CHAPTER 3: MANIPURA – PERSONAL POWER AND HORSES

A FOCUS ON PERSONAL POWER

THIRD CHAKRA – MANIPURA

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Manipura = “Resplendant gem”

Colour : Yellow

Scent : Ylang Ylang, Rose

Gemstones : Yellow gemstones for this Chakra are Amber, Citrine, Yellow Calcite, Fluorite, Golden Beryl, Golden Yellow Topaz, Cat’s Eye, Yellow Celestite, Yellow Jade, Golden Tiger Eye, Lemon Chrysoprase, Yellow Danburite, Iron Pyrite, Yellow Garnet, Yellow Jasper, Yellow Kunzite, Yellow Muscovite, Yellow Sapphire, Yellow Tourmaline and Yellow Rhodonite 

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RETREAT BASICS FOR MANIPURA

At this retreat we will be discussing the Third Chakra or Manipura which is Sanskrit meaning “resplendent gem”.  It is our center of human personal power and the last of the earth bound Chakras.

The horses will work with us to demonstrate how expressions of personal power can be interpreted by and through the subtler bodies of energy which we refer to as chakras. Horses are the first to sense in which way you carry your belief about your personal power. They read everything about you, in one brilliant instinctive shot.

Based on their experience with humans and their experiences with the kind of energy you bring with you, horses will size you up in one second flat. As prey animals this is their primary survival mechanism – evaluating quickly and efficiently who is friend or foe.  And like all prey animals who rely on quick flight instinct to survive, horses seem sometimes a little paranoid but it is the quickest and the most instinctive of course, that will survive.  So another lesson we learn from horses is to be very conscious of our intentions and body language when we enter into any communication, be it with a horse or human. From within, your sense of power is exuded by the way you present yourself both physically an energetically to the horse and sub-consciously to humans. Horses are more immediately aware of you because they are present in this moment, not caught up in past or future thinking.  Because horses already speak an ancient and subtle language with every part of their bodies, they integrate this understand of body, intention an energy into their evaluation.

This doesn’t necessarily mean a horse will automatically be nervous with you if you are nervous with it. Horses give you indications WAY before they act in an aggressive manner, and even this they only do when they feel cornered or unable to flee if necessary. I call it Standard Equine Claustrophobia.

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I often see people when entering the round pen who are not accustomed to being around horses with their shoulders slumped forward, like a subconscious wish to protect their center from what can be a daunting experience given the sheer size and for most people, their behavior which can seem very alien at first.  However, what the horse is most adept at sensing is the intention you bring with you into your interaction.

Many people ask me if horses will react aggressively if they bring fear with them. Horses are not predators – they are prey. Therefore, if you bring fear, they sense it as a type of insecurity, and they may find they want to move away from you, unsure whether you are the source of the insecurity or not. It is not the normal behaviour of a horse to lash out to protect itself, except in very rare and specific instances, such as stallion territorial behaviour.

Ears pinned flat on the head are a good indication that your horse is insecure and doesn’t want you close. Never try to give a horse affection when it is in this state.  In order to show your horse SECURITY you have to demonstrate leadership to him, and that sometimes means being aware of fear, but not allowing it to make choices for you!

In terms of horse behaviour, one with an unbalanced third chakra is constantly displaying insecurity. It is hyper reactive and overly aware of its environment. It fears that it is powerless; and so is constantly seeking to avoid or evade something. This would be a very difficult horse to ride or train.  A good horse for riding is one that has a balanced sense of its partnership with humans.  Horses that are well-balanced in the third chakra carry themselves well and are not in constant need of aids from the rider, as they tend to be more in the flow of the interaction between the two, and are less absorbed by paranoid vigilant watch which comes from a fearful sense of powerless over the environment.

Humans are the same way, and horses are a very effective way of, excuse the irony – putting the cart before the horse. Sometimes, we can become more conscious of our behaviour before actually changing our mind about how we feel about something. In other words, we can ACT AS IF we have personal power, to help us discover where our true power lies.

In working on our third chakra, horses encourage us to have to EXUDE this outwardly before we may completely feel it inwardly.

horse_training_bottomROUND PEN EXERCISE:

In this exercise, we enter the round pen with a horse, mindful of the sensations in our bodies.  Identifying any tension, we release it to our breath, before our interaction.  Then, we release the loving energy in the center of our being, to the horse.  At this moment, we are not allowing our fears or insecurities to make a choice for us. This is very powerful and empowering all at once.  We ask our body to exude a balanced sense of personal power, perhaps sometimes before we actually feel that authentically within ourselves.

In this way, we create a new experience for our brains.  A new neural pathway, where we have taken over possession of our conscious intention and maintained a different reaction to a fear response.  This is a very healthy thing for everyone to do.

