Written by Shabad Kaur and Shiva Singh (date unknown)
“By thinking and thinking nothing happens…Though I may think a thousand times.” ~Guru Nanak, Japji Sahib
You can think all day about being motivated, but what does that accomplish? Probably not much. The Manipura (3rd Chakra) is located in the space between the navel and the Solar Plexus, and acts as the seat of the sense of self and the center of gravity of the physical body. If balanced, the physical self will be radiant and the mental body will resist negativity!
Roughly translated, the Manipura is the ‘Jeweled City.’ The umbilicus—the original source of our sustenance in the womb—is located here. It’s our energetic power source when we spark the flame of this solar center. As our body temple was first formed, the umbilical cord was connected to the lotus of the placenta, which created our foundation of vitality—a cellular intelligence to generate the spark that creates movement in life. In fact, it essentially manifested you!
“Third Chakra is the navel point. Navel point is gain and loss, yes and no, me and you. Here lies the pure energy; also duality and Infinity are there. When you talk from Third Chakra, you talk.” ~Yogi Bhajan
Motivational speakers love to call it “fire in the belly” to light a fire of inspiration within oneself. As Yogis, we’re activating the Manipura, experiencing a powerful sense of ambition or determination. It supports and activates our will to ever move forward, providing emotional stamina, vigor, and an eagerness to try again, and to Keep Up with an attitude of gratitude.
Sharing that space with the Manipura is the Samana Vayu. There’s a strong relationship between Prana/Air and how it literally feeds the fire at the 3rd Chakra. The movement of the area between the diaphragm and navel is all about the breath! It’s the breath that gets you going. Like the flames in a fire, the 3rd Chakra energy has an eager upward movement. Seated at the navel, the balancing Samana Vayu, is at the meeting point between Prana and Apana Vayus, uniting these energies. Consider this: by matching the length and depth of each inhalation and exhalation, Prana meets Apana, thereby helping to balance Samana and 3rd Chakra.
With a strong 3rd Chakra, our visions will manifest and we walk forward in Cherdi Kala, ever-rising spirit. All it might take is a spark of the breath and maybe some leg lifts!
Here are a few yogic suggestions to help activate the 3rd Chakra and aid your action towards your goals:
Action #1: Practice Breath of Fire. Moving the navel and diaphragm brings balance to support your intentions, to generate that inner heat. Taking in that which we need and discarding that which does not serve us helps to set the balance that arises with Samana Vayu.
Action #2: Address Emotional Health. Each day for 40 days reflect on what aspects of your life need balance. Meditate at the 3rd Chakra on what nourishes you and also release what no longer serves you. This is a way to work on your Samana Vayu and Manipura Chakra.
Action #3: Practice Archer Pose: Archer Pose is excellent for building courage, bringing a heightened awareness of what needs to be done and envisioning ways to move forward.