Philosophy of Yoga

How to Awaken the Solar Plexus Chakra – The Third of the Seven Chakras

Know your Solar Plexus Chakra, and learn how to awaken your inner strength. Learn Yoga poses and empowering exercise that you can practice at home.

What is Solar Plexus Chakra?

The Solar Plexus Chakra is the third of the Seven Chakras after the second Chakra – Sacral Chakra and the first Chakra – Root Chakra.

Once we bring stability by activating the Root Chakra and feel connected by healing the Sacral Chakra, we are now ready to expand beyond mere survival and emotional needs. With a strong feeling of stability and emotions, we start finding energy within us. And that energy is Solar Plexus Chakra.

The Solar Plexus Charka wants to rise. And so, it desires to discover our inner strength, willpower, and our purpose.  It makes us feel powerful.  Physically, it relates to metabolism, and psychologically, it means enthusiasm.

That is what Solar Plexus Chakra does.

What is Solar Plexus Chakra?

What is the power of Solar Plexus Chakra?

The Fire element of the third Chakra transforms the passive aspects of Earth and Water into dynamic energy and power. The Root and Sacral Chakras are passive that tend to flow downward. Fire, by contract, moves upward. And thus, this Chakra helps us get started and take action.

Balanced Solar Plexus Chakra makes us discover our inner strength. We feel compelling, energetic, and we are determined to take action. This Chakra is related to self-esteem, which brings depth to our will. The power of this Chakra is that it directs our lives towards what we love, and it ignites, challenges, and renews us.

What happens when we ignore Solar Plexus Chakra?

To ignore Solar Plexus Chakra means to deplete our vitality and energy. Our natural enthusiasm for activities dwindles, and we withdraw from life. We dwell on anger and self-criticism, which wears us further down.

Remember that the energy of the Solar Plexus is inter-connected with the two Chakras – Root (stability) and Sacral (connection). If we are unstable and disconnected, we drown the energy in Solar Plexus Chakra too.

Shame is the demon of the Solar Plexus Chakra as it counteracts the sense of self-esteem. It is a painful emotion that responds to a sense of failure to attain some ideal state. It generates a wish to hide, to disappear, or even to die.

Shame differs from Guilt.

Guilt involves a negative evaluation of specific behavior, not the entire self.  Guilt can be viewed as a more useful emotion motivating specific and corrective action, such as an apology or effort to undo the harm. Shame, on the other hand, can take away our self-esteem. Worse, to escape painful feelings of shame, we tend to defensively project blame and anger onto a convenient scapegoat.  We become a victim of our stories.

Why do we feel shame?

Some typical feelings that come in mind are:

  • “Why would people like me?”
  • “I am such a failure.”
  • “What have I achieved in life?”
  • “I do not respect myself.”

Why do these questions haunt us?

It is because we think that the purpose of life equals upward social mobility, such as establishing a career, accumulating wealth, having a perfect relationship, and so on. There is nothing wrong in thinking so. The only problem is when we seek power outwards instead of developing it within us. When we try to find strength outwards, we end up comparing our lives with others, and we feel worthless when we do not have what others have. And that is why we start feeling ashamed of our worth.

Here is a story of how detrimental comparison can be.

There was a king who communicated with plants. He planted trees, flowers, and roses, and once they grew, the best ones were chosen for the King’s private and exotic royal garden. So, every plant wanted to please the King so they could be part of his exclusive collection. That year, the King visited the garden to inspect the plants. Instead of beautiful and blossoming plants, he saw withering and dying trees, bushes, and flowers. He asked what happened to each plant. A rose said it failed because it could not be as high as a pine. A pine tree was low-spirited because it could not give grapes like a grapevine. And the vine was dying in sadness because it couldn’t blossom like the rose.

That is what comparison does to us. We fail to see the best in us, and we feel ashamed that we do not have something that others have (without realizing that the others might be fighting their war).

What is the mantra for dealing with Solar Plexus Chakra?

Redefine the concept of power: First, re-examine how you perceive power, and how you define your life based on that definition of power. Do you feel unaccomplished because you compare your experience with others? Or do you continuously discover the strength within yourself?

