Manipura chakra, the solar plexus chakra located at the navel, is associated with the color yellow and with the fire element—it is our power center. The qualities of Manipura are self-esteem, power, gut feelings, ego, and confidence. From Manipura chakra we develop our sense of belonging in the world. We become empowered when this chakra is in balance. Nothing can hold us back when Manipura is aligned. Through Manipura we learn to claim our power.
The gland associated with Manipura is the pancreas. The pancreas secretes digestive enzymes and insulin, assisting digestion and the regulation of blood sugar, which fuels every cell in the body. Manipura thus governs the conversion of food into energy. This is an important physical source of our power.
When Manipura is imbalanced, we are either under confident or over confident. We either lack energy, or have too much energy. When Manipura is balanced, we feel empowered in just the right ways. We walk through life assured of our abilities. We feel strong.
The Prana Vayu, or quality of life force, governing Manipura is samana—the collection and concentration of prana at the navel center so that our energies empower. Samana helps us to collect our prana so that it can be used efficiently. The mantra RAM may be chanted to bring about the powerful qualities of Manipura. Asana, or postures, that serve to balance Manipura include Sun Salutations, Warrior postures, core-strengthening postures like Navasana (boat pose), and Breath of Fire pranayama.
When you experience low energy and lack of empowerment, harness your power by working with the Manipura chakra. By reconnecting to your power source, you will rebuild your energy so that it can be redistributed effectively. Bring your attention to your core with each exhalation. Engage the uddiyana bandha by drawing the navel in toward the spine upon each exhalation. Feel your energy collect at your power center, and from there may you move in confidence.