SPP: Could you please first explain a little bit about what it is you do? I know you have your own practice and a lot of people are unaware of what you are doing. So I was hoping you could let the general public know.
Dr. Judith: Well basically I travel the world speaking workshops and giving lectures and talks. I used to do private practice and healing and I do a little bit of that when I’m home, but because I’m not really home enough for any kind of regular sessions I let that go about five years ago. I take my healing work into teaching. I train psychotherapist, yoga teachers, body workers, average people just on their own healing journey. In the use of the Chakra System automatic therapy, yoga, psychology, and global transformation.
SPP: I was kind of hoping you could explain what the Chakra System is, actually what all of those are the Chakra System, Semitic Therapy and Bioenergetic. I’ve read about it online and I wasn’t familiar, I still don’t consider myself at all very knowledgeable in it.
Dr. Judith: I’m sure there’s people listening that are in the same boat.
Dr. Judith: So I’m happy to explain.
SPP: The Chakra System comes from the yoga tradition of India and it is a system of basically seven major energy centers that come along in midline of the body, that exist at the midline of the body, and they’re like vortices that incorporate external energy on the inside. Sort of like a power plant, a solar power plant will step down the solar energy and turn it into electricity, well the chakras will take the energy in the breast, in the food we eat in the conversations we have, in the light that we see, in the thoughts that we have, and it will incorporate it onto the inside of the body.
I say that the chakras are centers of organization for the reception, the assimilation and the expression of life force energy. The word chakra means wheel or disk and that’s a Sanskrit word, the ancient language of India. In describing it as a wheel it’s like a whirlpool, it’s like a vortex of energy that pulls in energy from outside and expresses it from inside. There’s seven of those in a system that are arranged vertically along the spine from the first one at the very base of the spine and the seventh one at the crown.
So the first one is associated with the element birth and it’s at the base of the spine. It is associated with survival consciousness. So that’s our instincts it is about grounding and how we connect to the earth. So it’s health, prosperity, and making a living, all the things having to do with the physical world that we are anchored in, and that becomes our foundation for the whole system.
Then above that is the second chakra and that is in the area of the abdomen, the hips, the low back, the genitals. It has to do with sexuality, emotions, feelings, sensation and movement, and its element is water. So after we get grounded in the earth, essentially put our roots down in the earth, the next thing we have to do is water them. So the second chakra is how we move through life.
The third chakra is located in the solar plexus and that is related to the element of fire. So fire is our get up and go, our vitality, our power, our sparkle.
Then the fourth chakra is in the heart. The heart chakra is related to love, of course, and it’s the element air. So air relates to the breath as we breathe in and out, where does it go? It goes into the chest and lungs and into the heart. So the heart chakra is about how we relate to others.
The throat chakra is the next one it’s in the throat itself and it relates to the element sound. So the throat chakra’s all about communication.
The sixth chakra is often called the Brow Chakra, some people think of it as the third eye, and that relates to intuition, to seeing, to insight.
Then finally the seventh chakra at the crown is related to consciousness itself. The gateway to the beyond. Often and it’s access through meditation and quieting the mind and really becoming aware of your own awareness.
So when you put these seven chakras together in a system you find that it creates a very elegant and profound formula for wholeness.
SPP: I was trying to process it because it’s definitely different from anything that we, especially in the western world, kind of learn about or hear about anything like that.
Dr. Judith: Yes except that it’s really become very popular in the west. I mean chakras are almost a household word in the west.
Dr. Judith: Most people use oh you’ve got a third chakra issue there, or gee I’m really coming from my fourth chakra here. They may not have a deep understanding of it but they’ve heard the word bandied about. I’ve seen it in Time Magazine and I’ve heard it on the news, I’ve heard it on television that means it’s becoming a household word.
SPP: As you mentioned it’s becoming a household word but I’m sure when you got into it, it was lesser known. How did you get into studying it and where you’ve gotten to today?
Dr. Judith: Yeah I began really back in 1975 when I first discovered the word and there was almost nothing on it at the time. So I had to go back into the ancient literature and kind of decode some of that and read what they were saying. Gradually my book, well my first book came out in 1987 so that was 24 years ago. That started kind of putting the chakras on the map. The understanding of it has changed a great deal from being ancient esoteric philosophy to something that is applied by doctors and chiropractors and acupuncturists and therapist, almost everyone in the healing field has at least a conversant knowledge of the chakras. So it really has a wide application.
What fascinated me was that I really saw it as a system for wholeness not just a way to climb up and go to some other worldly place through meditation, even though that is one aspect of it, but also a way to integrate and become really grounded and practical. So it’s really a very practical spirituality.
SPP: You mentioned different forms of healing is there certain forms of healing that help different chakras or do you focus on certain areas with different forms of healings? How does this work I mean pardon my ignorance on this?
