One of the issues that I see most often when working with sensitive men, women and children is the energetic issue of feeling safe enough to inhabit their own bodies. It is also true that they do not feel that they deserve to be here on earth. In other words, they aren’t entirely living here.
How this imbalance often shows up is in the emotional body as anxiety and a general feeling of being ungrounded.
The first chakra in our bodies is located at the base of the spine. This chakra is our “root” chakra. The sanskrit name is Muladhara and it’s central issue is related to survival.
Our chakras, or energy centers in the body (I work with a 12 chakra system), have certain inalienable rights that are linked with them. We often think of this first chakra as being connected to stability, grounding, physical health, prosperity and trust, but it also says something essential in our development- “I deserve to be here.”
The developmental stage connected with first chakra issues are linked to being in the womb to about 1 year old. This is the chakra of earth and the physical body. When we are in the womb, our physical body is forming. We are becoming a form. In utero, we are entirely dependent on our mother’s bodies- her form. If, for whatever reason, our mothers were anxious about being pregnant, anxious about our birth, or not particularly interested in being pregnant we can be deeply influenced as we develop. We may feel ambivalent about what is occurring on a cellular level. When this chakra is unbalanced, meaning developmentally there has been trauma from before one is born or from birth into one’s first year of life, issues manifest and centralize around the basic need of self preservation.
How this might look psychologically is being overly focused on our physical body and material world. The story of Goldilocks comes to mind: “Is is too warm or too hot?” “Is this too cold?” “I am always hungry or never hungry”, “I am afraid that I will never have enough money (read security).” One might also appear to be restless, spacy, perhaps underweight or have issues of anorexia. On the other hand, this chakra may show this kind of imbalance in the opposite direction of showing excessive characteristics such as heaviness, sluggishness, obesity, issues around hoarding, an overly focused energy around materialism, and even greed.
When I contemplate this expressions of an imbalanced 1st chakra, I do not need to just think of who might consult me for healing work. I think of our culture as a whole.
This disconnect from a healthy feeling of “I deserve to be here” might create the reality that we find ourselves in as a collective. If I don’t feel that I truly deserve to be here, I might not care about how I treat my environment. I might not see earth as a living, breathing body like my own. I might mistreat her or disregard her. I might not even trust her. I might not know what or when is enough. I don’t feel safe enough to be content with that I already have. I need more to feel safe. Landfills are full of things that we don’t need and probably never did. We might over fish our oceans until there is nothing left. We might see the financial bottom line as being more important than leaving our children an earth that they can inhabit.
When this first chakra is balanced, we can begin to feel safe being in our bodies and on Earth as our home- our natural Mother. We can also recognize when we are simply hungry and just fill that need, or find a sweater when we are cold.
What I notice in those whom I do healing work with is that their anxiety is decreased immediately. People often report feeling less disconnected from themselves. One woman whom I did healing sessions with stopped having the impulse to compulsively shop for things that she did not need for herself or her son. Another woman decided that she actually hoarded her money. Although she was always in fear of not having enough, she decided that it was time to start spending money to enjoy her life and not just hide it under her mattress for a “rainy day.”
I see the chakras as a kind of spiritual staircase. We have to start at the beginning. We cannot climb the spiritual ladder unless we have a solid ground underneath our feet. Without this trust in our bodies and our being here on the earth- spiritual development might even become dangerous. If we skip this basic step of “I deserve to be here” then spiritual practices can become a means of escaping earth. This isn’t the point of a spiritual life at all.
At some point, even when you reach the highest spiritual high, you need to come back down to earth and live your life. If one is not trusting of this life more anxiety occurs. As I always say, our symptoms are all gifts. They alert us to where we are no longer balanced and where healing is pointed to. Are we ever finished healing? No, I don’t think so. I believe that this why we are all here in the first place- to heal and then to help others heal in whatever ways we can.