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VII. Applying the chakra system as a working map of human development.

The physical or emotional pain that you are feeling, or the type of life struggle that you keep coming back to, can indicate the chakra level where you got stuck or where some trauma occurred.

So here they are, these chakras: lined up along your spine and into your skull from your perineum to just above your head. They overlie your body parts and organ systems and they relate to them. The chakras are also associated with different ages and stages of life-development, and though different systems use different timelines, we always start at the root - our first experience of being a human in a body here on Earth.

Actually, I think that we come into this life all heart, looking for love, expecting love, and overflowing with love to give. This is how we get anchored in the body - we give love and we receive love and nurture.

But what if we don’t get that?

Because, sadly, many of us in this world don’t get this. Some lucky ones do. Or at least they get it partway. Enough to make a good base with.

When we don’t get met with love and nurture and the message, given through actions, that our bodies matter and get what they need when they need it, we start to believe that we don’t have the right to be here in the exact body that we have and to have all of our needs for survival met. We go into a frantic nervous system response that can last a whole lifetime - never being sure if we are going to make it, day to day, let alone think of thriving.

Maybe you are just carrying a minor version of this patterning. Many of us are. A mild belief that we don’t have the right to be here in the exact body that we have and get our needs for food and love and connection met. That somehow we have to change ourselves into something else to deserve this, or prove our worthiness, or stop being this or that so that we can get love.

I end up saying exactly this over and over again to people are in an abusive situation from the get-go: like, born into a parent relationship that is on the rocks already, born to a parent who can’t connect on a deeply physical-emotional level. What I end up saying to the person/their body is: You have the right to be here in the exact body that you have for no reason - there isn’t anything special that you need to do to deserve being here with all of your basic needs met, there isn’t anything special that you have to do to get love. Because on some really deep level, they don’t know this. Love in their family has always been an exchange based on merit and something you have to earn.

But that’s not how love actually works. We are born into this world, into a family, and we are expecting it to just be there, this love without reason. When this is lacking, it complicates our ability to know that we are safe, met, seen, and accepted. The repercussions are huge.

From the root, where we learn what the deal is in this lifetime for having basic body needs for survival met, and basic safety, we move on to the sacral chakra, which is a wee bit more complicated.

The sacral is where we learn about emotional safety, among other things. Is it ok for you to have the feelings that you are having when you are having them? Or do you have to shut some of them down because you lose your parents’ love, or change them in some way, or make them other than what they genuinely are?

If we grow up in an emotionally competent environment - and by this I mean that people have feelings and that that’s not just ok, but welcomed and worked with by all involved, not just slammed repeatedly shut - then we become adults who have competent boundaries and are more likely to have healthy intimate relationships.

It is really, really rare in our current western reality that people grow up emotionally competent. I’d like to think that this is changing, but I’m sadly not certain that this is so on a large scale. Some societal trends are helping to support this change, though, and I’m heartened by these things that I see: consent culture, people from various parts of the population speaking out about their experiences of the predominant culture and their family lives, Black lives matter, Idle No More, Me Too, etc...

All of this being a possibly round about way of saying: if your belly and your digestion are continually feeling off and achy and sluggish, or you have chronic lung conditions, or your knees give out all the time, or if you’ve broken your ankle three times, these things tell me something about where we need to look to start untangling your problematic belief systems about yourself.

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