Before you start to read this blog post – I would like to post a “Woo-Woo Alert”. This may be too “out there” for some, but it is a journey I am so glad I was able to take part in. If you don’t like reading about “woo-woo” stuff, then please move on. If you are still intrigued, then, read on!
Since May, I have been delving deep into my Chakra system, and as I started to write this, I was only a quarter way through this 12 week intensive. It is now near the end of July, and I have danced all my Chakras, and my journey has been gritty, beautiful, powerful, and insightful. It is now time for reflection and continuation of this work.
Briefly, the Chakras are the Energy System that run through our Meridians or the “Energy Grid” of your body, connecting your Physical to your Spiritual. They feed your Aura (Light Body) as well as your Physical Body. “Chakra” is Sanskrit for “Wheel”, and there are 7 Main Chakras that run up the spine to the top of the head. These align your physical, mental, and spiritual health and connect outwards to your Aura. This training has connected me into my deep past, and my present time, to re-align for my future. Throughout this intensive, I have been re-discovering my Self. I believe I have come out of this as a different person. Shari v2.0 if you will. I began this training so that I can facilitate classes, but what I’ve really taken out of it has been my own personal growth. I hope to help others on their journey too. As for myself, this will be an ongoing journey as Life will demand that I check in with my Chakras periodically to realign them for the best possible “me” I can be.
If you’d like to learn more, I’ve attached a Wikipedia link – here. Obviously, there is so much more to this system than what this link provides, but this can hopefully get you started if you want to learn more.
This intensive that I have been taking part of is Chakradance. A trademarked, well researched journey into Chakra healing, through specialized music and movement geared and created specifically for this course. Natalie Southgate is the founder, and she has spent over 25 years fine-tuning and developing this program. This particular training program had us work with one Chakra a week, along with a workbook – beginning at the Base Chakra and working up to the Crown Chakra. Each session began with a meditation, then a warm up, before going into the Chakra that we are working with that week. After dancing the Chakra(s), we then draw out our feelings/emotions/images into Mandala Art. This is another essential part of Chakradance. Once that is completed, we finish off reflecting on our Mandala, and then a closing meditation. The music is amazing, and I can feel it resonating with each Chakra as I dance and move through, and with it. I feel the Music, along with the Mandala Art that comes out of it. This is what really makes Chakradance tick. It is truly a beautiful, magical experience. Chakradance is a worldwide phenomenon with over 50 countries participating as part of our global energy shift. Our world is changing, our Mother Earth is raising her frequency as more people awaken to their higher consciousness. Chakradance as the “Sister of Yoga” is an excellent way to really work through those blockages that prevent you from becoming your better Self.
I found Chakradance about a year and a half ago, and took the Discovery Course when they were running a promotional special. This was a relatively quick four hour period in which you can finish at your leisure, and it briefly covered the 7 Chakras, as well as the Root Chakra. That experience has stayed with me since then. When I received the email about the complete 12-week intensive again being offered, I had to take it. Chakradance wasn’t just calling me – it was shouting! I believe our world needs Chakradance now, more than ever.
So this blog will be taking you through my journey – the beautiful, the raw, the gritty… sharing what I feel may be helpful to you. As they say, you cannot conquer the storm by running around it, you must go through it.
I hope this helps you, as much as it has helped me.
The Root Chakra – Muladhara
So my journey begins with the Root Chakra. This is the anchor. This Chakra is located at the base of your Spine, and glows a deep Red. This is where you get grounded. Where you connect with Mother Nature/Gaia/The Gaia Grid. The music is tribal. Animalistic. Earthy. Images of the Ancient Ancestors danced before my closed eyes as I went through this dance. Karma from many lifetimes before paid a visit. Issues that came up from the deep past surfaced. Lifetimes of raising families, watching over Tribes, and feeling responsible for the failure of those we love surfaced. Raw. Emotional. Necessary. It all came through the Metaphorical Birth Canal. Although the images, feelings, and emotions were rough to go through, I breathed through it and continued on. Like a herd of Buffalo that will go through the storm instead of around it, so did I. Go through the storm. It was all worth it in the end. I had a voice that whispered to me “This guilt, this pain, this sense of responsibility is no longer yours to bear. Let it go.” And I did. A sense of lightness washed over me, and the feeling of loving arms encircled me. Breathe. Take it all in. And since that experience, I’ve felt lighter. Negative things would bounce off me. I’ve felt protected. Loved. And accepting of my life and my role in this life. Below is the Mandala Art that came from this Dance.
