The Sanskrit name of the first chakra, Muladhara, means root, support or foundation. Muladhara is considered the foundation of the “energy body”. Muladhara is said to be the base from which the three main energy channels or nadis emerge: the Ida, Pingala and Sushumna. Yogic systems stress the importance of stabilizing this chakra. Kundalini awakening begins here.
The Root Chakra is located at the base of the spine. The associated element/sense is Earth/smell. It is masculine in nature, and associated with the color red. The adrenal gland is associated with the Root Chakra, and produces corticosteroids and catecholamines. The Root Chakra controls all solid parts: spinal column, bones, teeth, nails, anus, rectum, colon, blood and building of cells.
The qualities and functions of the Root Chakra deal with survival, fight or flight response, instincts, ambition, strength, grounding, individuality, stability, health, primal trust, stillness, courage, satisfaction, material security. Balanced characteristics include good health, vitality, being comfortable in one’s body, stability, prosperity, sense of trust in the world, feeling safe and secure, and having the ability to relax and be still.
The dysfunctions include lower back pain, sciatica, varicose veins, depression, immune related disorders, survival, social order, insecurity, unstable, focus on material possessions. These dysfunctions could stem from many different traumas and abuses such as birth trauma, abandonment, physical neglect, poor physical bonding with mother, malnourishment, survival threats, potent illness, major surgery, physical abuse, violent environment, inherited traumas (parent’s survival fears). Therefore, the demon of the Root Chakra is fear.
Engaging in healing practices that involve reconnecting with the body can help open, balance, and align the Root Chakra. Yoga asana that focus on opening the leg channels are an effective means to heal the Root Chakra. The following crystals/gemstones can be worn or carried to help balance the Root Chakra: black tourmaline, bloodstone, red jasper, ruby, Smokey quartz. The following aromas can be used in a bath or diluted in almond oil or jojoba oil and used in massage, as perfume, or in a vaporizer to help open and balance the Root Chakra: cedar, clove pepper, vetiver, angelica root. The following foods can be consumed to help balance the Root Chakra: beets, cherries, red cabbage, red currant, red meat, red peppers, red plums, strawberries. The following affirmations can be stated in the morning and at night to activate the Root Chakra: “I Have”, “I accept my life here on Earth”, “I am rooted in life and in myself”, “I am stable, safe, and secure”.