The History And Origins Of Chakras
Part of understanding a topic better is knowing where it originated from and seeking more information on its roots. When you talk about the term Chakra, it is mostly associated with yoga, meditation, and one’s health. But have you ever wondered about the history of Chakras? Are you aware of the origins of Chakras and where they came from? Let’s talk about it more below.
What Is A Chakra?
First, let’s briefly discuss what a Chakra is. A Chakra refers to an energy center in your body. Having your Chakras aligned or balanced means your energy centers are in good shape. On the other hand, experiencing imbalance or blockage may refer to illness in your body, may it be physically or emotionally.
We are most aware of the popular seven Chakras system which includes the Root Chakra, Sacral Chakra, Solar Plexus Chakra, Heart Chakra, Throat Chakra, Third Eye Chakra, and the Crown Chakra. From what we know, these Chakras are associated with different colors and emotions, as well as glands and organs. More popularly, we look into these Chakras functionality and positions which can indicate types of health.
Here is a brief history of the Chakras in the human body:
What Is The Origin Of Chakras?
Even though the mystery of who first discovered Chakras remains unknown, its wisdom has been passed down through different generations by word of the mouth. The history of Chakra system all started with the Aryans.
From then on, scholars have verified the first use of this term in Vedas, one of the oldest religious texts, and it was specifically coined on the part of Upanishads around 500 B.C. From Later texts of Upanishads, the word “Chakra” was used, and this term refers to wheel or disk. It was originally spelled as “Cakra,” and was used to refer to chariot wheels of rulers. This is largely different to how we use the term Chakra today.
Afterwards, the term Chakra appeared more through Hindu and Buddhist scriptures with a more similar context on how we use this term today such as use of the term prana (life force energy) and subtle body. However, we must recognize that there are several interpretations from Hindu and Buddhist beliefs when it comes to different chakra systems.
What Is The History Of The Traditional Chakra System?
What is the history of chakras as we know today? You will learn that there are many variations of the Chakra system stemming from Tantrism, different religions, such as the two that we mentioned, Hinduism and Buddhism.
Surprisingly, you cannot set apart these teachings by religion alone since the Hindu teaching has different systems with different numbers of Chakra involved. However, you would recognize similarities in use of terms like force energy and subtle body. Although, it is notable that the Traditional Chakra System did not involve rainbow colors. Instead, they were correlated with Hindu deities and the five elements.
Another notable mention of Chakra is from a Hindu Yoga Guru called Gorakhnath. He is said to be the father of Hatha yoga because of his great contributions to chakra meditation. He believed that to fully enter the spiritual world, you must be accustomed to your own spiritual body. He acknowledged that there are 9 Chakras, and his teachings of the spiritual aspects of the human body are much recognized.
You might wonder where did chakras originate, and where did all different Chakras come from. Most say that since Chakras represent free-flowing energy, the Chakras they govern or encounter may differ from people.
What Is The History Of The Modern Chakra System?
The history of the 7 Chakras starts with Sri-Tattva-Cintamini by Swami Purananda where he has written the chapter called Sat-Cakra-Nirupana (description of the six centers). The chapter talks about the 7 chakras and their importance, just as we know today. Then, a researcher, Sir John Woodroffe, translated this text and included the Chakras in his book called “The Serpent Power.” Alice Bailey, a British-American author, had translated an old Indian text referring to the 7-Chakras system, coining the teachings of Djwhal Khul, a Tibetan master.
In 1977, Christopher Hills wrote his book Nuclear Evolution where we first encountered the association of the endocrine system and colors to Chakra. In previous scriptures, it is notable that there are no mentions of light frequencies when it comes to its connection with Chakras. The book heavily influenced the ideas and concepts that we have today of Chakra, especially as it talked about modern science and spirituality hand in hand.
What Is The Origin of 114-Chakra System?
Dr. Amit Ray recently conducted research and has attest that the total number of Chakras in a body is 114. In 2018, Dr. Ray was able to name all 114 Chakras after much research from old Tantric scriptures and philosophies. He deducted that there are 7 major Chakras as we know, and additional 21 minor Chakras and 86 micro Chakras. Dr. Ray confirmed that they are associated with organs, glands, hormones, and even neurons. Along with the Chakras, Dr. Ray has attested to having 72000 Nadis in a body. Badis are the channels through which the prana (energy) flows all over the body.
We have talked about the history of the Chakras which mostly stemmed from Tantrism. Chakras originated from Upanishads, but the term has been used through word of mouth long before it was written in scripture. With this being said, the term Chakras has largely grown on its own, from being used by different religions to its system where modern science and other concepts are involved and associated in.
Opinions may vary regarding the Chakar’s concept, especially with the large difference of the traditional and modern take. The birth of Nuclear Evolution by Christopher Hills gave a different perspective regarding Chakras, and has made the term a familiar one. Regardless of opting for the traditional or modern take, the history and origin of Chakras show how we have come so far on learning about its concept, and how we have much to explore.