As I worked on the Root (Muladhara) Chakra that week, I found certain things changing within me. Certain attitudes about food, my connection to Family, recognizing when “fear” of change holds me back and feeling the strength to push forward. I felt a stronger connection to Nature, that I haven’t felt in years. I felt my Ancestors and Guides protecting me throughout the week. A certain lightness was felt – that “Yes, You Can Do This!”. My main words for this week were Strength, Wisdom, Acceptance, and Gratitude.
The perfect ending to Muladhara (Root) Chakra week was being “gifted” a perfect piece of Birch bark peel that was sitting by my swing, curled up like a scroll, first thing in the morning as I was sipping my cup of coffee. I don’t have any birch near me – there are some in the neighbourhood – so I believe this was left for me by one of the critters that frequent our feeders.
With the first week done, I was ready go move up to the Sacral Chakra.
The Sacral Chakra – Svadhisthana
Ah, the Sacral Chakra. Your Female Half. Located about an inch below your navel, it glows a bright Orange. Your creativity, your femininity, your sexuality, your untamed lives here. As a woman, it is sometimes hard to embrace your sexuality. We have been “trained” to suppress it for so long that sometimes it is hard to express. And not just our sexuality. Ourselves as Women. We can call on this Chakra to empower our feminine side – and this isn’t only just for women, but men too. All in all, it is this Chakra that allows ourselves to express our creativity and embrace our Devine Feminine, no matter how we identify ourselves. The element of the Sacral Chakra is Water, and the music for this Chakra is sensual, earthy, almost Middle Eastern with some water elements to it, to allow that sensual, delicate, wild flow. We may find ourselves dancing like a belly dancer, or with wild abandon as we shed our insecurities about our bodies, and embrace our Selves.
While working with the Sacral (Svadhisthana) Chakra, I found myself getting better at expressing my emotions in a constructive, kinder way. I found myself getting better at setting boundaries, valuing my feelings and working through them as I respond to them. This week really brought forward the term “If your Well is Empty, you cannot quench another’s Thirst”. The Healer must go through their own Healing, before they can heal others.
Dancing the Sacral Chakra, with the exotic Middle Eastern rhythms along with the sounds of the water element, I found myself on a journey of finding my Inner Goddess. I also found that while writing about it, words flowed onto the page effortlessly, like a poem, but more as a Written Word. I have discovered Intuitive Writing, and I like it! Here is what I wrote about my Sacral Chakradance experience while dancing:
Finding My Inner Goddess I was walking underwater, on the sands amidst The waving kelp. A Seahorse came into my view – a bright orange and said “Here, I will be your guide”. We watched the sunset together. We rode the waves. We came across a Mermaid Siren, and Seahorse left me with Her. I became the Mermaid Siren, and felt her Sensuous Power. We played with the waves, and gleefully Crashed them on the Ocean Rocks. Those Rocks were issues of feeling inferior. Of feeling oppressed. Of abuse. Being held down. We smashed and obliterated those rocks with Our waves. Water is Strong. The Moon came out. I was in a Forest. I was the Forest Nymph. Dancing in Wild Abandon. I became Shakti. Fierce, Proud, Sensuous. Owning Her Feminine Power and Glory. I Am The Goddess. I Am the Wild Forest Nymph I Am the Mermaid Siren Calmed and guided by Seahorse.”
After dancing the Sacral Chakra, I felt mystical, sensual, feminine, and powerful. I felt calm. I felt at peace, a comfort of who I am, and what I’ve been through. And again, Acceptance. It was another week of clearing, of cleansing, and release. Now, it was time for the male counterpart – the Solar Plexus Chakra!
