In yogic philosophy, the Fifth Chakra, or energy center in the body, is the Vishuddha Chakra, or Throat Chakra. It is located in the area of the throat and neck and is associated with knowledge and communication.
The word Vishuddha translates as “The Pure Place.” When we look at the idea of communication as “speaking our truth,” we have to qualify that speech. We should always speak our truth, our satya, but we should also make an effort to speak that truth with wisdom and compassion.
Maya Angelou once said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people never forget how you made them feel.”
Communication lies at the very heart of human existence. It is one of the few things that separates us from the animals, that allows us to live socially. It can be one of our most powerful tools for good, or for evil. The truth may set you free, but truth without compassion or mindfulness can shackle us. An open and balanced Throat Chakra allows us to communicate, to better our human condition and to solve problems. A blocked chakra can lead to hurt feelings, misunderstandings, and downright distrust and anger. We likely all know someone who often says too much, and someone else who says too little. Both of these behaviors indicate a blocked throat chakra.
But speaking your truth is not even half of communication; we must also learn to listen. When we dominate, or talk over others, we are stifling communication. Listening allows us to learn. Likewise, not speaking your mind when you need to can be just as stifling as saying too much.
Recently, I came across a problem in my neighborhood where the HOA had a problem with a tenant. Instead of anyone on the HOA board speaking to the tenant, certified letters were sent and a situation that could have been dealt with in a neighborly fashion began to spiral out of control. Sometimes, not saying anything at all is worse than speaking our truth.
If we want to improve our human condition, we must learn to communicate. I admit that I do not always temper my truth with wisdom or compassion. Sometimes in a moment of anger or frustration, I say things without considering the impact on others. As a yogi, I try to make these mistakes less often, and when I do make them, I try to correct them.
If we all try to communicate more mindfully, we can learn to speak truth to power. We can, though communication, empower our relationships and better our communities.
When we speak truth to power, when we communicate with wisdom and compassion, we become inspirational and can communicate more freely and truthfully.
Sat Nam. (Truth is my identity).
For more information on the chakras, visit www.dancingdogsyoga.com/aboutus/resources/
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