In an ideal world, we would all have balanced chakras. Our root chakra would be happily spinning away, its abundance of energy flowing to the chakras above it. In other words, we would feel emotionally sound, clear on our purpose, and connected to both our intuition and creator. We would also be mentally sharp, physically energetic, and healthy.
However, the nature of duality means that there are unavoidable aspects to life; adversities challenge us on an energetic level, and before we know it our chakras are spinning out of whack, so to speak. The good news is that with proper care and attention we are more than capable of rebalancing ourselves.
Hindu Tantrism tells us that the second primary chakra is the sacral chakra. In the West, we tend to refer to the chakras based on their physical locations. Sanskrit has a slightly more decorative name: Svadhisthana. This name is made up of Sva, which means ‘one’s own’, and Adisthana, which means ‘home’ or ‘dwelling place’.
Where is the sacral chakra?
In the Sanskrit name, there is an inference to the physical body as a home. This makes sense when you consider that the sacral chakra is responsible for our creative, sexual and emotional energies – energies that correspond largely with our experience of the physical world.
The sacral chakra is located just above the sex organs, between the pubic bone and the navel. It may be apt to think of it as the ‘pleasure’ chakra, as when you feel passionate, sensual – or you feel physical pleasure – this chakra is fuelling it. There would be little procreation without the sacral chakra!
Svadhisthana encourages us to connect with our physical 3D reality, experiencing life in the richest of ways. A natural consequence of this is emotion, strong desires and drive toward creative action. We are creative beings, so the creative energy that the sacral chakra sparks are incredibly valuable.
Key characteristics of the sacral chakra
Svadhisthana is sometimes thought of as a black lotus but represented in the form of a central circle with six petals blossoming into an orange flower. The petals bear the Sanskrit letters ba, bha, ma, ya, ra, and la. In the center of the flower, you can see the ‘seed sound’ which is VAM.
The color associated with the sacral chakra is orange, and its element is water. The tattwa for the element of water is depicted as a silver crescent within the chakra symbol.
The parts of our bodies influenced by the sacral chakra are the genitals, abdomen, kidneys, and bladder. Our circulatory and reproductive systems are also affected by it, so blockages may result in the manifestation of issues with them.
What happens when the sacral chakra is imbalanced?
As with all the chakras, the sacral chakra and be underactive or overactive. However, it is also possible for you to experience symptoms of both. If your chakra happens to be under-active, this can manifest as lethargy, detachment, apathy, passivity, lack of libido, the need for certainty, and neurosis. You could also find it difficult to communicate your feelings and needs.
With an overactive sacral chakra, you may experience obsession, agitation, over-sensitivity, aggression, mania, and compulsiveness. You may find that you’re compelled to be dramatic, promiscuous, needy or codependent in relationships. Addictions are common for people whose sacral chakra is overactive.
On an emotional level, you may feel guilt and shame – especially relating to sex and the body. Creativity is likely to take a knock and you may feel stuck in this area.
On a physical level, reproductive problems are common. For both sexes a blockage can manifest as infertility; men may experience impotence, and for women, it may be menstrual problems. Lower back pain, stomach and kidney problems are more likely too.
How to balance the sacral chakra
You’ll know when your sacral chakra is functioning as it should be. You’ll feel grounded, emotionally balanced and overflowing with creativity. You’ll be happy with who you are, you’ll have a healthy sexual appetite and body image, and plenty of energy and passion for what matters to you.
You’ll feel warmth toward other people and you’re likely to be in good spirits with a fun sense of humor. Shame and guilt won’t even be on your radar, and life’s pleasures won’t stand a chance of passing you by.
If you’re one of the many people for whom this isn’t currently the case, there are many ways you can balance your sacral chakra. Positive affirmations and a regular yoga practice are great tools for this, as they help us to rebalance our whole energy system – so we always recommend those for chakra balancing. Here are some others we think will set you back on the right track:
Push through your comfort zone
If you’ve been feeling numb or apathetic for a while, try triggering your emotions with music, memories, and thoughts of what you are grateful for. People you love, experiences you have had… try to muster up some excitement for the future and gratitude for the present moment.