The Solar Plexus Chakra – Manipura
The Solar Plexus (Manipura) Chakra is the Dance of Power. It is located between your navel and the base of your sternum. It is what gives you your Power, your Drive. Solar Plexus is “Lustrous Gem” in Sanskrit, and is your Golden Jewel – your Sun, and has an element of Fire. I found dancing the Solar Plexus Chakra powerful and exhilarating. At first, I was a little intimidated by it, but as I let myself go into the Dance, I was met with such heat, such power – I was ready for that week. This Chakra helped me work through my own “Imposter Syndrome”, of not feeling qualified enough to share, teach, or shine my own light. I’m sure we all have these feelings, and working through them with this Chakra brought me deeper as to why I may feel this way. Connections again into my past – and even my past lives- brought me a realization that I am who I am, and the worst I can do to myself is compare myself to others. This brought home deeply the realization that the only one I can compare myself to, is me. Where have I been, how far I have come, and have I improved from a past version of MySelf. This is where the Drive, and the Power come from. Your Solar Plexus. Through this week, I felt more protected, as if I had someone nearby (Spirit Guide/Guardian Angel/ Ancestor) with me.
As Chakradance is heavily influenced by Jungian Psychology, we also worked on the Archetypes of each Chakra. The Solar Plexus Archetypal exercise was really interesting for this one, as I felt the best way to do this one would be through another Intuitive Written Word piece. Nothing was scratched out, the words left on the page as they came through my pen. Through Spirit.
As this week progressed, I felt grateful, Focused, and Balanced. Working with the Solar Plexus proved to be such a anchor to me, furthering my work through all 7 of these Chakras. I was ready to move into the loving energy of the Heart Chakra.
The Heart Chakra – Anahata
“The Heart Chakra’s true purpose is to help us experience the joy of loving and receiving love. Located at the centre of the chest, the heart chakra balances the energies of the lower and upper chakras. We feel it as the breath that dances between Body & Spirit”– Natalie Southgate, Founder of Chakradance
This was felt again and again while working with this Chakra. The Sanskrit word for Heart Chakra is Anahata – “Unhurt”. We find love and compassion for both others and ourselves. It is a balance between the Male & Female, Yin/Yang, Light/Dark within ourselves. When our Heart Chakra is balanced, we become non-judgemental of ourselves and others. We can see beyond behaviours and into the real person. This does not permit ourselves to be “walked over”, because if we did that, we would not be loving Our Selves. Boundaries are still very important – but set in Love.
During this week, I found colours brighter, the animals were more responsive. I felt like a Disney Princess in the forest, with the birds, squirrels and rabbits coming in for a closer look.
During the Dance, I felt both the Male and Female parts of myself merging and combining in a Dance of Love. Vibrant colours of green and blues were seen, along with two Swans, the Dragonfly, the Lotus Bloom, and a Guide who was a large bird, interchanging between a Bird and an Angel. I felt this Guide through these changes, and the Guide became MySelf. It was a truly magical experience. Tears of joy were shed, and a pure Soul Love & Forgiveness was felt. Symbols that came across in my experience and how I saw them were: Dragonfly – Joy and connection to Mother Earth & Father Sky; Male & Female Swan, interchanging and dancing — Love; Air — movement & expansion of that Love outwards; Lotus — forgiveness, Love, and Growth. My Guide was both a large bird, and an Angel, — My Self, my Spirit.
Again, I worked on the Jungian Archetypes of the Heart (Anahata) Chakra, with the Positive as “The Lover of Life” and the Negative as “The Pretender”, and their relationship with myself or others around me. Here is what I discovered.
Positive – The Lover of Life:
- Non-judgemental, looks like they’re walking on air, radiates Light and Love, optimistic, knows their purpose and not afraid to set boundaries, smiles a lot, sees the good in everyone, not afraid of death, loves unconditionally, pure, radiates happiness, loves the Pretender anyways.
Negative – The Pretender:
- Doesn’t feel they’re good enough so they do things for popularity/ego to make up for it, their love is conditional, a “fair-weather friend”, possessive and jealous, use guilt to get what they want, manipulative.
This was another transformative week. I felt as if I was walking on air. The animals around me seemed to feel it. Colours were more vibrant. I’m less afraid of sharing who “I Am” and less worried about feeling like an impostor. I feel genuine love for all around me, and an even deeper understanding of those (and compassion) for those who have not been so kind. Loving Kindness, and Light, with a batch of Protection have been my Guides this week. I am ready to move on to the Throat Chakra!
