Updated: Mar 3, 2020
Sat Nam and Welcome in,
Located behind the throat, the Throat Chakra is governed by the ears for listening, by the vocal cords for making expressive sounds, and by the thyroid gland for growth and maturation.
When the throat chakra is open/unblocked, we feel we can do three things well: Speak out honestly about our thoughts and feelings in a diplomatic and effective manner, listen attentively in such a way as to hear, without prejudice, what is being communicated to us, and turn negative life experiences into personal wisdom and opportunities for growth and maturity.
Feelings of guilt are often responsible for blocking the expression of the Self. When we feel inadequate, we don’t speak. We feel the need to shut up, or if we must speak, we tell a little lie: “Thanks, I’m fine!” We feel as if our opinions are irrelevant, or don’t count, or are unwanted.
Lying blocks this chakra.
Why do we lie? Because somehow, the Truth is going to hurt us.
This is especially difficult for women in our society and I’ll tell you why: the 5th chakra is directly connected with the 2nd chakra, Svadhisthana, where our sexuality lies. Girl’s and women’s
sexuality is domineered, controlled, forced upon, taken away, shamed, used in marketing, played up, played down, played around, overexposed and used to sell absolutely everything. Even yoga. Kundalini Yoga as Taught by Yogi Bhajan is about to go extinct.
Ask just a few women at what age they first were exposed to sexuality against their will, and you will hear the Truth about what it means to grow up female in this world. Most of us are trying to heal from trauma we’ve barely processed, well into motherhood and grandmotherhood.
Little girls are often asked to remain quiet and sit still. And they are often compliant with this request. She is rewarded for this—doing well in school, being picked for jobs, liked by her girl friends, parents, teachers, and by boys, all for being quiet, compliant, and willing to serve. Grown women are willing to serve others every day, every way, for little or no pay, as a matter of course. When this grown woman meets a spiritual teacher...
If we were sexually abused, we are told to never tell, and usually we don’t. Sexuality is then primed and built on a secret and a lie; it is surrounded by guilt and shame, and we feel alone in knowing this pain of sexual congress without consent. Perhaps today, with the Me, Too movement, we can gather some strength in the knowledge that we are not alone, that we are in the majority, and that we are not to blame. Kundalini Yoga in Detroit stands with all abuse survivors.
This blocked second chakra effectively blocks the fifth chakra, of course, which is why they are linked, in my perspective. If our creative sexual desires are thwarted, then our ability to speak out about our unique self-truths will be thwarted. These two chakras are both about creative self-expression; and so they are energetically linked.
Parents may talk to their daughters about physical maturation, but it’s not common to find a parent who will candidly discuss the possible repercussions of being a girl in this world. None of us wants to think our daughter will be a victim! AND, this conversation needs to happen well before puberty. The current view is as early as 5, we should alert our children to The Possibility of Abuse.
You can see why many of us grew up with little understanding about the power of and control of our senses regarding sexuality. It's a forbidden topic. If it weren't, we would not have the specific cultural problems we have with men, women, and sexuality.
These typical life experiences for girls in our society are responsible for shutting down the energies associated with women finding their inner voices, finding out what is true for her, expressing her creativity and passions without fear of reproach, accusation, judgment or outright subjugation. Girls and women are always being asked—TOLD—to sit down and shut up, smile and wait your turn, and let the rest of the world (men) make the big decisions.
I don’t know how little boys and men feel, honestly. But I know how it felt to be a girl and a woman in this culture. It felt like being quietly, softly strangled. And I have a relatively open throat chakra! I had incredible, feministic parents, taught middle school in my 20s, was a psychologist for 30 years, and now teach yoga. I feel comfortable speaking my truth in front of an audience. But I still know the pain of the blockage of this energy of self-expression. It can be a real source of rage in people. We are criticized quite constantly, are we not? For our true thoughts, feelings, actions, words, for everything.
Even when we are just trying to be funny, we are shut down. Talk to any female comedian, she’ll tell you volumes about repression, suppression, and subjugation.
Women in comedy (we are in a golden age of comedy right now—we get our news, our entertainment, our late night rundowns from comics) aren’t the only ones hurting from collective throat chakra imbalances. Political correctness has shut down many men, recently as well, from the Me, Too movement. This is what happens when you try to silence an entire gender for decades. Al Franken, Louis C.K., look at the price you had to pay for what you’ve done; it would have been much easier if women had just been able to voice their truth before they were harassed, right? Voice the Truth without the fear of reprisal, belittlement, marginalization, etc. We don’t like to cause conflict; it’s easier to just remain silent and shut down the self. I’m not saying the Me, Too movement went too far. I’m saying it’s a shame we had to have a movement in the first place. Not only do we have all these wounded women, we also collectively had to grieve about a good senator and a truly gifted comedian.
Let me not get political…the arena of the throat chakra begs me to, but alas this is not the platform for it.
What are some typical symptoms of a blocked throat chakra? Besides saying, "Never mind," and "I'm sorry," all the time--
Throat illness—cancer, soreness, roughness, asthma. Fatigue, anemia, vertigo.
Fear of public speaking, inability to find the words in an impromptu situation. Feeling that others can dominate you in conversation. Being fearful of confrontation in public.
What to do? Some of us will need talk therapy. We have childhood trauma that needs to be brought forward, confronted, dealt with and overcome.
At home, read aloud to yourself, in a low, soothing voice. Sing, sing, sing. Sing your heart out. In the car, in the shower, just sing. Rotate the neck and head once a day for a few minutes. Take long, slow, deep cleansing breaths. For heaven’s sake, take a Kundalini Yoga class! Chances are they will ask you to chant and sing at least once per session!
Here’s a kriya to practice if you want to help heal your throat chakra for free! Practice this in the morning at the same time every day for (insert your number here-challenge yourself!) days.
Special thanks to Shakta Kaur for posting this kriya on her website; here’s the link.