage etc.
- When it moves upwards, the individual will experience constipation, acidity, respiratory disorders, headaches & migraines, blood pressure, emotional problems, fertility issues e.g. difficulty in conceiving, miscarriage, oligospermia, weak sperms, weakness of kidneys & bladder, etc.
- When it moves sideways, this adversely affects the functioning of the liver, spleen, kidneys, ovaries, uterus, and heart.
When this chakra becomes dislodged, then –
- Inverting poses eg. Urdhva Sarvangasana (the shoulder stand), Shirsasana (the headstand), Viparit Karni (preparatory shoulder stand), etc. should be avoided.
- Paschimottanasana (backstretch pose), Janushirsasana (the knee & head pose), backward poses eg. Chakrasana (the wheel pose), Ushtrasana (camel pose), Bhujangasana (cobra pose) and postures such as Mayurasana (peacock pose), and other similar postures should be done very carefully and without jerking.
If this Chakra is dislodged and is causing any or some of the above mentioned problems, it is important to realign it instead of just trying to solve those problems by taking medicines, because no medicine can solve/cure these problems permanently.
There are several methods mentioned in Ayurveda and Yoga to realign the Manipura chakra, but the most effective way to realign this chakra is to balance it through Ayurvedic energy healing and chakra balancing, as this has an almost everlasting effect, unlike other methods which quite often prove to be a temporary solution. It is mentioned that once this Chakra is brought back to its original position through Ayurvedic energy healing and chakra balancing, it is highly unlikely that this Chakra will become dislodged again. Only in cases where someone undergoes any surgery on the trunk, throat or head part (where the seven chakras are situated), there is a possibility of the solar plexus becoming dislodged again. But it can be realigned again very easily and quickly.
Manipura Chakra (Solar Plexus) Realignment
How to strengthen and cleanse Manipura Chakra?
In Hatha Yoga, there is a very simple and specific technique recommended, which is called Uddiyan Bandh (abdominal lock).
Uddiyan means “upward” and bandh means “lock”, “contraction”, etc. Therefore, Uddiyan Badh means a technique in which the abdominal muscles are pulled inward and upward towards the spine, to the fullest extent, after a complete exhalation, and are kept contracted for some time.
- Sit on a cotton/jute rug or a yoga mat in Padmasana (Lotus Pose), Ardh-Padmasana (half Lotus Pose), Sukhasana(Easy Pose), or Vajrasana (Thunderbolt Pose), keeping your back completely erect and your hands on your knees.
- Take a few deep breaths.
- Inhale deeply and exhale completely using a little force, slowly pulling the abdominal muscles in at the same time.
- Bend your neck forward and press your chin in between the two collar bones.
- Hold the breath out and keep the abdominal muscles contracted.
- Press your knees or thighs, placing the palms of your hands on them. This will help you to contract the abdominal muscles much more.
- Maintain this position for a few seconds while holding the breath out. 8 – 10 seconds to begin with.
- Lift your chin up first and then release the abdominal lock by relaxing the abdominal muscles and inhale slowly.
- Repeat steps 3 – 8 for 5 times to start with and gradually increase it to 10 times.
- Do this on an empty stomach.
- Do not do it within 4 hours of eating, at least. And keep a gap of 2 hours after drinking water.
- Do not rush and do it slowly and gently.
- Must apply the chin lock while doing the abdominal lock to avoid any adverse effect on the heart.
- Do not hold the final position (step 7) for too long. If you feel the need to breathe in quickly after the release of the abdominal lock, it indicates that you held the breath out for longer than your natural capacity. This can be harmful.
- Must release the chin lock first before releasing the abdominal lock to avoid any harmful effect on the heart.
- Must do Shavasana (Corpse Pose) for at least 5 minutes after finishing this technique.
- Do not eat for at least 24 minutes after doing this exercise.
- People with heart issues must do this exercise under the supervision of a Yoga Guru or a qualified Yoga instructor.
- This simple technique has very long lasting, beneficial effects on the Manipura Chakra (Solar Plexus).
- This exercise helps to facilitate regular energy flow through the naadis (energy channels) around the solar plexus – hence, it allows the energy to flow smoothly towards the other chakras as well (particularly towards the 2 lower chakras).
- This helps to speed up the metabolism and thereby boost one’s energy level.
- This helps to correct the proportion and improve the quality of the “Sapta Dhatus” (seven sustainers), i.e. Plasma, Blood, Muscles, etc.
- This technique also helps to correct the position of the uterus, if it is tilted or prolapsed, and also prevents tilting/prolapsing in the future.
- This purifies the vital fluid (cervical fluid in women and semen in men), regulates ovulation, improves quality of sperms, etc. and hence increases the chances of conception.
- Iron deficiency, weakness of muscles and bone tissue can be easily corrected by regular practice of this simple technique.
There are many more benefits mentioned in the Yogic texts – one can experience these benefits by practicing these techniques regularly.
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