Muladhara chakra, at the base of the spine, is ruled by the earth element, has strong impact on our material accomplishments through possession of wealth, prosperity, fame, success, popularity and power. Our longings for these things keep us anchored here in the lowest centre.
|Location||: Base of the spine|
|Number of petals||: Four|
|Color||: Golden Yellow|
|Presiding Deity||: Ganesha|
|Quality of Nature (Guna)||: Tamas (Inertia)|
|Seed syllable||: Lam|
|Sense organs||: Nose (organ of smell), anus (organ of excretion)|
|Benefits due to concentration||: Physical comfort, External beauty, Money and Happiness of a lower grade.|
|Name of the Fire||: Dakshinagni (Fire of the South)|
|Vrittis (Tendencies)||: Pleasure through material possessions, Desire to possess, Charity prompted by ego and vanity; and Greed|
|Loka (Plane of existence)||: Bhuh|
|Vital breath||: apana (helps of excretion)|
|Virtue||: Shama (Control of the Mind)|
|Zodiac||: Aquarius and Leo|
|Ruling Planet||: Saturn|
The Muladhara Chakra, which is located at the base of the spine, is one of the most powerful centers, since it represents the last confluence of three holy rivers - or three pranic channels passing through spine. We need to take a dip in these rivers, that is, concentrate at this centre, before we begin our spiritual journey upwards. In Sanskrit, Mula means root, and adhara means support or base. Whether within the body is represented by the earth or mula. The base of spine contains the earth element. This centre is also called the money centre because it is associated with the material world.
In order to acquire anything in this world, we need money. We need money for our education, to buy a house or a car or in case of wedding. We require money energy also for our simplest daily food and for some primary needs even if reduced to the minimum. The Muladhara is the chakra representing money, but money, in this particular case, doesn't mean currency or coins, but the physical resources or the buying capacity of a person. To be able to specify how much money we exactly need, we have to be either highly spiritual or complete lunatics.
Everyone says they want money, but no one is ever capable of specifying how much. Our needs and their complementary greed keep on increasing. The Muladhara takes up most of our time, life and energy. We spend the majority of our waking moments earning money to either pay off loans from the past, to enjoy ourselves in the present or to save up for the future. Our existence is ruled by this centre. In comparison other activities such as eating, sleeping, creative work, even building a relationship, in comparison, take up much less time.
We need to regulate this center and carefully analyze our effective physical and financial needs. Material wealth should be like a pair of shoes that fit us perfectly, nor too big nor too small. If shoes are small they hurt and if they are too big, the are uncomfortable.
The development of the Muladhara chakra enhances our material prosperity by strengthening our earning potential. Assets, fame, luxuries and power are all benefits of a highly developed Muladhara chakra. While focusing on Muladhara chakra, this chakra opens us upto the abundance of the Universe and makes us grateful recipients, as mere prosperity of fame without adequate understanding of their purpose can be extremely detrimental if not even outright dangerous. There are many influx of fame and money, and who have not been able to handle the sudden influx of fame and money, and who have turned either to drugs or alcohol for support. Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monoroe, and many other celebrities and millionaires ended their lives in despair despite being blessed with remarkable wealth.
Those who are engaged in regular meditation practices centered on the highest goal of self meditation, succeed in opening the chakras in a steady and informed way and gain steadiness of mind which makes the vagaries of affluence seem quite irrelevant. Such people are able to handle the material benefits of the Muladhara without losing their balance and know how to use the wealth and power gained to benefit all of mankind, further than themselves. Their serene and meditative outlook helps them focus on the good of humanity and dissipates their selfish interests. To such people material wealth is nothing more than a reflection of the abundance of the earth and gold, unless useful for a higher purpose, is little more than dust to them. A story from Puranas well illustrates this truth.
Gold or Dust?
A husband and his wife, a very spiritual couple, were walking along a country road. On the way the husband saw a gold coin. Assuming that his wife would be temped by gold id she saw it, he quickly covered it by kicking some dust over the gold coin with his shoe. His wife saw him scuffling and asked what he was hiding. So the husband has to confess that he had covered a gold coin with dust, so it would not become a source of temptation for her. The wife, who was much more spirituality advanced than her husband, replied: "Do you still see the difference between gold and dust? They are both same to me.