The Throat Chakra – Vissudha
The 5th Chakra is the Throat Chakra (Vissudha), Sanskrit for “Purification”.
Now that I’ve gone from the Root to the Heart Chakras, I am ready to communicate my truth. There is a Buddhist principle of “Wise Speech” that holds so true for this Chakra, and for Life.
- Is it True?
- Is it Kind?
- Is it Necessary?
- Is it at the Right Time?
And always, are these four precepts always spoken with Love?
When I first started this Chakradance Intensive, the Throat Chakra is the one that intimidated me the most. I have always felt I was too soft spoken, my voice was “too high”, and I was never really “heard” or taken seriously. As I’ve moved through the other Chakras, these ideas have softened, and the sharpness and hurt of these feelings have subsided a bit. I’m so grateful I was able to go through the other Chakras first, instead of diving right into the Throat Chakra. I would not have been ready! This week, I am.
I have realized that “listening” is as much a part of communication as speaking, and active listening is vital. I found that I would overcompensate with my insecurities with my throat chakra by mindless chit-chat, engage in gossip, or an “even better story” than the one told by another. All of these have been harmful practices, and never really added any value to the conversation or energy of the group.
Working with this Chakra has helped me with “wiser communication”, speaking only if what I was about to say was a meaningful contribution. Remembering that words are powerful – and must be used wisely. This Chakra isn’t only about communicating with words, but also with expressing yourself creatively. Through Art, Dance, Poetry. Communication is also expressed in your actions. Or inaction. Active listening. “Holding Space” for someone.
Dancing the Vissudha (Throat Chakra), we were also encouraged to chant, hum, or make sound while moving. A Chanting/Moving Meditation, if you will. During this dance, while humming, I felt the resonance of my own voice, the healing vibrations within. I saw more colours and shapes than concrete images. Wavy lines, pulsing shapes. Any images I saw during this dance (with my eyes closed), were pulsing – a bright pulsing Sun, a Lotus Flower, a gentle wise face, and hands in prayer. Most of these images were outlines in light – with colours I cannot really describe. The message I received through this Dance was listening to the “Soundwaves of the Ancients”. Yes, it may seem a little more “woo-woo”, but it was so beautiful, I had to just surrender and Dance in the Moment.
I was able to see two sides of myself through the Vissudha Archetypes – as I moved from “The Silent Child” to “The Communicator”, and this is reflected through my Jungian Archetypal exercise exploring the Positive and Negative using Written Word through Inspired Writing. I was really able to dive deep within myself to see where I was, and who I hope to be.
Negative Archetype: “The Silent Child” Was told as a child That young ladies must Be polite Young ladies mustn’t Yell, stomp, or curse. So she was quiet And didn’t speak out much. She was spoken over, Dominated in many Conversations. Until she felt she had to Dominate and speak too Much Her words became fillers With nothing of importance Anyways. So she again withdrew Into her silent corner. Again, being taken for granted. Silent. Alone. Even with people around. So she thought – “Just cut Out my Throat, since I Don’t like my Voice Anyways. Small.
Positive Archetype: “The Communicator” She was told as a child That young ladies should Be polite So she was – speaking kindly And wise. But she didn’t listen when told not To object. She objected and Spoke her mind. But always kind. She expressed herself in words. Creativity, Art, and Song. She learned to Listen, as well as Speak And learned she didn’t need to dominate Every conversation, Thought, or Deed. She became Wise, Patient, and Kind. She was Heard. She was a Comfort To those whom she stopped to Listen. Saw the words in the Silence Saw the Peace in the Chaos Saw the Calm in the Storm. She was a Communicator Of the Heart. Within her Throat.
I cannot express how much this Chakra week meant to me, how much I learned and what I felt. Only that I no longer felt ashamed of my voice, of what I believed, and of my creativity. More embraced who I AM.
I only wish I worked with my Throat Chakra earlier in my life — but I cannot dwell on that. I’m so grateful of this experience, and of this Chakradance Intensive.
