The Muladhara, or Root, chakra, is all about our survival needs – food, shelter, safety. With our Sacral chakra, we begin to move from basic existence to what makes life worth living – the pleasurable things in life.
The crescent moon within the lotus petals represents the fluidity in this chakra. The sacral chakra rules the “water” in the body – the bladder and circulatory system, as well as the pelvic region and the reproductive and sexual organs.
Our sacral chakra is the center of pleasure, sensuality, intimacy and connection. It’s about feelings and emotion. Creativity is also key in this chakra.
When our Sacral Chakra is out of balance
When our second chakra is balanced, we have a healthy attitude toward sex and intimacy. We allow ourselves to trust and be open to the pleasures of life, trying new experiences, finding joy in our relationships with others and moving our bodies in physically freeing ways.
If our second chakra is too open, we may be overly emotional or have promiscuous behaviors. Too closed, and we may experience impotence and other sexual disorders.
But this chakra is about more than sex; it’s about having a zest for life.
When that “joie de vivre” is suppressed or depressed, we lose our motivation. Dysthymia is a low-level state of depression, one where you never really experience highs and lows. If we continue living in a state of chronic emotional pain, we shut down our feelings and sensations. We disconnect with ourselves, making it harder to connect with others.
Those who have been physically and/or sexually abused might disassociate themselves from what they’re experiencing in their body to protect their minds. Even when they’re in a relationship with a loving partner, they may find it difficult to feel safe enough to enjoy themselves.
According to Anodea Judith, author of many books about the chakra system, we can be both excessive (too open) and deficient (too closed) at the same time. For instance, we may be sexually promiscuous but shut down in our feelings.
Guilt is the primary demon for the second chakra, according to Judith. Guilt prevents us from enjoying life and keeps us out of the present. Guilt is full of “shouldn’ts” – we shouldn’t want that, we shouldn’t feel this way, we shouldn’t need this.
As children, we look to the adults around us for guidance. If we’re continually told, “You shouldn’t feel that way,” or “You don’t want that,” what does that to do us on a psychic level? We’re too young to understand why we want what we want or that our feelings are neither good nor bad, they just “are.” We don’t always have the words even to describe how we feel or how to name them. So we assume this very important person in our life knows us better than know ourselves.
Physically, an out of balance second chakra may manifest in complications of the bladder, kidneys or urinary tract. Or we may experience impotence or an overall rigidity in our movements.
Bringing our Sacral Chakra back to balance
How do we get back to a balanced state in our second chakra?
We establish boundaries so that we feel in control of our sexual intimacy with others if it’s been hard for us to say “no” to unwanted sexual advances. We work with a professional who can help us explore and name our feelings, if we’ve been shut down to them all of our life.
The goal is to nurture ourselves, connect in a healthy way to others, and to learn to move our bodies freely.
Yoga keeps us connected to our bodies and staying in the present.Poses that focus on the pelvis, such as Happy Baby and pelvic lifts or hip opening poses such as Upavistha Konasana (Wide-legged Seated Forward Fold) bring our attention to the sacral chakra.
If working with stones and crystals interests you, moonstone is a good one to use. Moonstone channels the feminine energy (which we all have). Try placing it below your belly button or on your sacral spine and visualizing an orange ball of energy there.
We’ve moved from the basic needs in the Muladhara chakra to finding some pleasure in life, in the second chakra. Manipura, our third chakra, helps us find the will to bring fruition to some of our desires.
Svadhistana Chakra Snapshot
- Sanskrit name – Svadhisthana
- Meaning – one’s own place
- Location – lower abdomen, between the navel and genitals
- Symbol – six-petalled lotus containing a crescent moon
- Color – Orange
- Seed sound – Vam
- Element – Water
- Crystal – Citrine, carnelian, moonstone, golden topaz
- Affirmations – I flow with the rhythms of life. I am worthy of love and sexual pleasure. I have a right to express my desires to myself and others.
- Yoga poses – those that focus on the hips and pelvis, such as hip openers and forward bends