Opening the Heart Center

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When Yogi Bhajan came to the West and Los Angeles in 1969, the strengthening and balancing of the navel point was one of the main focuses of his classes. His yogic message was that in order to get and stay in the heart center we first had to cultivate a powerful and stable base or the "lower triangle." The lower triangle is the lower three chakras - root, sex and navel. The major theme of my first book Transitions of the Heart-Centered World (1988) is how to build the lower triangle as a base for moving into the heart chakra.

It is interesting to look back and observe the different spiritual paths in the 70's and 80's. The message of the flower children of the 60's was "All we need is love." Yogi Bhajan attracted many of these flower children to his classes. We certainly need more love. The question is how do we get it? Yogi Bhajan essentially said, "If you want love, you have to prepare your mind and body to give and receive it." So while other paths were concentrating on opening the upper chakras to receive universal Love, Yogi Bhajan was teaching us breath of fire, stretch pose and other strenuous abdominal exercises. There was no time to sit around and love each other.

We were instructed to get up at 3:00am, take a cold shower and do 2 1/2 hours of Kundalini yoga and meditation. And then there was the rest of the program, which included seva (selfless service), devotional chanting, and teaching, setting up restaurants and ashrams. Who had time for love? We were exhausted!

Yogi Bhajan is a "Saturn" teacher. He teaches through discipline, lessons and committed action. We don't contemplate our navels. We pump them until they are activated and our internal energy moves spontaneously and dynamically.

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The Chakra Checklist

The Chakra Checklist

The chakras are described as being aligned in an ascending column from the base of the back to the top of the head. New Age practices frequently associate each chakra with a particular color.

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