The seventh Chakra, Sahaswara, is referred to as the thousand-petal lotus Chakra. This is the top Chakra of the seven and located at the crown of the head. Sahaswara is our source of enlightenment and spiritual connection to all that is. It is a connection to our higher selves, to every being on the planet, and ultimately the divine energy that creates everything in the universe.
True opening of Sahaswara means the realization that you are pure awareness. You are pure consciousness, undivided, and all expansive. Like a drop in the ocean, you are a part of that ocean that contains and encompasses every aspect of it.
Emerging From the Murky Waters
The lotus flower is a symbol in both the Hindu and Buddhist traditions. It is nurtured, grows, and emerges in muddy waters. It blooms where there is no clarity. The beauty of the lotus is unique to its environment, which appears monotonous and lacks vibrancy.
When you reach the unfurling of the seventh Chakra, you emerge through the confines of the physical body, the ego, mind, and intellect. You even push beyond the individual soul that ties you to Samsara, the endless cycle of birth and rebirth. You are freed from the shackles of desire. White light surrounds your body and you appear to stand out in your murky surroundings.
Is This an Unattainable Beauty?
After reading the description of the seventh Chakra, it may seem out of reach. You may think, “Well, that sounds nice for monks and gurus, but not for me. I’m just an ordinary person with a normal life.”
While we have the demands of daily living and the busy minds that accompany these demands, reaching enlightenment may not be as far off as it appears. A worthy goal may be to live in a constant state of pure awareness. But how about living with moments of pure awareness? We have all experienced these moments at one time or another. Have you ever felt unconditional love for someone? Have you ever experienced a miracle?
Practicing meditation, prayer, and daily silence are disciplines that lead to increased moments of spiritual connection. In fact, these are the only means by which you will experience the essence of Sahaswara. Just as you would go to school for hours a day and study for exams to obtain a degree, meditation, prayer, and silence are your studies to obtain a spiritual degree.
Once you’ve established a daily practice of these activities that connect you to universal consciousness, you will see expansion of spiritual awareness in your outer world. You will begin to experience unconditional love on a consistent basis. You will be more compassionate, kind, and forgiving, and you will show more humility. Life will no longer be solely about you and your desires. Your life will become more about serving others because when you serve others, you are serving yourself.
Asanas, Sounds, Colors, and Gems
While silence is the most powerful and important way to opening the seventh Chakra, there are some other practices that support this Chakra.
Two Pranayama breathing techniques you can do before meditation include Nadi Shodhana, or alternate nostril breathing, and Kapalabhati, or the skull shining breath.
Inverted yoga asanas such as headstand (Salamba Sirsasana) and down dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana) can help stimulate the seventh Chakra, as well as any posture that brings the crown of the head to the floor such as fish pose (Matsyasana).
The color for the crown Chakra is violet or white and the mantra sound is the universal sound of OM. Gems you can wear or have in your environment to help open and align the seventh Chakra are amethyst, selenite, and sugilite.
Symbolism of the Image
Sahasrara, meaning thousand, is the “Lotus of the Thousand Petals” located four finger-breadths above the crown of the head. Sahasrara Chakra is the upper terminal point of Sushumna nadi, the central channel. From Saharara the nectar of immortality (Amrita) flows in a constant stream.
- Location: Top of the cranium
- Name: Thousand petaled
- Plane: Truth and reality
Sahasrara Chakra is the seat of the parabindu (supreme bindu). It is the location of the merging of Kundalini Shakti and Shiva. By this union the adept attains liberation while living which is considered in Indian life to be the highest experience: an union of the individual with the universe.
Sahasrara Chakra is located above Brahma-randhra, “the cave of Brahma”. It is a hole in the crown of the head through which the soul is said to escape at death. When the Yogi separates himself from the physical body at the time of death, this Brahma-randhra bursts open and the soul comes out through this opening (Kapala Moksha). This opening is also called the ‘Door to Pure Consciousness’ or door of liberation.
Once the Kundalini Shakti, also called “Serpent Power”, has ascended through Sushumna to Sahasrara, it is made to reverse its course and return to rest in the base center again. Immortality is achieved within Sahasrara Chakra. Before attaining to this Chakra the yogi is unable to reach the unconscious conscious state called asama-prajnata-samadhi. In this state there is no activity of the mind and no knower, no knowledge, nothing to be known: knowledge, knower, and known all become unified and liberated.
When the Kundalini is raised up to Sahasrara Chakra, the illusion of individual self is dissolved. The yogi becomes realized, one with the cosmic principles that govern the entire universe within the body. One is no longer subjected to birth or death.
Samadhi is the pure bliss of total inactivity. Up to the sixth Chakra the yogi may enter a trance in which activity or form still remains within the consciousness.
In Sahasrara Chakra the prana moves upward and reaches the highest point. The mind establishes itself in the pure void of Shunya Mandala, the space between the hemispheres.
At this time all feelings, emotions and desires, which are the activities of the mind, are dissolved into their primary cause. The union is achieved. The yogi is sat-chit-ananda, truth-being-bliss.
He is his own real self, and as long as he stays in his physical body he retains nondual consciousness, enjoying the play of lila without becoming troubled by pleasure and pain, honors and humiliations.