Ganesha is the presiding deity of Muladhara chakra. In the Indian spiritual tradition, Ganesha is worshiped for success before any important undertaking. In Hindu religion the form of Ganesha or the form of any deity is not only attractive and fascinating, but has a profound symbolic meaning. The rational mind is often unable to comprehend the subtle spiritual truths and the practical teachings that lie behind these images. Ganesha is depicted as having a human body with an elephant's head, a strange combination indeed, but the underlining meaning for this symbolic image is very interesting and hints to great truths. An elephant has big ears, a long trunk and very small eyes if compared to the rest of body. The elephant's long trunk symbolizes the importance of breath control, while it's huge, flappy ears represent the receptive attitude necessary to absorb valuable knowledge and the small eyes indicate keen observation. Let's see how these three factors relate to our own spiritual journey.
Big ears highlight the need to listen more. To achieve real success in life, we need to talk much less and listen a lot more, but there is a further step required, as whatever one imbibes by listening more, can be termed as learning, but true wisdom dawns only when actual Truth is revealed and experienced in deep meditation.
Once we have stilled the mind, we need to listen to the divine sound, the continuous primeval vibration that resounds in the outer and inner universe. All our life we have been suffocating this vital sound with the constant rattling noise of worldly life, deafening music and even boisterous thoughts, but the divine sound has always been there waiting to be heard.
We need to ponder daily the ancient scriptures and possibly have them explained directly from teacher, a realized Master, as spiritual truths cannot be properly imbibed by reading any book as random. Every day new volumes are printed describing all kinds of transcendental experiences. Most people regard the spiritual arena as an open forum to show off their own fantasies, as they perceive it like a place without rules, where one is free to indulge in one's own private reveries.
It is true that spiritual experiences are highly personal and may differ from one person to another, however, choosing the spiritual path involves a lot of discrimination, inner understanding and determined effort. Self-realization is the ultimate goal for everyone, but it is not an easy task, although the benefits far outweigh any effort required. We cannot expect immediate results not seek shortcuts avoiding efforts. We should choose the scriptural text that most appeals to us and meditate over one verse at a time, brooding over its deepest meanings, so that the most profound inner truths may be revealed to us. All the ancient scriptures, the Bible, the Gita, the Koran or the Torah contain the distilled wisdom of the ages.
Energizing the Body
Ganesha's long trunk represents the importance of deep breathing. The modern world has only recently discovered the immense benefits to the entire physical and mental health spectrum of deep, rhythmic breathing. The fitness industry has been revolutionized by this "new discovery" and hundreds of new methods are being taught which incorporate this technique rather than strenuous physical exercises to keep the body and mind fit and active, yet in reality, this has already been discovered by the ancient sages of all religions thousands of years ago. Every scientific meditation technique incorporates this deep breathing, which floods the brain and the blood cells with the necessary oxygen and gives instant relaxation to the mind. Every serious spiritual aspirant needs to incorporate deep breathing into his or her daily routine.
Observing the Mind
Ganesha's small eyes represent keen, precise observation. We need to focus our attention on the workings of our own mind, watch how it runs here and there, never immobile, a continuous flow of unceasing thoughts. Our goal is to eventually still that turbulent flow of thoughts, focusing our mind, first on fewer and fewer thoughts till we are able to keep out attention concentrated on only one thought. In meditation, we try to still the mind, bringing it from one thought to the complete cessation of all thoughts. It is only in absolute silence that we can hear the divine sound, enabling us to take control of this chakra and then to move on to the higher centres.
Two sense organs are regulated by the Muladhara chakra, the anus and the nose; both are associated with smell; which is the quality of the earth element. These sense organs are regulated through the simple technique of concentrating in this centre.
Source: The Universe Within - The Journey Through The Chakras, Pages: 29-36, Chapter 3