The 3rd Eye Chakra – Anja
The music for the 3rd Eye Chakra (Anja) is more trance like. It is a dance of Inner Vision. The Dance of Intuition. “Anja” means to Perceive and to Command. We explore our intuitive self, and open ourselves to the flow of intuition. I found myself wanting to spin or whirl (slowly of course, or else I’d end up on my bum). It is the colour Indigo – of the night sky.
At the beginning of this week, before doing any workbook material, I decided to Dance the 3rd Eye Chakra. As I began, I felt myself becoming light headed. I saw a vortex spinning right were my 3rd Eye would be. Transcended, I travelled the Universe, as I became a large bird. As I came back down, I felt the wise Old Crone visit again, but this time She was my Guide. I also became her. I Danced her Wisdom, and as we ascended, we reached a doorway. At the doorway, I changed into a more youthful angel and opened the door. As I opened it, I was greeted with a huge bright sun. I held it. Felt it. Felt its warmth. The Message I received from this Chakradance was;
“Intuition is Yours. From your Ancestors, from You. Claim it. Own it.”
Some people tell you as you begin work with your 3rd Eye, you may get unexplainable headache right where your 3rdEye is located (on your forehead between your eyes). Well, I got that – and some really vivid dreams. Because of these dreams, I was exhausted during the day. This went on for the first half of the week. During that time, I was dreaming I was busy either healing, rescuing, or helping people, and it was proving to be exhausting. I was not getting the rest during sleep I needed. So, I decided to dance the 3rd Eye Chakra again, this time with the intention of calming my 3rd Eye.
As I danced this time around, I was met in the Temple of Isis, and we Danced. During this time, I was advised to not be afraid of opening my 3rd Eye, but when I do, I must do so gently. Allow the dreams and intuition to come. If the dreams are too vivid and too active, don’t be afraid to ask your Guides/Deity/Universe for a “vacation from active dreams” so you are able to recharge. Draw from the wisdom of your ancestors and ask them for guidance. Enjoy the experience and don’t be afraid to try something new. Don’t be worried about others’ “perceived toxicity” – it is only that. Perceived. Do what you do, listen to your intuition, and don’t let those naysayers get to you. Let it bounce right off you. Dance with Life. Dance with Feeling. Dance with Intuition. Dance with Isis.
So that evening, I asked the Universe, my Guides, and God to let me have a restful sleep. No more “rescuing” people in my dreams that night. I was rested, recharged, and ready for the next day!
After working with controlling my dreams, working with my intuition, and allowing myself to follow it, I felt that the world around me started to open up a little more. I was able to feel more into what made this insane world around us more manageable. To breathe in the Quiet, the Stillness, and allow that tiny little voice of Intuition to come through to guide me. I was ready to work with the final Chakra of this series, The Crown Chakra.
The Crown Chakra – Sahasrara
Now, we are into the final Chakra of this series – The Crown Chakra. The Sanskrit word for this Chakra is “Sahasrara”. This is the Dance of the Soul.
The colour for the Crown Chakra is Violet, White, or Gold. It was a beautiful Chakra to dance.
During this dance, I found that my body didn’t move as much – I more swayed, than danced – but I felt that my Soul was Dancing. High in the Heavens, all around me, I was Dancing Spirit. It felt like a Dancing Prayer. It was another journey into the Cosmos. Creation. Universe, Flight, surrounded by Light. I was watching myself dance in my vision as my eyes were closed, swaying peacefully to the Chakradance music. I saw myself becoming the Violet Flame, dancing among a giant tree – but not burning it. I felt healing hands, a healing heart, and a healing Spirit throughout this meditative dance. After it was done, I felt so much lighter. It was simply beautiful – you’d have to experience it for yourself.
My week during this was pretty laid back. Truthfully, I was expecting grand visions, or revelations, but instead felt a calm feeling of peace. I guess that is all I really needed – not the trumpeting of Angels or an influx of inspiring thoughts. I suppose I’ve been getting these all along, during these 7 past weeks, throughout each Chakra. And I’m so grateful for that! So in all truthfulness, it was nice just to have a quieter week. A more laid back week.
Integration Week – Reflecting on my Chakra Journey.
