The Fifth Chakra, often referred to as the Throat Chakra or the Vishuddha Chakra, is positioned at the neck region and it has sixteen petals corresponding to the Sanskrit vowels.
Vishuddha is associated with the faculty of higher discrimination, between choosing what is right and wrong, and it is associated with creativity and self-expression. It is known as the ‘poison and nectar’ centre, closely related to the Bindu chakra, and the secret of immortality is said to reside there. When Vishuddha is closed, we undergo decay and death. When it is open, negative experience is transformed into wisdom and learning.
Vishuddha is said to contain Jnana Shakti.
The Bija mantra for Vishuddha is हं haṃ. The petals correspond to the following sixteen vowels:
|अ a||आ ā||इ i||ई ī||उ u||ऊ ū||ऋ ṛ||ॠ ṝ|
|ऌ ḷ||ॡ ḹ||ए e||ऐ ai||ओ o||औ au||अः ḥ||अं ṃ|
NB: Some vowels listed above do not strictly correspond to the grammatical definition of a Sanskrit vowel, specifically ॡ ḹ, अः ḥ, and अं ṃ.
It is associated with the following:
- Deities: Ambara, Sadashiva and Shakini
- Element: Aether (Akasha)
- Color: Blue
- Animal: Elephant
- Body Parts: Thyroid gland, Ears, Neck, eyes, voice box, thyroid, parathyroid, sinuses
- Planet: Jupiter & Mercury
In Kundalini yoga, Vishuddha can be opened and balanced through practices including asanas (such as shoulder-stand), pranayama, jalandhara bandha (throat lock), and Khecarī mudrā.
Vishuddha is often associated with the thyroid gland in the human endocrine system. This gland is in the neck, and produces hormones essential for growth and maturation.
Western occultists make various differing kabbalistic associations with Vishuddha. Some associate it with the hidden sephirah Da’at, where ‘wisdom’ and ‘understanding’ are balanced in the supernal realm by the aspect of ‘knowledge’, a tangible idea, which is then expressed, leading to the act of the Creation ( however, Swami Satyananda associates the act of the creation with the Bindu chakra ).
Others associate it with the sephirah Chesed and Geburah, mercy and strength, which are sephirah intimately associated with morality, and the concept that both expansion, as expressed by Chesed, and limitation, as expressed by Geburah, are necessary for the creation of individual beings. In terms of ethics, this is expressed by the yamas and niyamas ( do’s and do nots ) of yoga.
When energy is not flowing freely from this chakra it is difficult to speak your truth and find your voice. I have noticed when people have blocked energy here they clear their throat, there is a tightness and sometimes their voice changes when they are not completely comfortable talking about something. There may be lumps or tumors on the vocal chords, troubles swallowing, thyroid disease and problems with the jaw and neck. There may be issues with tact and timing, expression and communication and finding a balance between speaking and listening. Other challenges include problems with the parathyroid (therefore calcium imbalances), ears, atlas, colds, sinus allergies etc. A person who talks very softly is apt to be more yin. Loud and boisterous people are more yang. Blockage of the chakra inhibits self expression.
This chakra is fed by opening the lines of communication of your thoughts and feelings, being more creative, speaking your truth, releasing past emotions, deep breathing exercises, and all types of healing work.
Pay attention to all of the thoughts that you don’t express. How often do you “bite your tongue”? Learn that it is OK to speak your mind. Most people do not speak their truth because they don’t want to appear foolish. At this chakra you are able to speak words that come directly from the heart and Spirit, and most people may lack the courage or conviction to express their innermost beliefs.
Crystals and Gems
Crystals and/or gem elixirs which may help balance out the fifth chakra: Adamite, Amazonite, Apatite, Aquamarine, Aqua Aura, Azurite, Celestite, Cerussite, Chrysocholla, Danburite (all chakras), Diamonds (all chakras), Dioptase, Eilat Stone, Kyanite, Labradorite, Lapis Lazuli, Larimar, Mother of Pearl, Onyx (Blue), Quartz (Blue), Quartz-Clear (all chakras), Quartz (Rutilated), Sapphire, Silica (Gem), Smithsonite, Sodalite, Spinel, Stilbite, Tanzanite, Topaz (Blue), Tourmaline (Blue-Indicolite), Turquoise, Zircon (all chakras).
Jupiter and Mercury are the co-rulers of this chakra. People with this chakra open are very persuasive and charismatic; socially, they can be great orators, teachers, speakers, and writers. They have a natural ability to sense what people are thinking, and can put it into words. How many times have you listened to someone, and later realized that they were able to put into words ideas that you’re only able to think about? When this chakra functions you are able to “speak your personal truth with conviction”. This is exactly what the ancients referred to as “the power of the Word”. Once you are able to speak your own Truth, then you are able to create your own reality through the power of your words. Use “reaffirmations”, like, “I am strong, powerful, wealthy, loving, etc.” When this chakra is not operating smoothly, you tend to limit your conversations to superficial concerns, and when someone asks you for a serious opinion, you may respond with, “If you really want to know…”.