Solar Plexus Chakra: The Meaning of the 3rd Chakra
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The Chakra system explores how energy impacts and guides our holistic wellness, including our personal power. While chakras that are out of balance can manifest themselves as physical sensations and illnesses, they also act as a form of consciousness and connection to the universe.
Chakra is also spelled Cakra, Sanskrit C̣akra. It means “wheel,” and refers to any of a number of psychic-energy centres of the body where bodily functions “merge and interact with each other.” Psychic energy is that which is said to be unexplained or inexplicable by natural laws. There are an estimated 88,000-114,000 chakras situated in the human body, according to Britainnica and Healthline, respectively.
Six or seven are considered major chakras.
The seven major chakras include:
- Root Chakra (Muladhara): Your root chakra is located at the base of your spine (tailbone). It represents your central foundation.
- Sacral Chakra (Swadhisthana): Your sacral chakra is located along your spine in your lower abdomen. It’s associated with sexual energy and reproductive health.
- Solar Plexus Chakra (Manipura): Your solar plexus chakra is located along your spine and above the navel, in the upper abdomen in the stomach area. It’s said to be responsible for the “butterfly in stomach feeling” or the “gut feeling.”
- Heart Chakra (Anahata): Your heart chakra is located in your chest. It’s what’s said to hurt when your heart aches from grief and loss.
- Throat Chakra (Vishuddha): Your throat chakra is located in your throat and is associated with communication skills or communication problems. People who have been in abusive relationships or grew up in unhealthy households may have to develop a connection to their throat chakra later in life. This is what we call “finding our voice.”
- Third-Eye Chakra (Ajna): Your third-eye chakra is located at the third-eye location in between your eyebrows and above the top of the nose bridge.
- Crown Chakra (Sahasrara): Your crown chakra is located at the “crown” of the skull. It’s associated with higher consciousness, connection to God or Goddess, or higher power.
What Is chakra healing?
Chakra healing is all about unblocking energy or removing negative energy in your body that is preventing the proper flow of your energy wheels.
You can have blocks in all your chakras if you’re new to knowing they exist or your body is storing trauma. You may also only have a block in a particular chakra, like the solar plexus chakra.
Working with the idea of energy flowing, though, you can take the right steps explained below (sometimes dubbed “self-care”) to unblock your chakras.
The solar plexus chakra meaning
Your solar plexus chakra is associated with inner confidence, self esteem, and listening to and asserting yourself and your true needs. When it’s out of balance, we leave ourselves more vulnerable to self-harming behaviors such as self-abandonment and self-compromise.
We may struggle with low self esteem and have a hard time seeing the positive qualities we bring to the world. In this state, it’s difficult to feel motivated to reach our full potential.
The manipura chakra governs personal power and identity but it is also connected to digestive health and metabolism. Here we can see the emerging intuitive understanding of the brain-gut connection or mental health and mood connection to our gut health.
Working to balance the Manipura chakra honors this holistic way of looking at personal health, and can even be a way to mitigate the negative effects of digestive system disorders.
What does Manipura mean?
Manipura is a Sanskrit word with several accepted English translations including:
- Mani = jewel
- Pura = place or city
- City of jewels
- Lotus gem
- Lustrous gem
- Home of our ego and confidence
Quick facts about the manipura, or third chakra
- Location: Upper abdomen in the stomach area (couple fingers or inches above navel but under breast bone area).
- What it controls: Elements of personal power including self-worth, self-confidence, and self-esteem
- Color: Yellow
- Animal: Ram
- Element: Fire (manifests as heat in the solar plexus)
- Stone: Amber
- Associated shape: Downward triangle; represents spreading of energy for growth and positive development.
Start to balance chakras with a scan of your physical body
You can begin listening to what your chakras are signaling by doing a body scan. It can be challenging or even uncomfortable trying to quiet the mind at first, so do this in a safe space where interruptions will be minimized. Clear negative energy from the space with an aromatherapy mist or incense burning.
Suggestions for body scanning for your solar plexus chakra:
- Lie down on your back with a pillow under your knees
- Place your hands over your stomach area (overtop your navel)
- Close your eyes and take a deep breath, exhaling any negative energy
- How does your breath feel coming into your body?
- Does your diaphragm rise and fall fully?
- Is the oxygen feeling stuck?
- What emotions are coming up?
- If you need to stop here and begin working on balancing your manipura chakra, do so.
If you’d like to continue, ask yourself the following:
- What do you feel?
- What shape is the feeling?
- What color?
- Is it cold, hot, heavy, etc.?
- What do you want to do with it?
Oftentimes we can work through the energy blocks in our bodies by mentally bringing ourselves through the process. This is advanced level inner energy work and is best for people who have worked with an energy healer or trauma therapist before.
Signs of an imbalanced solar plexus chakra
Traditionally speaking, there are signs of imbalance associated with each particular chakra. Some of these signs can also be signs of underlying health conditions that may require treatment with a medical doctor. It’s always safest to use all the resources you have to ensure you’re taking care of all aspects of your health.