As I finished the week of the Crown Chakra, we had one more week of this Intensive to go. This is “Integration Week”, where we reflect on the past 7-8 week journey into Chakradance, what has changed within ourselves, and when we get to spend the next Chakradance dancing to a piece of music that merges all 7 Chakras together. This dance wasn’t guided like the others – it allowed me to flow freely through the entire dance, feeling each Chakra vibrate and resonate as I danced.
The following is what I wrote in my Journal as I reflected on my journey through the Chakras during this Intensive.
At the beginning, I felt this was going to be a long process but I was excited about it. I was hesitant on working on the Sacral and Throat Chakras, but found the Root and Crown the toughest.
The Root Chakra was INTENSE, but I learned that I had to go THROUGH IT, and once that happened, the most AMAZING RELEASE came!
I found as I worked on each Chakra, it would prepare me for the next one. I think I need to work more on the Crown though – I did not feel enough there. I was expecting more?
Surprisingly, the POWER I felt during the Solar Plexus week has remained with me for several weeks after, although it has drawn into the background a bit.
I was also surprised at the Throat Chakra – one I always feared working with. I found it soothing and I found MY VOICE. I’ve also discovered for me, the Solar Plexus Chakra gave strength to my throat.
The 3rd Eye was also intense. I experienced a bugger of a headache at the first 3 days, and some wildly vivid dreaming. Like I spent my dream life helping, healing, and rescuing. I had to ask the Universe for a “vacation” from active dreaming. It worked! Also, about the headache – halfway through the week I was prompted to dance the 3rdEye again, and this time, I Danced with Isis, and my headache was instantly gone.
The Heart Chakra created a vivid, loving energy for me, and that week was REALLY FLOATY. Everything was brighter, lighter, and even the animals seemed to respond.
Surprisingly enough, the Sacral Chakra was also empowering. It didn’t matter that Bellydance naturally flowed into it (I was worried I’d fall into Bellydance Choreography Brain, and not ‘let go’). It allowed me to feel feminine, sensual, AND Powerful. To embrace my Feminine Devine.
To wrap this all up, I’ve listed the best “take home” moments from each Chakra during this experience.
My most profound “A-Ha” Moments during this Intensive:
- Root Chakra— letting go of the self-blame of the past – even the Past Karma/Akashic blame I didn’t even realizing I was holding
- Sacral Chakra— finally embracing my Devine Feminine and owning my sexiness/sensuality
- Solar Plexus Chakra — allowing and letting myself feel empowered and shedding my “imposter syndrome”
- Heart Chakra — profound love for EVERYTHING. Seeing from another perspective: Outside myself. Feeling the Yin/Yang Balance
- Throat Chakra — loving my voice, and discovering an amazing vibrational spirit through CHANTING!
- 3rd Eye Chakra — having power over my dreams and dancing with Isis to heal my headaches
- Crown Chakra — I’m not sure I had any ‘a-ha’ moments here, as it felt really quiet. Was there a reason for this? Is there something that is holding me back in regards to this Chakra? Or – is it that all the other weeks were so active that the Crown Chakra Week let me ‘have a break’ (which I doubt it, now that I think of it). I may have to work on this one a little more.
As I have completed this Intensive, I have the music and the materials to go back and repeat as needed. When I feel certain areas being blocked, I can go back and work on that Chakra(s) to balance them out again. I’m so glad I went through this Intensive to work on my own Inner Self. I’m hoping I can take what I’ve learned about my self, and my own healing journey to others. To help others with their own journeys. To be there, this time being able to hold space for others, without the energies of others draining mine. I have realized that Boundaries are so important. Energetic protection is so important. And Healing is also so important. You cannot help Heal others, if you have not worked on your own Healing first. I have a feeling that this work will be ongoing, and with the energy going around this world as well as my daily life, I will need to monitor my energy, my Chakras and keep them balanced so I can be a better Me – to my Self, and to those around me. Though all this, I am hoping to soon become a Chakradance Facilitator so that I can help others with their own Spiritual/Energetic journey through the Chakras. I will be announcing my Accreditation formally, once I receive my Chakradance License.
Thank you for reading!