The Vishuddha Chakra, also known as the Throat Chakra, is the fifth of the seven main chakras we are studying. This chakra is associated with communication, self-expression and the ability to express one’s truth by using your unique resonance to express yourself, to say what you need to say and empowering yourself through language and sound.
The deity associated with the Vishuddha Chakra is Lord Dakshinamurthy, a form of Lord Shiva who represents knowledge, stillness of mind that leads to wisdom and connects us to the inner guru or teacher. He is often depicted as sitting under a banyan tree in a meditative posture, imparting knowledge, experienced wisdom and guidance to seekers. The mantra acknowledges and reveres this form of Lord Shiva, seeking his blessings and wisdom.
namo rudraya shambhave
Translation: “To the embodiment of Lord Dakshinamurthy, who resides under the banyan tree, who is engrossed in deep meditation, to Lord Rudra, to Lord Shambhu, I offer my salutations.”
Let us go through the sacred geometry of the Vishuddha Chakra. First the primary colour is typically a light or sky blue. This colour symbolises clarity, open and expansiveness of space. The nature of a vast boundless sky. See, feel and think of blue when practicing.
The Vishuddha Chakra is seen as a blooming lotus with sixteen petals. The sixteen petals signify the elements of speech and sound, as well as the sixteen vowels in the Sanskrit language the opens us up for clear and authentic communication, enabling individuals to convey their thoughts, feelings, and truths in an honest way.
The Yantra for the Vishuddha Chakra consists of a full moon, with a silver ring of light outlining it, like an eclipse. In various cultures and spiritual traditions, the full moon is associated with spiritual growth and the peak experience of awareness. Emphasising the power of lunar light, its rejuvenating nature that cleanses and creates clarity so that the mind is absent of impurities. We then can bathe in this illuminated space, connecting to our creativity, understanding of what matters to us most and gaining greater insight to offer truthful and authentic communication to fulfil our dharma.
Within the full moon is a downward triangle, representing the divine feminine’s creative way she expressed herself as you. The shape suggests the importance of descending into one’s physical, energetic and emotional depths.
What is motivating the thoughts and words spoken? As the triangle draws down, inquire…what is motiving your self-expression?
- Anahata Chakra: Excessive attached to grief or radical compassion & acceptance?
- Manipura Chakra: Caught in a shame spiral or purposely empowered?
- Svadhisthana Chakra: Stuck in the bondage of guilt or passionately in a creative flow?
- Muladhara Chakra: Unnervingly insecure, paralysed by fear or safely rooted in the grounded-ness of being?
This inquiry gives you the understanding of what you are experiencing and then verbally expressing them in a healthy and productive way that serves the greater whole.
The seed mantra for the Vishuddha Chakra is “HAM”, which represents the essence of Akasha, the element of Space associated with this chakra. Space is the medium through which sound travels. Chanting this mantra, HAM is believed to help open and balance the space within the throat chakra. This connection to sound, underscores the importance of clear, harmonious and truthful communication. Using your unique resonance to express yourself, empowering yourself through language and sound to share your insights. The Hasta Mudra is Akasha Mudra thumb to the middle finger. Notice the space it creates in the palm and energetic connection to the throat and space within and around.
The animal symbol often linked to the Vishuddha Chakra is the white elephant. The white elephant is a symbol of purity, gentleness, strength, intelligence and wisdom. In many cultures, the elephant is revered for its intelligence, memory, wisdom and great ability in their communication within the herd. In Hindu mythology, the white elephant is known as the vehicle for Lord Indra, the king of the gods. To manage ALL the Hindu Gods, one must need a lot of support in how to communicate to keep the peace.
The white elephant is also associated with the concept of Vairagya/detachment. We practice to become better at our discernment/Viveka, in the choice of thoughts, words and deeds being of truthful, clear and compassionate expression. The next step of practice is to detach from the outcomes of communication. Then return back to practice.
Our practice is to address Vishnu Granthi that covers the heart and throat chakra impedes Prana from flowing. Either we are so knotted up in the throat and there is too little space. That the Rajasic experience is one of excessive speaking, stutter, shouting, too much noise even in our own thoughts, we can’t listen because our voice is too loud and dominating, we communicate by reacting with force and volume. On the other spectrum, there is too much space, there is a Tamasic experience of not being able to bring thoughts, words or actions together to have an effective impact. There tends to be poor rhythm of speech, fear of speaking or to fill the space we tell ourselves and others lies.
Ideally we practice to unravel this knot and to balance in a sattvic way for ourselves to connect to this element of space in the throat opens us to think about how we share space. How we build bridges of communication through space, to connect. How we hold space for ourselves and others, and is what we share productive? Creative? Supportive? Loving? Inclusive? Tolerant? Safe? You can use the acronym THINK; is it thoughtful, helpful, inspiring, necessary and kind?
The practice is to actively strengthen and stretch this space, filling it with a loving awareness, more of the fullness of lunar presence that is supportive and inspiring. This encapsulates and emphasises the importance of purity, wisdom, gentleness and strength in what we learn, what we feel is true, loving and honest and how we communicate it. Ideally using language to truthfully and compassionately speak to support, encourage, guide and inspire.
The results of practice is to hopefully bring this quality of awareness to all thoughts, words and deeds as an expression of your true self, the essence of what you truly are…Consciousness which is joyous, loving and always free.