With October here, I got to thinking about what is really scary in life. Wanna know what I came up with? Living uninspired. Living a complacent, mediocre, uninspired life terrifies me; feeling “stuck” is tortuous; and being afraid to go out on limb when it’s the limb of life that beckons you, sounds soul-crushing.In the last newsletter, I wrote about sincerity and how living authentically creates inspiration within us and allows us to both inspire and be inspired by others. This week, I’d like us to think about empathy, the second trait in the SEMPER Wheel and (not-so-coincidentally) related to the second chakra. In a nut shell, the second chakra ties very closely to our strengths and weaknesses in relationships with others, and, I believe, a vital part of successful relationship is having a capacity to empathize with others.
So, I’ll give you a brief background on the second chakra (that little orange circle below). Keep in mind, we’re only skimming the surface here…
The second chakra is the swadhisthana – or sacral – chakra called so because it is located in the sacrum. It is considered to correspond to the hormone producing sexual organs, as well as the large intestine, lower vertebrae, pelvis, appendix, bladder, and hip area. The mental and emotional issues associated with this energy area are blame and guilt, money and sex, power and control, creativity, and ethics and honor in relationships. Physical dysfunctions that may result from an imbalance in the sacral chakra are chronic lower back pain, sciatica, obgyn problems, pelvic/low back pain, sexual potency, and urinary problems. Emotionally it governs joy, and spiritually it governs enthusiasm.If you are already familiar with the chakra system, you probably associate the second chakra primarily with control and sex, but there is a lot more to it than that. It is about your sense of self (see the tie-in to “sincere”? 😉 ), and since our sense of self directly affects our relationships with others, an understanding of the second chakra also relates to the bonds we form with people (ergo “empathy”).
Fears and weaknesses stemming from this chakra occur when there has been a betrayal, abandonment, or literal or metaphorical rape. For instance, being a survivor of Military Sexual Trauma myself, and working with many others who are as well, I see now why I probably had so many intestinal issues as well as pelvic and low back pain for so many years after I was raped. Of course, I could explain away some of the pain by the intense training I performed in the military or sports, but the physical exercise never accounted for all the agony and many times felt mysterious to me that I was in so much more discomfort in those particular areas compared to my peers. After years of yogic, spiritual, nutritional, and physiological study, I now know the root problem of that pain as it relates to my second chakra…and oh by the way, as I’ve healed emotionally, most of that pain has subsided entirely. This seemingly miraculous healing has taken place after years of being told by (western med) doctors that I would carry that physical pain around my whole life and there was no real explanation or solution to it. But it didn’t have to be a mystery, and I didn’t have to be laden with pain for the rest of my life! I’m living proof that you can change that, and I hope to inspire others to start that healing journey, too.
Anyway, moving right along here 🙂 When the second chakra is strong and balanced, though, we find people are financially stable, resilient, willing to take risks, and have good decision-making ability. On the other end of the spectrum, for instance, despite there being “damage” to my second chakra, I still have many strengths associated with it in my resiliency and willingness to take risks. You, too, don’t have to be stymied by your weaknesses; capitalize on and encourage your strengths while you work through the broken areas. We are none of us just one thing – we are all the yin and yang, and because of the duality that swirls within us all, that means that there will always be the good and bad, the strong and weak, the light and the dark. As I’ve said about other types of “journeys,” I encourage you not to begrudge the path to a deeper understanding of your chakra system (whether you think of it in terms of chakras, spirit, faith, personality, past, or whatever). Embrace it, learn from it, grow from it, and don’t judge yourself or others as you or they embark on that voyage.
After all, “relationships are essentially spiritual messengers…We can more easily see the symbolic value of our relationships when we release our compulsion to judge what and who has value and instead focus on honoring the person and the task with which we are involved.” Dr Carolyn Myss. And does this sound just a smidge like empathy to you? It sure does to me 😉
Can you see how the second chakra ties into your relationships? Your business? Your physical state? If you had a fuller understanding of your “second chakra issues,” do you think that would empower you to be a better empathizer?
ABOUT SARAH: I empower people who have experienced a traumatic or difficult life event, or just feel plain stuck in a rut, get unstuck and just roll with it so that they can create a ridiculously happy, healthy, successful life of purpose. Through my leadership experience as a Marine Corps Intelligence Officer with two tours to Iraq and a five-time member and captain of the Military Olympic Women’s Soccer Team, health and wellness expertise as a certified yoga instructor and integrative nutrition coach, as well as my life-experience as a repeat trauma survivor of being hit by a car, struck by lightning, surviving a devastating car crash, being raped by a fellow Marine, and suffering more than a dozen concussions/TBIs, I inspire and instruct others to be healthy in order to heal and guide them to move forward in their life with joy and appreciation. (Phew! I know that sentence was a mouthful! haha)
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