Stop being a victim: Stop seeing yourself as a victim and realize that lasting change comes from our efforts. If you blame others, your only hope for improvement comes hoping others will change – something you cannot control. When you take back responsibility, the changes come under the jurisdiction of your own will. Then you can truly heal from victimizing circumstances.

Take actions: What do you do to make something happen? Do you sit and make fervent wishes? Do you wait for circumstances to fall into place?  If you want to make any effective change, for that, you need to exercise will.

Instead of complaining and comparing, take actions, and move one step ahead – and that is your power.  

Here are some tips for awakening your Solar Plexus Chakra

Inner Strength is often associated with discipline and control, such as the will to exercise, go on a diet, or finish a project.

  • Observe your actions. Do you take action, or do you procrastinate?
  • Create a to-do-list. Plan, and follow the plan. Check if you complete all assigned tasks
  • Do something different. If you are sluggish, get moving. If you are hyperactive, be still. Break boring, repetitive patterns, and choose a challenge.
  • Avoid external validation: Stop seeking answers from those who do not know or care for you.
  • Learn anything new: Knowledge is power, and the more you learn, the more you feel the energy to do something. And that is power.
  • Avoid resistance: If you have started something, and you are stuck at some point, ask what you are so attached to this thing. Ask yourself why it is taking so much effort, what is missing that would make it flow smoothly.

In short, challenge yourself with new ideas, new tasks, and further actions. Overcoming difficulties increases strength and confidence. Give up being in your safe zone, and this power Chakra will awaken more quickly.

Recommended Simple Yoga Poses

To awaken the Solar Plexus Chakra, you need high-energy physical exercise that gets the heart pumping, the lungs breathing, and the blood racing through the body. For example, jogging, or any other cardio exercises. 15-20 rounds of Sun Salutation is the best yoga exercises for Solar Plexus Chakra. I personally like this exercise, which I call, Creating Sun. This pose is recommended by Dr. Judith in her book to energize our body. Try creating the Sun 15-20 times. It is fun, beautiful, and of course, energetic.

Since this Chakra is related to the digestive system, any yoga pose that increase the muscle tone over the stomach is good as it helps tone the digestive organs. Below are some of the recommended poses for Solar Plexus Chakra. Some of these are difficult poses. Nonetheless, with willpower, dedication, and strength, you will get there (remember this Chakra is all about finding strength and power)

Here is the magic of Color Yellow

Bija Mantra: RAM

Yellow is the color of sunshine, hope, and happiness. Bright yellow stands for freshness, clarity, energy, and optimism. Some studies show that the meaning of the color yellow can be warmth, cheerfulness, increased mental activity, increased muscle energy. The color yellow helps activate the memory, encourage communication, enhance vision, build confidence, and stimulate the nervous system.

Yellow is also an unstable color. If yellow is overused, it can have a disturbing effect. That is why, when one perceives himself as too powerful, he becomes arrogant, self-centered, and egomaniac. Too much yellow also causes people to become critical and demanding. Too little yellow causes feelings of isolation and fear, insecurity, and low self-esteem.

Empowering Exercise for Solar Plexus

Since this Chakra is associated with empowerment, here is a short Empowerment Meditation. We have used the same script, as suggested in the book Wheels of Life: A user’s guide to the Chakras by Dr. Judith.

Mantra for Solar Plexus Chakra

The Bīja Mantra (Seed Mantra) of the Solar Plexus Chakra is RĀM, the sound of spiritual awakening. Here is a video that we have found helpful.

And lastly, do not forget to save this positive Solar Plexus Chakra Affirmation

Summarizing Solar Plexus Chakra

Sanskrit NameManipura
MeaningLustrous Gem
LocationNavel to Solar Plexus
ElementFire
FunctionWill, Power, Assertiveness
Inner StateLaughter, joy, Anger
RightsRights to do, Rights to take action
Outer ManifestationPlasma
GlandsPancreas, Adrenals
Other Body partsDigestive Systems, Muscles
MalfunctionUlcers, Diabetes, Digestive Disorders
ColorYellow
SenseSight
Seed SoundRam
PetalsTen
FoodsStarches
GunaRajas

This is a part of the Chakra Series blog. We will write about different Chakras and what Asanas you can practice to stimulate them.

Stay tuned, and do not forget to subscribe if you want to receive our blogs or bi-weekly newsletter (stories influenced by the eastern philosophy) directly in the inbox.

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