Photo taken of Mr Ajay Patel at the recent 2013 Maha Kumbh Mela, where Mr Patel suprised many...
A Chakra is a Psychophysical reality, a vortex of light or psychic energy existing multidimensionally at the interface between body and mind.
At the grosser level the Chakras have associated links in the physical body through various Endocrine Glands, Nerve Plexuses, Organs and the (CNS) Brain and Spinal Cord.
On a more subtle level Chakras operate like transducers stepping down the cosmic energy like a top down hierarchy of energy and consciousness, filtering down through the depths of the Unconscious Mind to permeate the physical Body. Chakras can be understood as part of the here and now mortal body, and part of the immortal collective super conscious state of the divine, which is inherent in all beings
Chakra Sadhana is an initial step in purification and awakening of the Chakras, which brings one to an experience of understanding ones spiritual point of evolution. From the Yogic viewpoint we aspire through many incarnations to develop spiritually, and from where we finish in our last incarnation, this is the level of Chakra awakening that we begin to manifest, when in this lifetime we begin our journey again through spiritual efforts and Sadhana.
Whether you are a believer in a higher power or are a complete atheist, when the Chakras begin to manifest and unfold you will have your own direct experiences that will assist you in your Journey in Self Discovery.
Working on the Chakras helps bring balance and harmony at a deep level of our being. These benefits filter down and effect our grosser mind, emotions, and the physiological systems of the body. Apart from the health benefits of balancing and awakening the Chakras, when they awaken you may experience psychic and or spiritual perceptions and visions, which make you realise that there is much more to Yoga and life than first realized.
This initial awakening has an effect on the nervous system and brings into action previously dormant areas of neural circuitry in the brain. The awakening of subtle energy in the Chakras also helps us discover inherent creativity that helps us enjoy life more fully.
Chakra awakening also takes you much deeper into meditation, because when the Chakras are activated the mind becomes effortlessly one pointed.
~ Swami Mounamurthi Saraswathi
The concept of chakra originates in Hindu texts and features in tantric and yogic traditions of Hinduism and Buddhism. Its name derives from the Sanskrit word for "wheel" or "turning" (cakraṃ चक्रं [ˈtʃəkrə̃], pronounced [ˈtʃəkrə] in Hindi; Pali: cakka चक्क, Thai: จักระ, Telugu: చక్రo, Tamil: சக்கரம், Kannada: ಚಕ್ರ, Chinese: 轮, Tibetan: འཁོར་ལོ་; khorlo).
The chakras are believed to be a number of wheel-like vortices which, according to traditional Indian medicine, exist in the surface of the subtle body of living beings. The chakras are said to be "force centers" or whorls of energy permeating, from a point on the physical body, the layers of the subtle bodies in an ever-increasing fan-shaped formation. Rotating vortices of subtle matter, they are considered focal points for the reception and transmission of energies. Different belief systems posit a varying number of chakras; the best-known system in the West has seven chakras.
It is typical for chakras to be depicted as either flower-like or wheel-like. In the former case, "petals" are shown around the perimeter of a circle. In the latter, spokes divide the circle into segments making the chakra resemble a wheel (or "chakra"). Each chakra possesses a specific number of segments or petals.
Texts describing the chakras go back as far as the later Upanishads ( Thai: อุปนิษัทฺส์), for example the Yoga Kundalini Upanishad.