Long ago, our ancestors peered into the human body with the same intensity with which we gaze into the sky, searching for inspiration. With senses beyond the basic five, they perceived swirling energies of light, so bright, so alike stars, they must have gasped in wonder. These bodily stars truly seemed the secret to making dreams come true, each managing a physical, psychological, and spiritual function. Over the years, they analyzed and catalogued these subtle energy bodies, which today we call chakras.
Chakras are everywhere. They are referenced in yoga and meditation. We cleanse and clear our chakras and magnetize them to manifest. Sold on the open market are chakra jewelry, tea, and divination cards. I predict that at some point, chakras will even make it on the sports field. Case in point, a few years ago, a CEO friend of mine pulled me aside and asked if I could give him "chakra tips to improve his golf game." (Now that would be a book! Golfing By the Chakras!)
We know a lot about how chakras affect our lives. Each of the seven main in-body chakras is woven into the endocrine and neurological systems. Every chakra manages specific emotional and mental concerns. And, each chakra serves as a steppingstone toward enlightenment, processing psychic data so we can relate spiritually to the world and heavens. But how much do we know about the science of chakras, the explanations from the "world of nature" that might explain the wondrous activities of the chakras?
As I explore in my book, Llewellyn’s Complete Book of Chakras, "Science" has a lot to say about the chakras. After providing a thumbnail sketch of a chakra's functions, I'll outline several ways that chakras can be understood through the lens of science.
In a nutshell, chakras are subtle energy bodies, also called centers or organs, that lie within and outside of the body. Wherever they are spatially located, they are anchored in the physical body. Like everything in this universe, chakras are composed of energy, simplistically defined as "information that moves."
Everything is made of energy, but the bulk of reality is made of immeasurable or invisible energy, called subtle energy. Though comprised of subtle energy, chakras transform subtle into physical energy, and vice versa. This means that a chakra can potentially make a tumor appear in your body—or disappear (by far our preferred choice.) Simplistically, chakras assist us in making our dreams come true and our problems transform.
As do your physical organs, chakras manage important life concerns. As stated, they each manage an area of the body and a set of psychological constructs. Each also participates in enabling us to access higher truths and develop a conscious and conscientious approach to reality. While the obvious organs like your liver or kidneys can be seen on an X-ray, however, most of us mainly know about the chakras' existence because of their effects. When you meditate on a specific chakra to meet a goal, the intentionality helps bring the desire into being. When you run subtle energy through all your chakras, your experience a rush of power and wellbeing.
On life's stage, chakras interact with two other major characters. All three are part of the grander subtle energetic anatomy. The subtle energy channels are usually called the meridians or nadis. In relation to the chakras, these serve as riverways within the body that exchange subtle energy with the chakras, which might be pictured as islands within these subtle streams. The main subtle energy fields are called the auric fields. These emanate from the chakras and encircle the body, interacting with the environment.
My book presents considerable proof about the existence of all three energetic structures. In regard to the chakras, there are two main ways to look at them scientifically. These are biological and quantum. Biology pertains to our physical existence and measurable standards. Our biological functions follow natural or Newtonian law. Quantum reality is the study of the smallest units of life. The principles of the quantum universe are often called weird and spooky, for they bend, if not obliterate, time and space. Chakras are both biological and quantum, which explains why they can be "here" and "there" at the same time. They can manage bodily tasks but also stretch beyond the concrete and lift us to the stars.
On the biological platform, chakras are considered psychophysiological, electromagnetic, and sonic. The biological presence of chakras can be explained as follows:
- Psychophysiological: In many ways, our humanity is an expression of the chemical and hormonal interactions in our bodies. Chakras have long been associated with specific nerve plexus and endocrine glands, all of which formulate our reactions to the environment, internal and external. One of our main modes of reacting is emotional.
Emotions are created in the body based on many factors, including our memory, family of origin programming, experiences, and basic personality. On a purely physical basis, our feelings are formed from chemicals and electricity, many related to our endocrine glands and our nervous system. The key nerve cells involved are called neurotransmitters and neuropeptides.
What does this complex dance have to do with the chakras?
Researcher Dr. Candace Pert, a renowned scientist and expert on the mind-body phenomenon, discovered that the peptides or proteins and cell receptors for neuropeptides processing emotions are clustered at chakra points. These nerve bundles, organized like chains on either side of the spinal cord, compare almost exactly with the location of the in-body chakras.
