This is the centre or level of awareness where the world begins to become like one's own home. One becomes open to all experiences, whether good or bad. The stage of the world and life in general is regarded as the provider of experiences that lead to greater understanding. Instead of fighting with life, one begins to flow with the current of life. One ceases to continually avoid or ignore bad experiences or facets of life and seek good experiences. Instead there is the tendency to let things happen in the way that they must. The nectar and the poison are both consumed. Everything and everyone becomes magical. Instead of feeling neurotic and antagonistic towards the world and other people, one begins to relax and flow with all situations. One begins to tune in with other people.
More and more, one will see sense and intelligence behind all things and actions. This is the centre where all people and all things are seen as a cosmic whole, with everything working in harmony with everything else.
It is said that below vishuddhi it is possible to fall and lose one's level of harmony and understanding. At the level of vishuddhi and above, this possibility of fall no longer exists. It is the chakra that lies on the threshold of spiritual realization and higher knowledge. In the Shat Chakra Nirupana it says: "This chakra (vishuddhi) is the gateway to liberation for he who wishes to know the real meaning of yoga and whose senses are purified and controlled." (verse 30) It is said that a person who opens vishuddhi chakra knows all the scriptures without needing to read them. That is, a person at this level of understanding comprehends the meaning behind the scriptures through his own experience and intuition. He becomes compassionate, peaceful and full of bliss.
The vishuddhi chakra is symbolized by a purple lotus flower with sixteen petals. Traditionally, each of these petals is inscribed with one of the sixteen Sanskrit vowels - Am 3i, Aam 3if, Im f', Eemi, Um Uum Rim "^t Reem ^t Lrim cj, Lreem cj, Km Aim Om ^f, Aum M and Ah:. We have omitted these letters in our symbolic diagram of the chakra.
In the centre of the lotus flower is a white circle in which there is a drop of nectar; one drop among many drops that stream down from bindu to vishuddhi. In the drop is inscribed the bija (seed) mantra for the vishuddhi chakra - Ham Many traditional diagrams also portray a white elephant and various deities. We have omitted these for simplicity and also so that the diagram is not confined to one religious system. Most of the traditional deities have little symbolic value for most people outside India.
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