“We have five senses in which we glory and which we recognize and celebrate, senses that constitute the sensible world for us. But there are other senses — secret senses, sixth senses, if you will — equally vital, but unrecognized, and unlauded.” ~ Oliver Sacks
Trust Your Intuition
Intuition is one of our ‘unlauded’ senses. By definition, intuition is our ability to know something without any conscious reasoning behind it. The third eye chakra is believed to be a connection to the spirit, a god-knowledge if you will, that guides us when available information and mental reasoning have come up empty.
This is the penultimate article in our Guide to the Chakras. So far we have journeyed through our security and grounding, our creativity and who we really are, our personal power and our unconditional love and communication. Now we seek deeper, more spiritual knowledge through our Ajna, or third eye chakra.
Third Eye Chakra Fast Facts
|Position:||Just above where the eyebrows meet|
|Gemstones:||Lapis Lazuli, Azurite, Sugilite|
|Essential Oils:||Frankincense, Holy Basil, Patchouli|
|Yoga Poses:||Downward Facing Dog, Lotus Pose, Crow Pose|
Overview of Ajna
The dark blue chakra is called Ajna which means ‘command’. It is positioned on the forehead, about a centimeter above the center of the eyebrows, and governs our ability to see not only what is in plain sight but to see what is not. The third eye chakra has a new-age association with ESP and psychic abilities. In yogic traditions a healthy third eye chakra enables us to step beyond the mind and its wants and demands and into the realm of universal knowledge and wisdom.
When Ajna is Imbalanced
Below you’ll find some of the symptoms of a third eye chakra imbalance. When the third eye chakra is strong we are able to see things as they truly are. We combine equally our gathered information with our intuition to make excellent decisions. This is more than the gut feeling of the Manipura Chakra, this is a constant connection between body, mind and spirit.
If the third eye chakra is overactive then we may feel overwhelmed with too much intuitive interaction. It may feel like a mental radio is playing in our heads and we’re unable to turn the volume down. We may feel hypersensitive, we may be experiencing strong, vivid, powerful or upsetting dreams. We may feel spaced out or disconnected from reality.
If the third eye chakra is underactive we’re unable to go with, or even feel our intuition. We are left only with the facts as we see them before us. We experience self-doubt because we know we should be able to feel which decision to make but we’re unable to do so. Chronic third eye blocks cause skepticism and narrow mindedness.
Physical symptoms of an imbalanced third eye chakra involve any problems arising within the skull: eye problems, headaches, migraines, brain conditions, sleep disorders, endocrine imbalances, and issues with the pituitary gland, the pineal gland and the hypothalamus. A chakra imbalance can occur at any time, it is a normal part of the flux in our personal energies. Paying attention to your energy levels and taking action to level them out can become part of your wellbeing routine.
Exercising the Third Eye Chakra
If you think you may have a chakra imbalance you can take steps to restore the energy flow yourself. Below you will find some activities we’ve compiled that you can try to help you get in touch with your third eye chakra. Refer back to the Fast Facts section and you’ll see that there are plenty of ways to work with your third eye chakra, try modifying the previous chakra exercises too.
1. Yantra Meditation
A yantra is a geometric design used to invoke a meditative state. Each chakra has a yantra and the one representing the Ajna Chakra is a circle, flanked by two petals. The petals are representative of the pingala and the ida nadi channels that end their journey at the third eye chakra. Inside the circle is an inverted triangle and the OM symbol. Most third eye yantras also depict a crescent moon and a dot or ‘bindu’.
To meditate on a Yantra: Allow your eyes to rest in the centre of the yantra and find the bindu. Relax your gaze so that you are able to take in the entire yantra with your vision. This may take time and patience to do, but is well worth it. The key here to relax your gaze and let the image fill your senses. After a few minutes close your eyes. You may still be able to see the yantra imprinted on mind’s eye. Rest well afterwards.
2. Chanting OM
Pronounced “AUM” [awe-oo-mmm], the OM chant often used at the beginning and end of a yoga class is a powerful vibrational and symbolic mantra. It’s exact meaning isn’t clear and different thought-leaders and religions have their interpretation of OM but if we think of OM as the seed of all creation, we’re on the right lines.
Chanting OM clears negative energies and balances us which is why it is used to begin and end yoga practices.
Sit in lotus or cross-legged pose and take a deep breath in. As you exhale, start vocalising OM [awe-ooo-mmm] throughout the natural length of your exhale. Breathe in deeply and repeat for a few minutes. Always rest in Savasana afterwards.
You’ll find yourself gravitating toward a certain pitch and rhythm that is right for you. If you practice OM in class don’t be a sheep and breathe and pitch along with everyone else, settle into your own note and your own rhythm.
3. Vibrational Relaxation
Everything in the universe is vibrating. Countless particles are buzzing around in even the most solid, densest things we can think of. That vibration is pure energy clustered together to form everything from air, tables and planets to cups of coffee, and each one of these things has a vibrational frequency that distinguishes it from everything else.
Musical notes have vibrational frequencies that are with the vibrational energy of each chakra and the associated musical note for the third eye chakra is “A”. Listening (preferably with headphones) to vibrationally attuned sounds during meditation can really help to balance and open the Ajna Chakra. Try this one or find others on YouTube etc.