The energy centres or chakras, which are placed along the spine, are at the core of our subtle, spiritual being. And the sixth of these chakras, the Agnya, is situated in the middle of the brain. It is the gateway to the seventh and last energy centre, the Sahasrara Chakra. It is the penultimate step on the journey to our self-realisation, our yoga, our union with Divinity.
It is the Kundalini, the life force within each one of us, rising from its coils in the sacrum bone at the base of the spine, rising up through each of the energy centres and eventually piercing through the fontanelle bone at the top of the head, that brings about our enlightenment, our moksha, our self-realisation. And to our great good fortune, Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi, the founder of Sahaja Yoga, has devised a very simple way for us to take this wonderful leap forward in our evolution, this realization of the self, this manifestation of the spirit, this ability to feel the very essence of our being on our central nervous system. It is through self-realisation that we gain sweet meditation, health, well-being, peace and joy – our oneness with the spirit.
The Agnya Chakra is situated at the crossing of the optic thalamus (the pineal and pituitary glands). It influences, and is influenced by, what we see, what we hear, what we think.
The day of the week that the Agnya chakra is associated with is Sunday, its colour is white, its planet is the sun, its element is light, its gemstone is diamond, its place on the hand – where we can feel if the Agnya energy centre is clear – is the ring finger, and the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ is directly related to the opening up of this chakra.
Like all the other chakras, the Agnya has a right, a left and a central aspect. Planning, over-organising, dominating others, can take us further and further into the tensions, anger, even violence, of the right. Memories, conditioning, over-emotionalism, lack of self-confidence can take us further into the depression, insecurity, pain and fear of the left. Self-realisation, meditation and the resulting development of our balance, detachment and knowledge can bring us into the joys of the centre.
The right channel, the channel of action, with its potential for out-looking and on-going demands and activity, eventually ends up in the brain area as the ego – a balloon of out-turning self-centredness. And the left channel, the channel of desire, with its potential for insecurity, fear and self-harm, eventually ends up in the brain area as the superego – a balloon of in-turning self-centredness.
To gain our self-realisation the Kundalini must thread its way between these balloons of ego and superego. It must draw them back into the centre and establish a balance so that it can rise and take the last step to the Crown chakra, the Sahasrara, to attain yoga, the union with Divinity.
Thoughts come from either the left side or the right side – they are concerned with the past or the future. That’s all thoughts are. So, the more we think, the more we are dragged out of the centre into what-has-been or what-is-to-come. A hundred years ago western societies tended to be oriented towards the left. Conditioning ruled attitudes, patriotism was basic to politics, everyone tended to know, and defend, their particular place in the social scheme of things. Nowadays, however, the pressures are very much from the right. We are encouraged to get out and buy. Everybody must purchase things to sustain the nation’s wealth. We must plan for the future. Newspapers want us to think about things, opinionate.
Often our thinking pattern itself moves from right to left, even back again. We remember something from the left, move into the right to plan some action to change the situation, then move back into the left to worry about it.
With this thinking pattern there is a tiny gap between each thought and the next, a quiet split-of-a-second thoughtlessness - not of the past, not of the future, but of the here and now. And it is in this silence between thoughts that the spirit speaks to us. This is where creativity is at its most vital and revealing. This is where peace and joy exist.
Through meditation we can lengthen this split-of-a-second thoughtlessness into an ever-present now, and through this meditation, gain the balance of knowledge, perception, detachment, love.
How? How do we clear the distractions of left and right out of our Agnya and gain this valuable meditative state? Well, we can light a candle and place it on something so that it is behind the head during meditation. This helps to burn away the mental garbage. We also have - as Shri Mataji has told us – a very useful mantra: the Lord’s Prayer.
Who art in Heaven,
Hallowed be Thy name.
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done
On earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread
And forgive us our trespasses
As we forgive those who trespass against us,
And lead us not into temptation
But deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the Kingdom, the Power and the Glory
For ever and ever.
Among the most important sections of this prayer is, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done.” If we say that, from the depths of our being, we have to humble down and see ourselves as we are, a part of God’s creation. Another very important section is, “we forgive those who trespass against us.” Forgiveness clears away all the resentment, jealousy and hate that can so harm us. Forgiveness is another very valuable means of clearing out the Agnya Chakra.
So, saying the Lord’s Prayer helps us to gain the humility and the freedom from obsessions which allows us to clear the “gunk” out of the Agnya Chakra and open ourselves up to the spirit.
So, by using the light of a candle, by saying the mantra of the Lord’s Prayer and by forgiving, we can gain compassion and love, which are the main qualities of the Agnya Chakra. From the balance of the centre, we can draw appropriate action and dynamism from the right side, and memory and emotion from the left, allowing the Kundalini to flow freely and grant us oneness with the spirit.