The sacral chakra is linked to the right to joy, pleasure, and an emotionally rich life. The sacral chakra regulates the water element in the body. When someone is feeling emotionally drained, or lacks emotional expression or creativity, we call him “dry”. In Ayurveda a person who has a balanced water element is stable in his emotions. Thus the water in our body is not just responsible for circulation, it is also responsible for emotional balance.
In this article, we will discuss three mudras that can benefit the sacral chakra.
What are Mudras?
Mudras are hand gestures that activate a certain element or energy in the body. The five fingers represent the five elements. The energy activation point lies on the fingertips. When the fingertips are connected, the subtle energy in your body gets activated. The thumb represents the fire element. This element represents agni within the body, and it serves to activate all the other elements.
The index finger represents air, middle finger ether, ring finger earth and the little finger represents the water element.
When different hand formations, or mudras, are formed, the combination of subtle elements has a powerful effect on the mind and body.
An Overview of the Sacral Chakra
Each of the seven chakras has defining features that make it unique. Below is the profile of the sacral chakra, known in Sanskrit as स्वाधिष्ठान (svadhisthana), or “one’s proper place.”
Physical location: The lower abdomen, hips, and pelvis. By bringing your awareness to the sacral plexus, or the bundle of nerves low in your belly, you can feel the energy of your second chakra.
Developmental stage: Six months to two years. As an infant starts to crawl, speak, and explore their environment, they slowly learn what they like and don’t like. As they decide how they will interact with the world around them, their self-identity begins to take shape.
Chief domains: Movement, pleasure, feelings, and desires. The sacral chakra influences how we relate to our emotions and regulates our sexuality.
Emotional challenge: Guilt. If a child’s pleasure-seeking is frustrated, or if they are excessively punished, they may develop a low sense of self-worth. They may think, “I do not deserve pleasure.” This can result in repression, addiction, and other forms of self-loathing. Another common outcome is that the child becomes angry and rebels.
The second chakra is fully healed when one finds self-worth, attains emotional maturity, and gives up their rebellious tendencies.
Element: Water. The well-being of the sacral chakra regulates the emotions and sensations that flow through the nervous system. This chakra determines how well we are able to adjust to the fluid circumstances of life.
The Physiology of the Sacral Chakra
The sacral chakra balances the water element, the reproductive organs and among the endocrine glands it controls the adrenal glands. The concept of purity in the Vedic or yogic system is related to celibacy, hence from a young age celibacy is practiced in all traditional spiritual cultures. When such purity is maintained, the sacral chakra gets activated and brings about emotional balance. Imbalance in relationships damages the sacral chakra. Adrenal glands regulate metabolism and are also responsible for stress response. Balancing sacral chakra improves our emotional stress response.
RECOMMENDED: For a complete guide to the many mudras and their benefits, check out Healing Mudras: Yoga of the Hands by Yogi Nataraj.
Mudras for the Sacral Chakra
As we have already discussed, each chakra deals with an element and an endocrine gland influencing the body. To purify the chakras, we must practice the mudras relating to the specifi element as well as the proper endocrine gland or system.
The sacral chakra deals with the water element, the adrenal glands, and the reproductive system.
The first mudra we will cover is the Varuna mudra:
The Varuna Mudra
Gently touch the tips of the thumbs and the little finger. Gradually adjust until you can feel your pulse in your fingertips. Keep your other three fingers as straight as possible. Practice this mudra for about 15-20 minutes.
When Should I Perform the Varuna Mudra?
The Varuna mudra is useful for treating the following symptoms:
- Feeling emotionally drained
- Emotional Stress
Remember that it is very important to feel your pulse while performing this mudra.
The next mudra we will cover is known as the Apana mudra. The reproductive organs are connected to the downward-moving air channel called Apana vayu. The most appropriate mudra to cleanse this channel and the reproductive organs is the Apana mudra:
The Apana Mudra
Connect the tip of the thumb to the tips of the middle and ring finger as shown. Adjust the pressure at the tips until you can feel your pulse the fingers. Once you feel your pulse, the apana vayu and your root chakra are activated. Practice this mudra for 15- 20 minutes.
The last mudra we will cover is similar but slightly different. This mudra is known as the Apana Vayu Mudra. The Apana Vayu mudra specifically rejuvenates the sacral chakra:
The Apana Vayu Mudra
Perform Apana Mudra, then fold the index finger so that the tip of the index finger touches the base of the thumb from the side. Hold this mudra for 15-20 minutes.
Apana Vayu and Emotion
There is a very interesting explanation in the nadi sastra which says that all our repressed emotions are stored in apana vayu, the downward air. When we are stressed we binge eat and we feel somewhat satisfied, but that is a temporary cover up. The repressed emotions continue to be stored in the apana vayu or the lower abdominal area. Until these repressed emotions are purified by mudra and mantra, we cannot experience inner emotional happiness as we will be confronted by the repressed emotions.
After performing the Varuna mudra, Apana mudra and Apana vayu mudra which are the primary mudras to activate and heal the sacral chakra we can perform the Brahma mudra which activates the lower abdominal nerves and energizes the sacral chakra.
The Brahma Mudra
Make a fist with both hands with the thumb wrapped in the fingers. Now hold the the palms facing skyward and both hands pressed together at the knuckles. The hands then gently rest against the pubic bone.
Bija Mantra for the Sacral Chakra
When we perform the mudras we can also chant the bija mantras that activate the chakra. Bija means seed, this seed carries the energy of activation of the chakra. The Bjia mantra for the sacral chakra is vam pronounced “vang,” similar to how the syllable om is chanted.
When we chant the bija mantra along when we perform the mudra we get an even better effect of both the mudra and the mantra. Once we are situated in the mudra the soft chanting of the bija or the seed mantra along with concentration on the chakra is very beneficial.
Suggested Mudra Sequence for the Sacral Chakra
- Sit in a quiet place if possible, sit with your back straight or against the wall. You can even sit on a chair.
- Perform the Varuna Mudra. Meditate on the Bija mantra by reciting it softly or in the mind as you practice the mudra. Practice this mudra for 15 minutes.
- Perform the Apana Mudra . Meditate on the Bija mantra for 15 minutes.
- Perform the apana vayu mudra with the bija mantra for 15 minutes.
- Perform the Brahma Mudra along with the soft chanting of the bija mantra vam for 15 minutes.
You can practice the sequence based on your time available. If you have 15 minutes perform the first mudra. If you have more time you do the second one and so on.
This sequence will benefit you immensely in cleaning the chakra and becoming emotionally stable.