Vishuddha – Fifth Primary Chakra

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The Vishuddha is the fifth primary chakra and means pure mind or especially pure. The Vishuddha is associated with communication, expression, listening and speaking and is located in the throat, near the region of the thyroid glands. It’s believed to enable a greater balance between the mind and body. 

This chakra is associated with the color blue, the element of aether, and the elephant Airavata. The space within the Vishuddha chakra signifies its ability to contain divine energy. In tantric traditions, the Vishuddha is also called Akasha, Dwyashtapatrambuja, and Kantha. Let’s take a closer look at the Vishuddha Chakra.

Learn about the other chakras:

Design of The Vishuddha Chakra

The Vishuddha chakra consists of sixteen greyish or purple colored petals.  These petals are etched with 16 Sanskrit vowels: a, ā, i, ī, u, ū, ṛ, ṝ, ḷ, ḹ, e, ai, o, au, ḥ, and ṃ. The vowels on these petals are associated with sounds of different mantras, and they also correspond to various musical tones.

The center of the Vishuddha chakra consists of a blue colored triangle that points downwards. Within this triangle, there’s a circular space that symbolizes aether or space.  Ambara, the four-armed deity, rules over this region on a white elephant, that symbolizes luck, purity and wisdom.

The circular space also has the mantra हं haṃ written in it. Recitation of this mantra can help release toxic elements from the body and purify the organs. Above the mantra there’s a white dot in which the blue-skinned deity, Sadashiva resides. Sadashiva’s five faces represent smell, taste, sight, touch, and sound. In his several arms, he holds objects such as a drum, a sword, a trident, and a noose, to name a few. Sadashiva wears a tiger skin, and his hands are positioned in an angle that suggests he’s thwarting fears and danger.

The female counterpart or the shakti within the Vishuddha chakra is Shakini. She’s a light skinned deity who blesses people with knowledge and wisdom. Shakini has five faces and four arms, in which she carries several objects such as a bow and arrow. Shakini resides and thrives on a red petaled lotus.

The Vishuddha chakra also contains a silver crescent that symbolizes nada, which means pure cosmic sound. The nadas an important aspect of the Vishuddha chakra, and further enhances its purity.

Functions of the Vishuddha chakra

The Vishuddha chakra’s the purification center of the body and it segregates the divine nectar from poisonous liquid. This segregation’s similar to the episode in Hindu mythology, where gods and deities churn the ocean to split nectar from poison. The divine nectar contains the power of immortality and is much sought after by saints and rishis.

The Vishuddha chakra can also help in the degeneration of the body. When the Vishuddha chakra’s inactive or closed, it aids in the process of decomposition. However, yogis and saints have the power to retain the nectar within the Vishuddha chakra and transform it into a life-giving liquid.

Role of the Vishuddha Chakra

The Vishuddha chakra aids in better listening and speaking skills. When the throat chakra’s strong, an individual can have honest communication with themselves and with others. Through plain communication, a person can discover inner truths about themselves.

Meditating upon the Vishuddha chakra leads to better clarity of thought about the past and future. The practitioner will also be granted with the power to thwart danger, diseases and old age.  

Activating the Vishuddha Chakra

The Vishuddha chakra can be activated by yoga exercises and meditative postures. Singing, reading out loud, and repeating the Hum mantra can activate the Vishuddha chakra. It can also be opened up with yogic postures such as the camel pose, bridge pose, shoulder stand, and the plow pose. These postures and breathing exercises will stimulate the throat and bring more energy to that region.

Some practitioners stimulate the Vishuddha chakra through affirmations. Since the throat chakra’s related to communication and speaking, the practitioner can use affirmations such as I am willing to communicate with honesty, to build up the confidence and courage to speak.

The Vishuddha chakra can also be opened through essential oils, candles, and incense fragrances, such as frankincense, geranium, jasmine, eucalyptus, and lavender, to name a few.

Factors That Hinder the Vishuddha Chakra

The Vishuddha chakra won’t be able to function to its fullest ability if the practitioner lies, gossips, or speaks ill about others. There must be positive thoughts and speech in order for this chakra to remain stable and pure.  Furthermore, smoking, drinking, and drug consumption can hinder the functioning of the Vishuddha chakra.

Those who have an imbalanced Vishuddha chakra will experience neck and shoulder stiffness, along with respiratory issues. Imbalances in the throat chakra can also lead to speech dominance or speech inhibition.

The Associated Chakra for Vishuddha

The Vishuddha chakra’s closely associated with the Lalana chakra. This is a twelve petaled chakra, located in the roof of the mouth. It contains divine nectar and it’s associated with both positive and negative emotions.

The Vishuddha Chakra in Other Traditions

The Vishuddha chakra has been an important part of several other practices and traditions. Some of them will be explored below.

Vajrayana yogic practices: In Vajrayana yogic practices, the throat chakra’s used for meditation and dream yoga. Meditating upon the Vishuddha chakra can enable clear dreams. The yogi or practitioner can enter these dreams and continue their meditation within them.  

Western occultists: Western occultists have associated the Vishuddha chakra with wisdom, understanding, and knowledge. Some have also determined it to be a reflection of mercy, strength, expansiveness, and limitation.

Hindu astrology: In Hindu astrology, the throat chakra’s governed and associated with the planet Mercury. A birth chart of an individual can show an image of Mercury and highlight if there are any problems or ill omens with regard to the throat chakra.

In Brief

The Vishuddha chakra’s the space where speech and communication originate. The chakra reiterates the importance of pure thoughts and words. The Vishuddha chakra helps an individual to communicate with themselves and comprehend their own profound thoughts and emotions.

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