Dr. Judith: Yeah this is a system like a lens through which you can look at the body and the mind and the psyche. So the beauty of it is it can be used by any form of healing. So there isn’t a particular form to me that’s better than another. I mean an acupuncturist that works with energy and meridians can look at how it goes through the chakras as well as anything else. A chiropractor can look at what parts of your spine are out of alignment and what chakra does that part of the spine relate to. Psychologist can look at it as developmental stages of childhood and look at where you were wounded or had difficulty and see how that would impact your behavior and your believe system in that chakra.
So the beauty of it to me is that it’s not bound to a particular system, it’s not bound to a particular religion or a healing system. It can be used by all of them. So I look at the Chakra System as the architecture of the soul in the same way that the bones is like the basic architecture of the body.
SPP: I found your work through, I’ll randomly just search Amazon through some things that I’m interested in, and I’m very interested in kind of eastern medicine and things like that. Because I think oftentimes we get into this idea of that western medicine’s the only kind that heals and I disagree with that. So I found your book “Eastern Body Western Mind” and instantly just by the title I was interested in it. Can you kind of explain the basis behind that book and kind of what you found while doing the research for it?
Dr. Judith: Yes. The basis of that book the subtitle is psychology and the Chakra System is a path to the self. So I really map the eastern system of those chakras onto western psychology. In that book I look at the developmental stages of childhood and how they map onto the Chakra System. In other words, our first year of life is primarily spent trying to get our body to work. We’re trying to learn to hold our head up, how to eat and digest food, how to be able to grasp something, how to be able to crawl and to walk, to develop muscles that your body triples its weight in the first year.
So that’s our primary orientation. How do we make this body work and how do we get along in the physical world where things have edges and boundaries and gravity and all of that. And the second chakra overlaps the first chakra a little bit and goes into the emotional development. So this is a time when we are communicating emotionally. We don’t have words yet but we just go wah when we want something. So we are also learning to move through life at that time, that’s the second chakra.
Then as we come into our terrible twos and threes we come into our will, the me, me mine and mine, that’s the development of the third chakra. As we get a little more mature and we start to go to school or have brothers and sisters or play with kids in the neighborhood we’re coming into the whole social sphere, which is the heart chakra. Then as we get a little more advanced in school we learn to read and write we’re entering the fifth chakra, which is really all about learning. Then as we come into adolescence we come into our sixth charka and the crown chakra is we come into our early adulthoods saying “Well what’s the is world all about and how do I fit into it and what do I believe?”
So that’s a very rough journey and I charted that. Then I look at all the things that’s happened to children during these stages and how that affects their chakra balance their make ups and that alterian parent will impact your power charka, your third charka. Not being loved enough would influence your heart chakra. So I look at this and I map them together and then write about ways to heal that and understand it.
SPP: For people who are interested by the Chakra System and all this, where can you point them? You’ve written a few books and I believe you’ve put out audio on like the Beginner’s Guide to Chakras. Where would you point people that are just getting interested in the Chakra System?
Dr. Judith: Well one way that’s a really good introduction is my 30 minute video The Illuminated Chakras. It is a beautiful animated art journey through as if you could see the inside of a chakra as what it looks like. It’s not about yoga poses and it’s not about how to do healing, but it’s an introduction to the Chakra System, in general, what each chakra means, where it’s located, and yet it’s done with beautiful animated art. So it’s actually an opened eyed meditation through the chakras that you can watch again and again. So I always suggest that as an orientation a beginning, because people watch than and they go oh I get it. In that 30 minutes I got what it is.
Then “Wheels of Life” the first book I wrote is really a good, if you want to a good solid introduction to the philosophy of the chakras, their location, their meaning, a little bit of practice exercises for each one and you want to start to work with it that’s a good place. If you want to take it into the world where the world is in terms of chakras I say that we’re going from third chakra to the fourth chakra as an organizing principle in our culture form the love of power to the power of love that would be waking the global heart. That charts human history and its development along the lines of the chakras and shows how we are actually growing up and maturing through this process of raising our energy up the chakra column.
SPP: In your book “Eastern Body Western Mind” you had a quote that said “The Chakra System is every bit as valid as any psychological theory.” I know a lot of people are going to question that initially. Where does the validity come from?
Dr. Judith: There aren’t many scientific experiments that are being done from curly in photographer to the photographs and studies of the aura and the subtle field to electrodes on the body that get activated when people talk about certain issues and it lights up on different chakras. So there aren’t many scientific studies being done. My work has not focused on that as much because that doesn’t tell anybody how to use them it just tells them whether they exist. I’m more interested in working with people “Say alright I already get this. I want to know how to use it.” The validity is that this system is much older than any psychological theory we have. This system goes back thousands of years and certainly $1500 years when the first books were written. This has been used and tested by yogis and masters and spiritual teachers for, like I say, centuries and many of our psychological theories don’t go much past Freud. So we have a time tested. It also maps onto the body which many psychological theories do not. So this is a body based psychological orientation.
SPP: So because it’s body based I believe that yoga’s probably a big part of this, is this correct?
Dr. Judith: Well yeah. The Chakra System originated in the yoga tradition so in many ways the yoga postures are ways of bringing the body into better alignment so that the energy flows the chakras more easily and more fully.
