The fourth chakra represents the unifying energy of love and compassion. Known as Anahata, the heart chakra is dedicated to overcoming separation and division. When the heart center is blocked, there is a sense of alienation from others. When the heart center is open and flowing, you feel connected at a deep level to all beings in your life.
The Law of Giving and Receiving governs the heart chakra. Love can take many different forms at different stages of life. The love of a child for his mother is different from a mother's love for her child. A friend's love is different from a passionate lover's love or the love of a student for his teacher. The common thread in each of these expressions of love is the impulse to unify—
to overcome separation. This is the nature of the heart.
The Law of Giving and Receiving as expressed through the fourth chakra establishes the principle that the heart is the organ that circulates love. The relationship between the physical heart and the emotional heart is more than metaphorical. Studies have shown that in patients with recent heart attacks, men who believe that their spouses love them suffer fewer complications and have better outcomes then men who are in conflicted marriages. People who perceive the world as hostile have a higher risk of premature heart attacks than those who feel the world is a nurturing place. Just the simple act of a cardiac nurse calling to check on the well-being of patients recently discharged from a coronary care unit can reduce the risk of rehospitalization.
Every act of giving is simultaneously an act of receiving. Each time you welcome a gift into your life you are providing the opportunity for someone to give. Just as a healthy physical heart receives blood from the periphery which it then oxygenates and pumps back out, your emotional heart stays healthy by receiving and giving love in all its forms.
The color of the fourth energy center is green. When flowing, it is the green of nourishment; when congested, it can be green with envy. It is associated with the element of air and the sense of touch.
The mantra that awakens the fourth chakra is Yum.
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