Sometimes all it takes is a reset or shift in perspective. Blocked chakras result in physical blockages, so you might just need a good laugh or a good cry! Go out of your way to find something that does the job. It could be dancing, running, or even jumping out of a plane. Perhaps it means nudging yourself to call that friend you’ve been neglecting.
This might feel uncomfortable, but do something you’ve never done before. The more creative that is, the better; and don’t be overly critical about potential results – it’s not a pass or fail game, and no talent is required. Be creative for the sake of creativity and exploration. Or try our journaling prompts to think outside the box.
Analyze yourself honestly
Sometimes it’s easy to cruise through life without much self-examination. But this is how we develop negative tendencies and blind spots. We may be affected by conditioning, trauma, culture – all manner of external influences. Consider your ideals and deep-seated beliefs. Are they rational, realistic… fair, even? Most importantly, are they holding you back in some way, or limiting your expression?
A good way to get to the root of your beliefs is to ask, “why do I think/feel that?” and repeat it for every answer you give until you can go no further with it. That’s your core belief. If you’re objective, you’ll be able to see how these beliefs or ideas are causing specific emotions and attitudes in you.
The next step is to watch for those emotional triggers. You have a chance to halt them before they take over and result in action – or inaction! You’ll soon be able to see the cause of your communication problems, addictions, and darker feelings. It’s very liberating indeed to trace the roots of your issues and move past the psychological and emotional blockages. You’ll be glad you put the work in!
Balance your chakra with crystals and essential oils
Crystals and essential oils are very ‘3D’, physical products from nature. Not only are they beautiful to look at or smell, but they also give off powerful energy. When used in the right way, the results can be profound. If you’ve ever had a crystal healing or an aromatherapy massage, you have surely felt the benefits.
Crystals that are great for balancing an underactive sacral chakra are carnelian and orange calcite, amber, jasper, and moonstone. Crystals with opposite colors may soothe overactive sacral chakras. Visit a crystal healer or use the appropriate stones to balance your chakra by placing them on that area, and meditating with pure intentions to heal.
Essential oils are a great tool too. Try ginger, jasmine, neroli, rosewood, orange or bergamot. Ylang ylang, sandalwood, and clary sage are also helpful. Smelling these is one of life’s pleasures, so it’s worth it regardless of the results! You can also try these essential oils for stress relief!
Commit to genuine expression and self-love
Because a sacral chakra blockage can result in an inability to set proper boundaries, we can lose the firm sense of who we are and what is right for us. Making a commitment to self-love (no matter how long a road that may seem) is a good move for rebalancing in many ways.
When you love yourself, you won’t tolerate mistreatment and your emotional boundaries will be healthy. You’ll openly stand up for what you feel is right for you, based on integrity rather than habitual reactions. It’s time to stop talking yourself down, too. Remind yourself that you’re as worthy as any one of the life you’ve been given.
A daily meditation practice is a good way to practice self-love. You’re taking time out just for you, to explore your inner world and connect with the vital energy that you came from. Also take time for healthy eating, hobbies, fun activities and expanding your mind. Why not try a workshop, or invest in a book on a subject that fascinates you? When you love your life, you can’t help but love yourself.
Try out some chanting
The seed sound of the sacral chakra is VAM. Sound is an amazing tool, and if you’ve ever studied cymatics (the study of wave phenomena), you’ll know that sound can create matter out of nothing. That’s true power! With this in mind, use chanting as sound therapy for your sacral chakra.
The vibration of the sound VAM, when prolonged, can reset the energies in the chakra. It feels great, too! If you enjoy that, you might also try meditating with sound on a regular basis. Aum and Ah are two of the most fundamental, creative sounds; Aum (Om) is for gratitude and Ah is for manifestation. Play around and see what you can create!
The best way to get back into balance – or maintain the balance you’re fortunate enough to have – is to adopt some of these practices as a regular discipline. This way life knocks will have far less impact on you, and you’ll sail through problems ‘like water off a duck’s back’! What higher goal can there be than that? Have fun balancing your sacral chakra, and enjoy the rewards.