SPP: Obviously recently yoga has become more and more popular, especially even as just every day exercise for people. Is there anywhere that you can point people that links the yoga and Chakra System?
Dr. Judith: Oh yeah well my work certainly does and many, many yoga teachers are teaching the chakras along with their yoga classes. Anusara yoga, which is one of the more popular forms of yoga in the world today founded by John Friend, he also works with the Chakra System in his teaching. So most people that have been practicing yoga for awhile come across the Chakra System and are interested in learning it and bringing it into their teaching, into their practice.
They realize that part of what they’re doing is they’re stretching and opening their muscles, they’re aligning their body or developing strength is they are enhancing the flow of, in yoga we call it the chakie energy, which is the life force enhancing the flow of the life force through their body. As they do that they’re also enhancing their consciousness, their awareness.
SPP: I wanted to ask you real quick about mediation. I know that you mentioned it earlier. It’s something that I try to do but it’s difficult and I think a lot of people want to make it a goal and don’t end up doing it. Could you tell us how meditation fits into your practice and what you teach people? Also give a quick outline or a guide on how to mediate for a beginner.
Dr. Judith: Well meditation is really it’s a balm of the soul. It’s like a sense of deep, deep rest. We can’t function very well if we go too many days without getting enough sleep. In the same way meditation clears the mind, it brings it into deep rest, and in the process of the clearing and that deepening one begins to access a different level of consciousness than our normal waking trying to figure it out type of consciousness.
For instance, when I meditate ideals will pop into my mind. Instructions from kind of guidance, if you will, will pop into my mind. It might be as simple as oh remember to call someone or it might be a whole inspiration for a chapter that I’m writing or for a book that I’m writing or a project. So it’s a way to open your mind to a much deeper level of consciousness where we can access really a kind of what the master’s say is a nondual consciousness where we are just pure awareness of everything around us. In that meditation there is a sense of letting go, so it enhances our health. The receptive sites and the cells of the body get to let go of toxins. We deepen our breath.
There’s many, many ways to meditate. There is uttering of montro, which is a simple sound like IM or OEM. One can meditate on a candle flame and just keep your gaze focused on the candle. One of the most common is to meditate on the breath and just take your awareness and watch the breath coming in fully and out and just continue to watch the breath as you sit. Anytime that you notice your mind wandering from the breath, which it will do. Just simply bring the mind back to the breath again and over a process of 15, 20 minutes, half hour, if you continually do that you will find that you enter a much deeper state of consciousness, a deeper state of relaxation, and that you come out of it feeling very refreshed. So it’s a state of deep rest as well. It’s a state of renewal
SPP: That’s great I think we all need a little renewal every now and again.
Dr. Judith: Yes we do. Yes in this culture we’re so go, go, go all the time. We really need to stop and think about what we’re doing in this world and meditation is the way to stop and access something. The other thing is as we meditate more we find we need less. We need less things, we need less constant activity. We’re more just self sufficient in ourselves, we’re happier, we’re more relaxed. We need less food, less coffee. So it’s really something that helps evolve our consciousness.
SPP: Okay. I have one last question for you. It’s kind of vague but I know you do a ton of speaking engagements, like you said, workshops all over the world. We enjoy interviewing people such as yourself because you interact with others on a daily basis. So I wanted to see when you go speak with people what do you see is the most common thing that they from it from working with you and kind of what is the Number 1 idea or method or goal that you try to accomplish or pass along in these workshops?
Dr. Judith: Oh that’s a great question. Well I would say there’s a couple of things. One thing is they get a deeper contact with their own body. It’s like they come back home to themselves. They say “Oh my God id didn’t realize I was so disconnected from myself. I feel more connected now. I know more who I am. I feel like I’m occupying my body.” So that is one.
The other is I would say they get a sense of possibility. When I do my lectures on the global heart here we are at a time in the world where if you read the news and you’re up on anything it can be pretty scary as to where we’re going in global warming, environmental destruction, and peak food and peak oil, and possible wars, and on and on. We could get pretty discouraged. What I really show is that we are in a process of evolution that is taking us through a Rite of Passage right now on the planet. That Rite of Passage is our initiation to a higher level of consciousness where we operate, as I say from the heart rather than from the third chakra we operate from love rather than power. So people go away without with the a sense of hope and a sense of possibility of what we’re becoming as human beings on our planet at this time.
SPP: That’s we all we had. I did want to ask you could you let our listeners know where they can find you and your resources and things like that if they want to do kind of further research into this area?
Dr. Judith: Yes my central Web site is www.sacredcenters.com. There’s free articles and blogs, I write blogs every week that we can download about the world situation and about the Chakra System. You can order any of my books you can also reach me through there if you need to.
SPP: Great. All right. Well again thank you so much for being on the show. Dr. Judith: Thanks for your great questions.
SPP: All right thanks again. Have a good day.
Dr. Judith: Bye-bye.