Anahata translates to “unhurt” or “undefeated,” and is the fourth of seven chakras. As the central chakra, with three below it and three above it, the heart chakra functions as the bridge between the upper and lower chakras. As this bridge, the heart chakra is connected to both the body and the mind, bringing emotions and thoughts into balance and dialogue.
Our emotions, especially feelings like love, compassion, and communion with others, are sourced from the heart chakra. Blockages in this chakra can make us feel disconnected or cut off, unable to give or receive love in a life-giving way. Working with this chakra opens us up to healthy relationships and allows us to pursue connection and community.
Location of the Heart Chakra
As its name would suggest, the heart chakra is located in the center of the chest, right where the heart is. Behind the breastbone, this chakra is protected, but it’s also open to the energies that others bring. Try resting your hand gently over your heart and feeling its steady beat, surrounded by the rise and fall of your breaths.
Symbols of the Heart Chakra
The heart chakra is represented by the color green - a life-giving color found frequently in nature. Green is also at the center of the rainbow, combining the brightness of yellow with the coolness of blue. Like its color, the heart chakra is all about balance, bringing together different forces to create harmony.
The heart chakra is associated with the element of air. Light and gentle, this chakra’s energies are sometimes softer than the dynamic, passionate energies found in the lower chakras. Still, it has a quieter power of its own, governing love and compassion.
Working with the Heart Chakra
The heart chakra is where we feel our connections to other people, and where we find the energies to pursue and cultivate healthy relationships. Things like hugging and being held, practicing loving-kindness meditations, and participating in charity or community can help you open and awaken your heart chakra.
Meditating on certain words and concepts can help you connect to your heart chakra. Consider meditating on one of the following mantras:
Visualizations often help in chakra work. When meditating with, or working to awaken, your heart chakra, try imagining green leaves or vines wrapping around you and bringing you into communion with the life-giving force of the earth. Or, picture yourself breathing love “in” to your heart and “out” from your lungs.
Crystals for the Heart Chakra
Fortunately for those seeking to do heart chakra work using healing crystals, there are plenty of lovely green shades to choose from. Jade is an excellent selection, as are Malachite and Amazonite. Since it is also associated with love, the soft pink gem Rose Quartz is often said to be closely connected with the heart chakra as well.
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