Guided Meditations for Svadhistana and Manipura Chakras

In the second class of the Chakra balancing series we’re currently doing at the studio, we focused on Svadhistana and Manipura chakras (2nd and 3rd). On Saturday past, my printer had run out of toner so I wasn’t able to print hand-outs as I would have liked, and I promised to post the guided meditation scripts that I used on the blog. Here you are: with special thanks to Wanderlust for these gorgeous words.

WATER

Svadhistana: A SWEET OCEAN MEDITATION

While you are earth, you are – quite surely – also water. Everything ebbs and flows, drips, drops, pours, splatters, trickles, ripples, soaks, splashes… everything is nurtured and nourished by water.

Sit on the edge of a cushion, pillow or blanket. Weave your fingers together, touch the tips of your thumbs and rest your hands in your lap. Close your eyes. Connect to the rise and fall of your breathe.

Imagine you are sitting in a small boat, a canoe perhaps. With each inhale that arrives, feel the sensation that you are floating on top of the water. With each exhale, you are drifting further and further from shore. Feel the vastness of the ocean below you. The possibility of the sky above.

Now, imagine that a wave rolls underneath you and rocks your boat. And then another. And another. Feel them come and go, come and go, holding within them life’s ever-changing nature.

Think of the many waves of your life. Some have lulled you with their gentleness, their consistency and comfort, while others have been giant, drag-down tsunamis that you nearly drowned in. All have integrated into the great big ocean that makes up the tapestry of you. You are each wave, but you are also the entire ocean. Honor all that has brought you here.

Ask yourself: Do I give myself permission to feel the fullness of all of my feelings in any given moment? Think of what you have stuffed inside or shoved away… What part of your emotional landscape in waiting to be acknowledged? On the other hand, ask yourself: What parts of the past am I clinging to? What am I ready to let go of?

Roll onto your back into Baddha Konasana with the soles of your feet together and your knees wide. If you need some support, prop blocks or pillows underneath your legs. Place your hands on your lower belly. Feel the vulnerability of this position, your body’s expression of total openness and receptivity. Ask yourself: Do I allow for pleasure in my life? And feel the space to listen…

Dance, swim, DTR, take a warm bath with essential oils of cardamom and sweet orange, eat sweet potatoes, sprinkle cinnamon on everything. Do/wear the things that make you feel sexy. Express your sensuality through movement-based practices. This part of you needs tending always. Look for the sweetness in life. Stop and smell the roses, as they say. And then walk on.

May you feel each of your feelings fully, and then surrender them to the flow.

FIRE

Manipura Chakra: A FIRE MEDITATION

In the same way that fire turns matter into heat and light, this is where you take what you’ve been given and make the best of it. And then some.

Without a strong third chakra, we remain stuck in the sameness and drudgery of a passive life. Manipura is action, doing, going through the eye of the needle, breaking inertia.

Note: Light a candle, or better yet, complete this meditation in the middle of a circle of lighted candles.

Sit on the edge of a cushion, pillow or blanket. Cup your left hand and make a fist with your right hand, extending your right thumb up. Place your right fist in your left open palm, and draw your hands in front of your solar plexus (located just below the sternum and above the navel). Close your eyes. Connect to the rise and fall of your breathe.

Imagine that your right thumb is a flame, flickering at the center of your being. With each inhale that you take, watch the yellow flame grow just a little bit brighter. Imagine a warmth spreading from this area of your body and filling you from the inside out…

Now, imagine that you have gathered a little stack of sticks. On each stick, write a word or phrase representing something in your life that is no longer serving you, something that you are in the process of letting go of, or need to be. Remember that some things must be let go of hundreds of times before we are free from them, maybe thousands. Forgive yourself this process, for letting go is one of the hardest things to engage with…

Now, place each stick into your flame. Watch it catch fire. And burn. And as each stick is completely burned, imagine that a gust of wind travels into your hands and carries the ash away from you, far far away.

