Introduction to the Muladhara Root Chakra
The Muladhara root chakra is the foundation of the entire chakra system. As such, it is the beginning point of human spiritual development. It is from Muladhara’s stable foundation, where we begin to ascend the energetic levels of the chakras, from survival to enlightenment. It is the seat of Kundalini Shakti energy – which lies dormant at the base of the spine. Our Kundalini Shakti is the vehicle with which we can make our ascent towards self-realization and awakening at the Sahasrara chakra.
Like the roots of a tree, drawing sustenance and stability from the depths of its foundation, a strong Muladhara root chakra is needed for the human being to flourish and bloom. It is from the stable and open Muladhara chakra that we can bear fruits and seeds from our spiritual efforts. When you balance your root chakra energy, you create a solid and nourishing base from which to grow.
Muladhara Root Chakra Associations
- Sanskrit name: Muladhara
- English name: Root or base
- Etymology: Mula = Origin, Root, Adhara = Foundation
- Location: Base of the spine/coccyx
- Color: Red
- Element: Earth
- Power word: Survival
- Physical associations: Adrenals, bones, teeth, nails, large intestine, and rectum
- Planet: Mars
- Animal: Elephant with seven trunks – grounding, earth connection, strong foundations
- Deity: Indra – Supreme ruler
- Lotus: Four petals symbolizing the four points of the compass
- Keynote: C
- Solfeggio frequency: 396 Hz
- Nature sound: Thunder
- Seed mantra: Lam
- Affirmation: I feel secure, stable, and grounded
- Crystals: Red jasper, ruby, onyx, tourmaline, hematite, obsidian, garnet, bloodstone
- Essential oils: Frankincense, patchouli, myrrh, vetiver, sandalwood, cedarwood
- Mineral: Calcium
- Metal: Lead
- Foods: Strawberries, blackberries, red bell pepper, raspberries, tomatoes, chili pepper, black olives, cherries, blackcurrants, activated charcoal, black beans, redcurrants
The Muladhara root chakra relates to our basic needs and primal instincts, such as security and the fundamental elements needed to survive, e.g., financial stability, shelter, food, and warmth. It reflects our sense of belonging and our roots in social and family groups.
Muladhara aligns with the element of earth and can facilitate our connection with Mother Earth and nature. It can provide the stable grounding energy that is essential in our busy modern lives. It has the slowest vibrational frequency of all seven main chakras and is in alignment with the sound of thunder and earthquakes. If you are drawn to these sounds, it could be a sign that you need to balance your root chakra.
The Muladhara root chakra also underpins our physical identity. It is the base foundation for our sense of self and self-preservation. Body image issues and lack of will power can stem from an imbalance in this chakra. It is associated with the primitive self, and as such, is driven by base needs and primal instincts. This can sometimes counteract the ideals we have for ourselves, and a feeling of misalignment and inner battle can occur.
In fact, it is not a misalignment at all – merely the difference between our primitive drives (lower chakras) versus our logical, spiritual, and intuitive volitions (upper chakras). Therefore, learning about the characteristics of each chakra can help to soothe disparities and inner turbulence when we plan to act one way but find ourselves powerfully drawn in a different direction.
The Muladhara root chakra is the container for all our previous karma. Karma is a Sanskrit word that means ‘action.’ It relates to the consequences of our previous actions, including from past lifetimes. For every thought, word, and action we have created a seed of karma. In some views, these seeds are said to determine our fortune when they germinate in the present lifetime and even the form of reincarnation that we take.
Other views state that the seeds of our previous karma determine not our fortune, but our internal landscape. This means that if we have acted unskillfully, we will feel the results of this as negative emotions and mindsets. Thus, it is simply us holding ourselves back because of a confused and negative state of mind. Emotions such as guilt, anger, envy, and hatred can stem from previous karma. If we reside mostly in these unhelpful states, we make poor choices and are hindered on the path to peace and liberation, thus creating our own ill-fortune.
Because of the unknown karmic seeds we have planted, we don’t know what will awaken when we open the Muladhara chakra and begin to activate the energy and awaken the slumbering Kundalini Shakti. But, with the light of self-awareness and the warmth of Metta (loving-kindness), we can work to release our past trauma and begin to ascend the chakras towards liberation from suffering.
Symptoms of a Blocked Root Chakra
When the Muladhara root chakra is out of balance, you may feel like you are walking on unstable terrain. Emotionally you may feel insecure, lonely, cynical, and hostile towards other people and life in general.
An underactive root chakra can manifest as fear, especially of loss. You may fear the loss of control, security, career, health, and even the shelter of your home. It can also display as irrational fear for personal safety, and an unrealistic perception of danger and risk. Low Muladhara energy can have you doubting yourself, and feeling nervous and anxious, with low self-esteem. You may experience feelings of shame and have a victim mentality. Other signs of an underactive Muladhara root chakra include apathy, feeling uninspired, and lacking motivation and enthusiasm for life.
If you have an overactive Muladhara root chakra, you may feel stuck in an energy of lack and, as a result, exhibit signs of greed, especially for material things and control. This control sometimes becomes focused on diet, food intake, and body image distortion, resulting in eating disorders. Addictions to money, gambling, sex, drugs, alcohol, and food can occur. You may exhibit characteristics of self-indulgence, laziness, and attachment, and be resistant to change. With extreme overactivity of Muladhara, you may become aggressive and even violent towards others.
