The winds of grade blow all the time. All we need to do is set our rails.

In understanding the centers on the map that we call the chakra system, it is essential to learn about the highways that connect them. In addition to thousands of nadis, or inner pathways of energy, there are four major highways, which I call the currents of liberation, manifestation, reception, and expression.

As an upright creature standing on your hind legs, you walk through life, moving forward with your feet on the ground and your head in the air. Thus the main currents of energy within the body flow upward and downward. As we exchange energy with the world outside the body, we engage in the horizontal currents of expression and reception.

The upward current, which is most commonly associated with chakra theory, is called the current of liberation. It begins at the earth and rises through the body, step by step, toward ever more awareness, gaining increasing freedom from the limitations of the physical world with each step. The journey to consciousness allows us to wake up to new possibilities and liberate ourselves from constricting or compulsive behaviors. In the ancient texts, this current is called mukti, or freedom.

The downward current, which begins in consciousness and descends toward the earth, is the current of manifestation. Beginning at the crown of the head, thought forms arise and become denser and more specific with each step downward, until they manifest on the physical plane. You might have no idea, then form your idea into images, talk about it to your friends, and give it your energy until you manifest a finished product. The ancients called this downward current bukti, or enjoyment.

I believe it is essential to have both currents flowing freely to be a balanced individual. You need to be able to liberate yourself from fixed or limiting forms in order to experience the true nature of expanded consciousness. And you need to be able to manifest your dreams and visions, bringing them into reality in order to influence the world around you. If the upward current is blocked, you may be unable to liberate, meaning that you are limited by constricting or destructive patterns such as health problems, addictions, or compulsive activities. If the downward current is blocked, you may have lots of ideas and talk about them to all your friends, but somehow they never come to completion.

As these two currents pass each other, they mix together and create the vortices known as the chakras. In the high chakras, we have a great deal of freedom, but little substance. For example, the mind can imagine things that do not exist in the manifested planes. In the lower chakra levels, we have less freedom, but more solid manifestation. We have structures and forms, things we can touch and see, but they do not have the flexibility of the imagination. If all the chakras are open, these currents can complete their journey and you can experience the full spectrum of your potential.

In addition to the vertical currents, there are two horizontal ones: the currents of reception and expression. You receive energy from those around you in the form of information, emotions, love, or touch. You express what’s inside of you, such as your thoughts, creativity, or your love. If either of these currents are blocked you may be compromised in your social interactions, having difficulty receiving or expressing one or more of the chakra-related aspects.

buddha-adobestock_73707119-compressedTaken from Anodea Judith’s Chakra Balancing Kit  

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