Third or Manipura Chakra
The Power Chakra
The third or Manipura chakra is linked with the gravitational center of the body, having self-command, and being balanced within your chi or personal energy. It is also connected with willpower, drive, ambition, and the desire for achievement and enjoyment of good times and good company.
On one hand, this chakra’s qualities can contribute to developing the strength of your ideas, intentions, and personal sense of power. You mature in awareness and unlock your potential to move revitalizing and uplifting energy throughout the body. On the other hand, third chakra potentials can develop in egocentric directions that can involve treachery and/or controlling others to serve your own interests.
Most of us have the potential to move beyond self-consumed perspectives. Speaking to others in ways that help them feel better, refusing to support harmful agendas, and acting boldly for the good of the larger community or ecosystem are potent third chakra attributes. But there’s a catch. You have to have the willingness as well as the potential, and it takes more than a little spiritual discipline to be humble about your accomplishments, acknowledge that you received help and luck from known and unknown sources, and hold back from bragging about what you’ve done.
The third chakra is also about inspiration and initiative. It includes the determination, drive, and focused perseverance that is often needed to realize your goals. Using our strength, passion, and will, we can watch for the next chance to act in a constructive way that resonates with the higher purpose of our heart and soul.
THIRD CHAKRA POSSIBILITIES
Considerate of others’ boundaries
Helpful, service to others
Respectful and democratic
Attitude of equality
Fuzzy self-other boundaries
Uncaring, out for oneself
Out of balance
The Pathway of Spirit: Imagery in the Third Chakra
The Triangle, the Lotus Leaves, and the Seed Sounds
Everything in plate 3 surrounds the red downward pointing triangle, a symbol for the element fire, the third chakra’s element. Fire is linked to the solar plexus and the stomach, which is the “furnace” that burns the food we need to survive. Here we find the Sun. Since the Sun is said to be related to intellect, in this chakra we experience our intellectual abilities to organize and manage. The nature of fire is one of purification and also destruction. What goes into the fire may get purified. But when the fire gets out of control, it will destroy or be destroyed.
After the point and the circle, the triangle is the simplest form. Since the red triangle faces downward, it indicates that movement in this chakra is downward toward the first two chakras. From here those chakras are organized and utilized.
The three raised lines off of the triangle represent three forces that are called gunas: tamas, or inactivity and laziness; rajas, or energy and activity; and sattvas, or illumination. These lines can also refer to our mental tools--ego, mind, and intellect--or India’s three main deities--Brahma the Creator, Vishnu the Preserver, and Shiva the Destroyer and the Lord of Yogis.
The ten lotus leaves represent ten more inner phenomena that we have to learn to handle. They can all contribute to keeping the illusion of our own created world alive. Harish Johari identifies them as spiritual ignorance, thirst, jealousy, treachery, shame, fear, disgust, delusion, foolishness, and sadness. One can think of these as side effects of getting too entangled in the power games of this chakra.
The seed sound of the element fire is RANG. The RA-sound originates in the navel and the NG-sound brings the energy to the brain. It will increase the digestive fire and may help you to live a long life.
A Longevity Visualization
Visualize the ten lotus leaves starting next to the top going clockwise.
As you visualize, utter the seed sound of each lotus leaf: DANG, DHANG, RLANG, TANG, THANG, DANG, DHANG, NANG, PANG, PHANG. Then visualize the downward pointing triangle and end with the seed sound of the element fire, RANG.
The Ram, Bradda Rudra (right), and Lakini Shakti Devi (left) will be discussed later in turn.
Practical Tools for Third Chakra Work
Purpose: Focusing on the present moment and calming the mind
Using a mudra can make it easier to focus your mind and be in the present moment.There are many different mudras or “seals” made with the fingers and the hand exercises to symbolically express various inner states of mind.
The mudra described here is one in which statues of goddesses and meditators are often shown, with palms facing upward toward the sky and the thumb of each hand touching the index finger to form a small circle. The three remaining fingers held close together point forward or upward--your choice. It is called the Chin Mudra or mudra of wisdom. It can also be done with your palms and fingers facing downward toward the earth instead of upward, which makes it easy to practice in a public place without anyone noticing.
To begin, notice and relax your breath and place your hands in a comfortable position on your legs with palms facing up toward the sky.
Next allow the top point of your thumb and index finger on each upward facing hand to come together to form a small circle.
Let your mind sit quietly with your hands resting in this position for calming benefit or do your mantra, your prayers, or affirmations. When your hands, the instruments of the mind, are in this position energy moves upward to link with the wisdom of your higher Self.
To help keep your attention in your immediate present, if you like you can make your mudra into a “moving mudra.” As you inhale, let your thumbs and fingers separate by about an eighth of an inch. As you exhale, let them touch. Continue in this way.