- Domineering attitude
- Not feeling motivated in life
- Low self esteem
- Difficulty making decisions
- Digestive issues
- Sick to stomach feeling
Signs of a balanced solar plexus chakra
A person with a balanced solar plexus chakra walks with a certain humble assuredness in themselves. They are the wise listeners rather than the loud talkers in a crowd. They are in tune with their goals, passions, and personal power.
They do not spend time on gossip, putting others down, or questioning their personal actions. People with a balanced solar plexus chakra also find greater ease in reversing negative thought patterns because their sense of self is strong.
- Empowered attitude
- Strong self-esteem
- Sense of self and life’s purpose
- Healthy metabolism
- Healthy appetite
The benefits of healing the solar plexus chakra
The exact benefits of healing the solar plexus chakra will depend upon your personal healing journey and where you are in the process. Regardless of your starting point, though, doing inner work can go a long way into balancing your energy wheel or wheels. Be prepared for the feeling of releasing negative energy. This can feel overwhelming at first but will be ultimately relieving.
When you spend time opening your manipura chakra, you may experience personal growth, a stronger sense of self, greater respect for your inner intuition or gut feelings, and the ability to say no to things that no longer serve you.
Saying no includes rejecting negative energy and reversing negative thought patterns holding you back from your true potential.
How to open your solar plexus Chakra
You can open your solar plexus chakra on your own terms (in solo practice) or with the help of someone experienced in energy and/or trauma work. Some examples include: Reiki workers, energy workers, light workers, energy healers, trauma-informed therapists or counsellors who can talk to you about somatic pain and somatic body work and guide you through the advanced steps mentioned above.
Working in this same way with religious guides, spiritual guides, or similar is also an option. Working with more than one type of professional is wise to get a multifaceted treatment approach that covers all bases.
Yoga Poses for Balancing the Solar Plexus Chakra
Challenging yoga poses for opening and balancing your solar plexus chakra are typically those that focus on stretching and strengthening your core area. Yoga is typically practiced in a session where you warm up your muscles before doing deeper stretches like these popular ones for opening the third chakra:
- Navasana AKA boat pose
- Kapalabhati pranayama or breath of fire
- Anjali mudra or prayer pose/prayer position
- Parivrtta Trikonasana or revolved or inverted triangle pose
- Bhujangasana AKA cobra pose
Consider joining a practice with a teacher and other students or following one of the many online yoga videos for opening your third chakra. Watching someone else and getting help with body adjustments helps prevent injuries and ensure you’re getting the most of your practice.
The best crystals for solar plexus chakra healing
When it comes to crystal healing and your solar plexus chakra, go for yellows and fiery stones that speak to you on a deep level. It’s always preferable to choose your stones in person so you can feel which ones you’re most attracted to. If this isn’t an option, be sure to ask the seller about their sourcing standards to ensure you’re working with the real deal.
Popular choices of crystals and stones include:
- Tiger’s Eye
- Lemon quartz
- Yellow Jasper
- Golden heliodor
Ways people use crystals in holistic healing include:
- Wear them as jewelry around the wrist, neck, or fingers.
- Carry a little satchel of stones and keep them in your pocket, purse, or home.
- Add the crystals to a healing bath with optional elements like epsom salts, dried flowers, essential oils.
- Add the crystals to your meditation session (hold them, make a crystal grid, place them in your altar area).
- Place the crystals under your bed at the solar plexus area while you sleep.
Aromatherapy for manipura chakra healing
There are certain plants (herbs, flowers, trees, berries) that may be used in aromatherapy practices like diffusing, burning, and melting. When it comes to working with new ingredients, pay the most respect to the natural gifts by saying a small thank you or by directly asking the herb, for example, what exactly you need or want from it.
The best aromas for solar plexus chakra healing are those that are:
Examples of essential oils or incense for manipura healing include:
- Atlas cedarwood
- Ylang ylang
- Black pepper
Positive affirmations for healing the manipura chakra
There are mantras also known as positive affirmations or positive life quotes you can say to help balance the solar plexus chakra, too. These sayings can help you feel motivated in your personal power sourcing journey.
People typically include mantra work into a meditation or yoga session, but you can make a mantra-only session as well. It may be helpful to sit down with a journal and pen and write down which mantras speak to you.
If something else feels better to repeat, write that down and listen to your intuition. The most powerful mantra will be the one you have the strongest pull toward and feel the best saying aloud.
Some positive affirmation for manipura chakra healing examples include:
- I listen to my inner intuition at all times.
- I honor what my body needs and am open to receiving its messages.
- I release past wounds that have hurt my self-confidence and I forgive myself for mistakes made while self-abandoning.
- I love and accept my inner voice and value my own opinion and perspective.
- I am valid in my feelings and will honor what they need from me.
Give yourself grace
Energy work is tiring before it’s rejuvenating! Go easy on yourself and treat each session of working with things like crystals, yoga poses, and aromatherapy a procedure of sorts. Drink lots of water afterwards, rest and move your body as needed, and be gentle with any emotions and negative energy that may become unstuck during this process.
Remember you’re amazing for embarking on this self-actualization and self-love healing journey and progress takes patience.