A Guide to the Chakra System: Understanding the Heart Chakra
In many eastern and mystical traditions, chakras are believed to be the centers of physical, mental, and spiritual energy within our bodies through which all energy flows.
The 4th chakra in the chakra system is the heart chakra, also known as the green chakra.
Learning more about the heart chakra and understanding the chakra energy system as a whole may open doors to profound spiritual understanding and personal awakening.
What is the Heart Chakra?
The Sanskrit word for the heart chakra is Anahata, which means unstruck or unhurt. In its position as the fourth and therefore middle chakra, the heart chakra is thought to balance and integrate the physical and spiritual energies of the upper and lower chakras.
Note: This article was written based on people’s belief in metaphysics.
Heart Chakra Behavioral Functions
Anahata has been called “the way of the heart.” Not to be confused with romantic love exclusively, the heart chakra encompasses all aspects of love and the many ways it is expressed, including self-love.
The fourth chakra is also associated with caring, compassion, generosity, forgiveness, acceptance, empathy, kindness, emotional warmth, respect, and joy. It is believed to be a foundational energy in all our relationships, allowing us to experience a sense of connectedness and belonging that unites us all in universal consciousness.
Heart Chakra Element
The element associated with the heart chakra is air. Air is a symbol of both breath and life. Air is also a symbol of movement, as the lungs move air in and out of our bodies, while the air around us can span the gamut from a gentle breeze to a raging wind storm.
Heart Chakra Location
Despite its name, the heart chakra is not located above the heart but rather in the center of the chest at the level of the heart.
Heart Chakra Color
While you might assume the heart chakra would be red, the fourth chakra’s color is actually green. Gemstones associated with the fourth chakra include jade, green calcite, green tourmaline, malachite, emerald, green aventurine, unakite, ruby, and rose quartz.
Heart Chakra Symbol
The heart chakra symbol contains two triangles, representing the three base chakras and the three higher chakras, positioned on top of one another to form a six-point star. The star symbol is then surrounded by a circle with 12 petals. The 12 petals represent the qualities of the heart, which include harmony, clarity, joy, patience, peace, kindness, purity, compassion, forgiveness, bliss, gratitude, and love.
Heart Chakra Blockage
When the heart chakra is blocked, people may feel disconnected from both themselves and others. A heart chakra blockage can take many forms and be experienced with varying levels of intensity, from minor emotional upsets to full-fledged emotional firestorms.
Heart Chakra Blockage Signs
A sign that your fourth chakra is blocked is a diminished sense of love and compassion toward yourself, others, or both. You may find it difficult to express and receive love.
When you are experiencing a heart chakra blockage, you may also find it difficult to engage with other people in positive ways, or you may find it hard to forgive those who’ve hurt you. You might feel short on empathy and long on judgement. Isolation and loneliness may arise. Emotional overwhelm in the form of anger, sadness, or anxiety is also a common effect of a blocked fourth chakra.
When the heart chakra is blocked, repressed feelings and unresolved painful issues from your past may emerge in your consciousness and impact your ability to experience peace and joy in your present life.
In relationships, heart chakra blockages may take the form of uncontrollable jealousy, defensiveness, lack of trust, impatience, and frequent fighting. If you’re having trouble entering new relationships and forming meaningful bonds with others, that, too, may be a sign that the heart chakra is blocked.
Clinging tightly to deep grief over an unnaturally extended period may also indicate that your heart chakra is not open to receiving the love still left in the world for you.
When the Anahata chakra is blocked, you find it difficult to live in gratitude and joy. Instead, you find yourself living in a state of disconnectedness in which inner peace and happiness are elusive.
Heart Chakra Healing and Opening
Opening the heart to unconditional love is paramount if you want to live a joyful, balanced life. Hence, when the heart chakra is blocked, wellness practitioners advocate taking positive steps to transcend the ego’s limits and open the door for fourth chakra healing.
Heart Chakra Balancing
There are many healing exercises to unblock the heart chakra you can perform to unblock and balance your Anahata chakra.
Emotional centering is the first step toward healing imbalances in the heart chakra. Repressed feelings and emotions must be brought to the forefront and released.
The process of opening the heart can take many forms. For instance, deliberately seeking out ways to show kindness to others helps open the heart. Spending time in nature and appreciating its beauty is conducive for opening up the heart chakra. Opening yourself to receiving divine direction from the universe is also thought to have chakra healing and restorative properties.
Many find that certain yoga poses are helpful in opening the heart chakra, including the bridge pose, the half camel pose, the wheel pose, and the upward facing dog pose.
The heart chakra mantra is “YAM,” so chanting this mantra may help facilitate emotional release and reclamation of well-being.
Heart Chakra Meditation
Visualization and meditation are powerful spiritual modalities for opening the heart to unconditional love and connecting with the heart center. Using heart chakra meditation and visualization, you can begin to open your heart chakra in minutes.
As you enter your meditation to remove blocks from your heart chakra, visualize your body, mind, and spirit being bathed in pure, unconditional love. Allow your breathing to remind you of the flow of love in your life; breathe in pure love that others offer to you, breathe out pure love that you willingly offer to all those around you. Turn your attention to your beating heart and listen to the rhythmic sound of your continual heartbeat. Let your own heart remind you that you were born to experience continuous love in your life, pure love as steady as your beating heart.
Heart Chakra Affirmations
Being the energetic center of love, the heart or green chakra can also be opened by reciting these Anahata chakra affirmations frequently and with great feeling.
- I am open to giving and receiving unconditional love.
- I welcome into my heart center abundant joy and unwavering peace.
- I love myself with all my heart.
- As I release past hurts, my heart lightens and my life is enveloped in pure love.
- I freely and easily connect with all living beings, knowing that I am one with the universal tapestry of all life.
- Love is the guiding force in all my words, thoughts, and actions.
- I release all grievances I once held toward others and embrace forgiveness for all, including myself.
- Kindness, respect, and love emanate throughout my life.
- I love and accept myself unconditionally, just as I am.
- It is easy for me to form supportive, loving relationships with others.
- I am loved, loving, and loveable. Love is at the core of my very existence.