This finding suggests that chakras are comparable to mini brains, each coordinating the electrical and chemical activities in our body, but also composing our emotional states. In other words, they synchronize the activities that support our physical health but also emotional wellbeing. It seems that modern science is echoing what the psychically observant already have.
- Electromagnetic: At one level, humans are nothing more (or less) than oscillating fields of electromagnetic energy—or light. Even our DNA emanates light, as do our chakras.
From a mechanical point of view, every cell in our body radiates electrical charge or electrical fields. Electricity creates magnetic fields. The two together form electromagnetic fields (EMF) or radiation. As stated previously, EMF is light. Typically we perceive light as color. But what is color?
Color is a vibrating band of frequencies. Red operates on one band, orange on another, and so on. Most color—or light—is unperceivable. This includes radiations of light such as infrared, ultraviolet, X-rays, and gamma rays. The truth is, however, that we only see about one percent of all light and only a tiny part of "regular colors," like red, yellow, pink, or purple. We don't see light that operates outside of a very small band of length and width. Plain and simple, we don't see most of the light around or emanating from us.
For hundreds if not thousands of years, the major chakras have been visualized as a palette of rainbow colors, red at the base of the spine and white at the top. In between is the remaining plumage—orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple. It turns out that this assignment of Crayola crayons isn't only an artist's dream, nor is it only imaginary. Research from the 1970s revealed that each chakra functions within a corresponding band of EMFs or colored light at frequencies imperceptible to the human eye. Led by Dr. Valerie Hunt at the University of California, the research team recorded electromagnetic radiation emanating from subjects who were being intensely massaged. Different oscillations emitted from the seven basic chakra areas. These waving energies of light were consistent with the coloration typically associated with the chakras.
As well, each chakra was most likely to interact with frequencies that harmonized to itself. For instance, the first chakra, located in the hip area, is associated with the color red. The experiment showed that the first chakra absorbed, processed, and emanated information that fell within its frequency range. If we are made of light—which we are—our chakras are perfect examples of our true nature.
- Sonic: Chakra maestros have long associated each chakra with a sound. While chakras receive and send various frequencies of light, pitch can be described by frequency too. This means that chakras are not only colorful, they are musical.
The truth is that every part of our body makes sound. The nucleus in every cell pulsates constantly. So does every organ and organ system. Vibration creates sound and therefore, we can perceive ourselves as a sound machine, if not the conductor of a grand concerto.
Chakras are unique members of the orchestral suite. Each sings its own song, but the end product is a composition created by the "musicians" in its sphere. As an example, the various tones manufactured by the bones, muscles, cells, glands, nerves, movement, and the like of the hip area transfer into the first chakra, which shares the result with the other chakras and the outside world. As well, like attracts like. The first chakra will "hear" the sounds that vibrate at the same frequencies as it does. The sound of our emotions, needs, and soul can all be heard—and shared—through the chakras.
- Quantum: Chakras have long been linked with various levels of reality; they are seen as providing us a ladder between physical reality and higher realms or states of being. As vehicles for the developing our spiritual nature, they also serve as portals into other dimensions.
Chakras have also been considered wormholes enabling us to access different time periods. People conduct past life regressions through their chakras; they also journey through them to visit and even select a possible future. Because they operate beyond time and space, chakras aren't limited by the confining nature of biological reality. Through the chakras, an individual can send healing energy to someone miles away. He or she can also connect with the deceased or analyze the state of another's soul. Quantum physics, the study of the subatomic ingredients of the universe, shows how chakras can fulfill these rarified tasks.
Chakras enable us to interact in the universe of the unusual because they obey quantum law, not only natural (or biological) law. According to quantum theory, reality is "non-local," not just "local." While a chakra is located at a site along the spine, it also stretches beyond the horizon of physicality to cross all dimensions. This explains the use of chakras as a bridge to supernatural realms. Another quantum principle is that of entanglement. If two objects, people, or particles—I would even suggest thoughts—have ever interacted, they remain forever able to affect each other. Hence the abilities of a person, through their chakras, to perform extrasensory tasks and relate to people or beings not physically present.
As we've seen, chakras can be considered biological vehicles, expressions of subtle energy that impact our physical and emotional selves. But they are also matrixes of energy that join us to the greater universe. Through our chakras, we can conceivable touch every "who," "what," "where," and "when." We can express ourselves as the essence that we are. Just as points of light within our body, so do they connect us with the stars above.
As the ancient said, "As above, so below." We are truly children of the stars.