There are actually 114 chakras in the body. These are the junction points for the nadis in the human system. Nadis are the channels of praana (life energy). Though a chakra literally means wheel, they are actually triangles. Out of these 114, 2 are outside the body, and only 108 can be worked upon, remaining 4 flower as a result. Sadhguru elaborates on the significance of the number 108. These 112 chakras are arranged in 7 dimensions; it is these 7 dimensions that are referred as the 7 chakras. Chakras, apart from the physical dimension also have a spiritual dimension. Sadhguru elaborates on the qualities of each of the seven chakras; Muladhara, Svadishthana, Manuparaka, Anahata, Vishuddhi, Ajna and Sahasrara.
Around the twelve week mark, only one chakra is formed in the fetus; the Muladhara. Then, in the first twenty eight to thirty two weeks, the first five chakras, upto Vishudhi, are formed. How much do Agna and Sahsrar (the remaining two chakras) get, varies for every human being. By observing an infant's eyeball movement, and the way they cry, you can tell if the Agna is established or not. Sahsrar is generally not developed for most. In the Indian culture, there were many traditions, during pregnancy and infancy to facilitate the chakra's development in the mother's womb.
Mul-adhar means foundation. This chakra is the foundation of the physical and energy structure of a human being. It is very important to have a stable foundation. Only if the Muladhara Chakra is stabilized, one will experience health and wellbeing in life. Sadhguru narrates a beautiful story about Allama Mahaprabhu, a great sage, and elaborates on three fundamental ways in which the secretions of the pineal gland can be used - to strengthen the body and make it like a rock; bring high levels of drunkenness and blissfulness within you; make yourself like thin air and super-hype your perception.
Sadhguru tells us that Swadhishthana means “abode of the self”. He describes the many possibilities that mastery of this Chakra offers. If Muladhara and Swadhishthana are stabilized in an individual then health will happen from within. He also tells simple ways to stabilize the Muladhara and Swadhishthana in our system. To impress upon the power of Swadhishthana Sadhguru narrates an incidence that happened with Ram Dass when he went to meet Neem Karoli Baba. Sadhguru elaborates how Swadhishthana can be used in three different ways: It can be done with rituals, or by using the body, or by using pure energy.
Manipura (or Manipuraka), is the 3rd chakra. It is the maintenance center of the body. In the human system, this is the only place where all the seventy two thousand nadis meet and redistribute themselves. This makes Manipuara chakra more mobile than other chakras. The ability to move manipura give you a different kind of power. Far Eastern martial art styles make use of this, and move manipura in many different ways. Sadhguru also tells us how the spiritual practices make use of manipura.
Anahata means the 'unstruck sound'. Anahata, the 4th Chakra is the mergin point for the lower 3 chakras and the higher 3 chakras. In a way, Anahata has these six qualities. Sadhguru explains the significance of the symbol of Anahata, six pointed star, merging of upward moving triangle and downward facing triangle. Before going into Anahata sadhana, it is essential that the person has sweetness of emotion and steadiness of the intellect. When your energies are dominant in Anahata, you will start hearing and perceiving sounds - the language of the birds, animals, earth, and the atmosphere. For those interested in the mystical, this is a must read. Sadhguru tells us about what one experiences when in Anahata.
Vishuddhi, the 5th Chakra, means a filter. If your Vishuddhi is active, you will filter out all poisons that enter your system. Poison not necessarily in form of what you consume, a wrong thought, a wrong idea, energy, impulse can also poison you. If your energies are in Vishuddhi, you will not be impacted by whatever is happening around you.
Agna, the 6th Chakra, is the highest level of discernment and is the source of knowing. Agna is without any color, that is why it is related to vairagya. When your energies move into Agna, your perception will go beyond the normal limitations, and you will see everything the way it is. If this happens without any sweetness of emotion within you, you may completely lose interest in everything. Balance of clarity and sweetness of emotion is essential before touching Agna.
Sahasrar, the 7th chakra, is not a physical space. You can not stay there for too long. If you do, you can't hold onto the body. When your energies are in Sahasrar, you will simply float around in ecstasy. In that state, you cannot be functional in terms of human activity. Sadhguru also tells us about the third day's moon, and the symbolism of why it adorns as an ornament on Shiva's head. Sadhguru also elaborates on what is soma rekha, the tradition of pradosham in South Indian temples.
The Significance of Indian Classical Music, And Activating The Chakras
Modern science tells us that the entire existence is a reverberation of energy - or in other words - an amalgamation of sounds. The human ear can hear only a small band of the spectrum. But in certain states - Rithambhara Pragna - you can hear the sounds beyond this limited spectrum. The whole existence can be experienced as sound. When sounds are arranged in a certain pattern, they impact our system in a certain way - this is the science of mantras. Indian classical music is a modification of the mantras - where both aesthetics and technical arrangements are important. Indian classical music can activate the chakras and evolve a human being into higher levels of consciousness.
Many people refer to yoga as a philosophy. Philosophies are made up - they have nothing to do with reality. In yoga, there is no philosophy. Yogis are not a product of philosophies or scriptures. When they shared their experiences, people around them wrote it down. Whenever something is written down, the writer's mind also goes into it. So, these 7 chakras are not like 7 segments, this is just a certain classification for the intellect to grasp. Otherwise, life is happening as one big whole!