Ask yourself: Do you have the energy to do the things you want to do? Do you have the confidence to do the things you want to do? What gets in the way? Oftentimes our energy is drained in one area of our life, and we are left lifeless before the mountain of wonderful, enriching experience that could be…

Stand up, with your feet a little wider than hips distance. Reach your arms overhead, weave your fingers together, and extend your pointer fingers. As you inhale reach up high, and with your exhale sweep your arms through your legs while shouting, “HA!” Inhale your arms back into the sky, exhale shoot your arms through your legs, “HA!” Do this ten times, and then pause, hands in prayer at your heart. Feel what has been stirred…

Boil sliced ginger for a tea, build a campfire, eat a spicy curry, take a heated yoga class, go for a run, massage some sandalwood into your sternum, make a plan, and execute.

Fire teaches us that power results from combining and integrating, rather than fighting and dominating. Remember, there is ease and grace in true power. And you are powerful beyond measure.

You can change.

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Swadhistana and Manipura Chakras: Questions for Journaling 

This morning’s class in the chakra balancing series focused on the 2nd and 3rd chakras: Svadhistana and  Manipura respectively.


Svadhistana – the sacral chakra – relates to sexuality, reproduction, sensuality, intimacy, desire, control, emotional expression. It relates the water element and its all about the fluids of the body: tears, lymph, urine, saliva, sweat, sexual fluids and more.

To tune into your sacral chakra, here are some suggestions:

Go for a long swim, luxuriate in a hot bath with essential oils of cardamom and sweet orange, eat sweet potatoes, sprinkle cinnamon on everything. Do/wear the things that make you feel sexy. Express your sensuality through movement-based practices, as we did this morning through our flip cat/cow/figure of 8 movements. This part of you needs tending always. Look for the sweetness in life. Stop and smell the roses, as they say. And then walk on.
May you feel each of your feelings fully, and then surrender them to the flow.
Questions you may wish to reflect upon:

What do I want?

What turns me on/off?

How do I express my sexuality?

How can I relax and go with the flow?

How do I adapt to change and new situations?

With whom am I intimate?

How do I honor my higher self?

What lessons are my relationships teaching me?

Suggestions for asana practice for Svadhistana: 

Hip and groin openers such as baddha konasana (Cobbler’s Pose) and crescent moon pose

Ocean breathing: relaxing your abdomen fully on the inhale, filling the lower belly as well as the lungs and exhaling naturally and effortlessly.

Yin yoga style pigeon pose and saddle pose, releasing muscular effort and using gravity to open the tendons and ligaments of the hips and reposition the sacrum.

Practicing next to or submerged in water — a pool, a river, a lake, an ocean. Water is the element of the sacral chakra.


Manipura chakra is concerned with integrity, willpower, digestion, energy, achievement and sense of self – with one’s inner fire and ability to assimilate all that life brings our way.

Located at the solar plexus, the Manipura chakra is the seat of your power and transformation. In the same way that fire turns matter into heat and light, this is where you take what you’ve been given and make the best of it.

Without a strong third chakra, we remain stuck in the sameness and drudgery of a passive life. Manipura is action, doing, going through the eye of the needle, breaking inertia.

Manipura controls our digestive fire (appetite/ digestion/ metabolism) and also our sense of self- ie self control/ will/ esteem/ vitality. How we control our temper and moods is indicative of the health of this chakra, likewise, the nature of our attitude towards eating and diet also highlights balance or imbalance in this area.

3rd chakra essential questions:

How do I act with strength and compassion?

Am I speaking and behaving with integrity?

What will I achieve today?

How shall I express my personal power?

Am I following a wholesome diet that is conducive to healthy digestion?

What negative habits do I need to give up? What positive habits should I cultivate in my daily life?

Practice suggestions for Manipura:

Uddiyana bandha (abdominal lock): exhaling and pulling the abdomen back and up

Any and all twists

Medium to fast sun salutations to warm the muscles, produce sweat and get a great cardiovascular workout

Core strengtheners like boat pose (navasana), double leg lifts, plank pose, crunches and so forth

To ignite your inner fire: Practice under the hot sun, in a heated studio or near a toasty bonfire. Boil sliced ginger for a tea, build a campfire, eat a spicy curry, go for a run, massage some sandalwood into your sternum, make a plan and execute it.

As always, please feel free to comment – questions or your own experience of the class or your home practice – anything goes!

Sources:

Elephant Journal 

Wanderlust