You can take this new way of understanding an old feeling out with you into your non-retreat world in so many ways!

Your boss calls you into her office, and you feel a terrible foreboding.  Maybe she didn’t like that last report? Maybe you are the next in the lineup of layoffs?  Who knows?  But often we are quick to assume a negative outcome at such times.

Yu can use your retreat experience to change the way you perceive stress and anxiety in your life.  Instead of being anxious or worried,  you can find where the feeling of anxiety exists in your body – in your solar plexus third chakra. Place your dominant hand on your  this place and breathe in through that space, remembering to place your body in the same confident way that you had it with the horse you first met.  Your shoulders proud and back. Your head high. And smile. It releases happy endorphins in your brain. Recalling your experience will help to trigger the same positive response feeling as when you were here at the retreat in connection to the horses. Every one of our experiences is recorded in our bodies. It is up to us to access that and use it to help us negotiate the waters of our lives more effectively and joyfully.chakra-3

The flow and health of the third chakra can directly impact your ability to put good ideas and plans into action.  If this Chakra is healthy and spinning freely, you are making creative decisions and feel as though your choices move you forward.  You take good care of yourself in body mind and spirit.  You are enthusiastic about your life and proactive about the positive choices you make on your own behalf.  You demonstrate a good balanced sense of self.

The Manipura Chakra lies in the triangular niche at the base of your rib cage – the solar plexus or zyphoid process, in fancy medical circles.

You can visualize it as a yellow spinning orb of energy, rotating often they say in a clockwise direction. The speed or fluidity of the spinning is our concern here. If it is not flowing as it should, this is when we encounter problems such as feeling powerless in our lives or relationships, powerless over our choices and circumstances. We forget that everything is a choice, when this energetic center is not spinning as it should.

There are things you can do to increase the flow and vibrancy of each chakra.

~ Wear the colour represented by the chakra – any kind of yellow will do.

~ eat foods that support the nutritional requirements needed to optimize this chakra:

Granola and Grains: pastas, breads, cereal, rice’s, flax-seed, sunflower seeds, etc.
Dairy: milk, cheeses, yogurt
Spices: ginger, mints (peppermint, spearmint, etc.), Melissa, chamomile, turmeric, cumin, fennel

SCENTS: ~ surround yourself with scents such as Ylang Ylang and Rose

Here are some quick questions to ask yourself regarding your third chakra:

1 – STRONGLY DISAGREE 2 – DISAGREE 3 – NEUTRAL 4- AGREE 5- ABSOLUTELY

  • Are you easily      irritated – do you have an explosive temper?
  • Have you found that you have an Inability to prosper, no matter how hard you try?
  • Do you      tend to prosper at the expense of others?
  • Have you      ever made yourself feel better by putting another person down?
  • Do you have      difficulty in taking responsibility for your actions and the consequences?
  • Do you alternate      between feeling immensely powerful, only to feel like a victim the next moment?
  • Do you      lack willpower?
  • Have you ever      suffered from ulcers or diabetes (sugar imbalances)?
  • Do you ask      yourself why      am I here (in this life)?
  • Do you like yourself?
  • Are you nervous in social groups?
  • Do you think people believe      negative things about you?
  • Finish this sentence: “when I      grow up I want to….”
  • Are you self-motivated?
  • Do you achieve most of your      goals?
  • Do you      have a strong drive to live and do you feel that you have a right to      exist?
  • Are      you connected to your emotional self and do you understand that feeling      and expressing your emotions are your right?
  • Did      your family of origin make you feel capable of doing anything?
  • Does      your belief system include knowing that a higher power exists and do you      use your personal power to openly discuss your beliefs
  • Do you      always communicate your inner truths and are you open and honest with      others regardless of the situation?
  • Are      you afraid if you act confidently that others will think you are “full of      ego”?
  • Do you know what you want?
  • Have you ever suffered with      anxiety?

1-   Meditate and colour one of the Mandalas below as you focus on these questions and see what answers come to you.

2-   Answer the questions using the numbered scale. Don’t overanalyze! Your past is only a reference point for current understanding.

3-   Choose 2 or more questions that resonate as important to you – write on these in your journal. Share what you want with group.

4-   Share with (your) group. (can be done in circle or individuals groups.

It’s all about personal power – which begins with caring for yourself. How well you take care of you, is very relevant in this chakra.  Your ability to shine forth is directly impacted by how much energy and intention you have invested into developing yourself from the.

Power is defined as “the ability to influence people”. (wiki).

By maximizing the flow of energy in this central portion of your body, you release the possibility of blockage and are able to enter the higher realms of subtle understanding and wisdom brought to us by the study of chakras and the lessons of the horse.

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