Physical signs of a blocked root chakra include fatigue, lower body circulation issues, blood disorders, and issues with elimination, for example, constipation. Additionally, teeth, bones, and nails may show signs of weakness when the Muladhara root chakra is not functioning correctly. Adrenal function may also be impaired, resulting in excess stress hormones and a slower metabolism. You may also experience hip problems, sciatica, or lower back pain.
You may need to balance your root chakra if you notice that you are continually living in survival mode, or preoccupied with the accumulation of material things.
Signs of an Open Muladhara Chakra
When the Muladhara root chakra is functioning correctly, you will feel grounded, connected to nature, secure in your social and family circles, and confident in your ability to withstand the challenges of life.
You can confidently assess risks and feel safe enough to take a leap of faith every once in a while. Life seems to flow effortlessly, and you will feel protected and provided for by the universe. You will know that the universe provides infinite abundance and that there is enough of everything for everybody. In this sense, you will feel like you reside in the energy of abundance rather than lack. You will have a desire to share what you have and practice generosity rather than clinging and attachment.
An open Muladhara chakra helps you to feel connected to your roots. This connection gives you confidence and strength with which to forge ahead without fear. Phobias can lessen or even disappear when the Muladhara chakra is balanced. Worries or anxieties that you once experienced do not seem as important anymore, and as a result, you may experience better quality sleep.
The Muladhara root chakra is associated with the adrenal glands, which produce the stress hormone cortisol and regulate metabolism and weight. Once the balance has been restored in this chakra, you may find that weight loss occurs without a big change in your diet or lifestyle habits. That is if your body has excess weight to lose.
When you have an open Muladhara chakra, you will feel assertive and connected to your life purpose. You will feel excited and enthusiastic about the possibilities that life holds for you, and look forward to each new day. A strong sense of personal identity and self-expression is associated with an open Muladhara chakra, as is physical stamina and vitality.
How to Balance Your Root Chakra
There are many different ways to balance your chakras, and the methods you choose are largely down to personal taste or what you feel drawn to energetically. Crystals, sound, food, color, yoga, meditation, and energy healing are all excellent ways to balance your root chakra.
Let’s look at our top three main ways to create a healthy and open Muladhara chakra that are easy to practice at home. With any of these practices, you can elevate the results by using crystals, colors (clothing and scarves are nice), and essential oils that are associated with Muladhara. See the list above for these.
Meditation and Visualization
Meditation is one of the best ways to balance chakras. With meditation, you can affect your energy system directly. The breath forms a bridge to the prana, and as you slow your breathing and calm your mind, your energy system responds accordingly. For the Muladhara root chakra, any meditations that focus on grounding and connecting you with the earth will help to balance your Muladhara.
Visualization is also effective for creating change in the physical and subtle body. Did you know that your brain cannot tell the difference between something imagined and something real? If you have ever woken in a panic from a nightmare or become anxious and frightened reading a scary book, then you will have experienced this for yourself. The body will release stress hormones and exhibit signs of fear and anxiety, whether the threat is real or imagined. Luckily, it works the same way for positive emotions. Think about someone you love or a time when you felt ecstatic. Your nervous system will respond to these memories, and you will feel calm and happy.
Try this simple meditation to balance your root chakra:
Sound and Mantra
Sound is an excellent way to bring harmony to the chakras because it can directly alter the energetic vibration of the chakra – literally ‘retuning’ it to the correct vibrational frequency.
Singing bowls are incredible chakra instruments. If you want to use singing bowls to retune your Muladhara root chakra, choose one that resonates at Solfeggio frequency 396 Hz as this is the frequency of the Muladhara. You can purchase a bowl you use yourself, which is beneficial because you will benefit from the sound vibrations entering your body through your Muladhara. Or, you can listen to a Muladhara chakra sound bath like this one.
Mantra chanting can be extraordinarily healing and energizing. When you chant, the vibrations ring through your body, harmonizing the energy field. For an open Muladhara chakra, you can chant the Muladhara seed mantra, which is ‘Lam.’ Put some ambient or sound therapy music on and begin as you would for meditation; take some slow deep breaths to center yourself. Then let the mantra rise up out of you in a way that feels good. There is no right or wrong way to practice mantra chanting. If you would like to use a guided mantra recording, this one is nice.
Yoga is fantastic for grounding and helping you access the chakras through the physical postures. Yoga is an energy practice, a meditative practice, and a breath practice too, so it provides an all-in-one holistic healing experience.
Yoga asanas that are particularly good to help balance your root chakra are:
- Baddha Konasana (Butterfly pose)
- Malasana (Garland pose)
- Setu Bandhasana (Bridge pose)
- Chakrasana (Wheel pose)
- Vrksasana (Tree pose
- Tadasana (Mountain pose)
If you would like to access a guided Muladhara root chakra practice, try this one.
We hope that this Muladhara root chakra guide has empowered you to take control of your health and spiritual wellbeing by balancing your Muladhara chakra. You now know the signs of an overactive and underactive Muladhara, as well as some easy techniques you can use to balance your root chakra at home. Please feel free to get in contact with us if you need any further assistance, we love hearing from you and are very happy to help you as you progress on your spiritual journey.