The Root chakra is considered the prime source of human power, but that’s true only for men
If you’ve been taught that your spiritual power base is down at the bottom, the Root chakra that’s associated with grounding and support, you’ve been misled.
For those who female-identify, your crucial power base is actually the second chakra. This became clear to energy-worker and author Lisa Erickson when she began reading the original teachings of spiritual and energy masters, not the versions passed along in the West. “When the teachings came over, to make it easier to understand, they gave the most general version, which meant defaulting to the male energy anatomy,” Erickson says.
But the old masters long knew that the second chakra, known as the Sacral chakra, is actually the source of strength for women. “If we’re not attending to the needs of this power base, we’re not owning all of our power,” Erickson came to understand.
Erickson knows of what she speaks. This 30-year-meditator and energy worker has specialized in women’s energetics and female sexual-trauma healing for nearly two decades. She recently wrote a book on the topic, Chakra Empowerment for Women.
I spoke with Erickson to learn more about her insights and her methods for activating this source of female power, a process she terms the Sacral Lotus.
Meryl: Why do you think females are not attending to our crucial Sacral chakra?
Lisa: As a culture, we don’t sufficiently empower meaningful life events that surge from this source — menstruation, pregnancy, menopause…. Nor do we highly value the qualities that flow from it, like passion, adaptability, and inspiration.
By contrast, our culture is overly attuned to Root chakra energies like material success, accomplishment, physical strength, and appearance.
Meryl: Can you point to times when we have come from our Sacral energies, so we know what it feels like?
Lisa: When you see a gorgeous work of art and feel uplifted, that’s your second chakra energy. Every time your senses tell you that an ocean view is magnificent or a juicy peach tastes so sweet, or even when you have delicious sex, you’re in the throes of the Sacral.
Creative inspiration also comes from this place, such as when you are inspired by an idea or a person. You may think that a thought or artistic vision pops up in your head or comes from your heart, but when you tune in more deeply, you can generally sense that the energy is rising from deep in your pelvis.
Meryl: What are some of the problems we experience by diminishing this source of female personal power?
If we’re not attending to the needs of this power base, we’re not owning a certain part of ourselves. For example, if we view our menstrual cycle as problematic or something that needs to be minimized, we’re missing out on the power of those cycles that women in other cultures have known for thousands of years. For women who’ve experienced sexual trauma, shame may especially prevent us from fully owning these energies.
The women I work with are generally dealing with issues like repressed creativity, unnecessary rigidity, self-doubt, or insufficient self-care. Some even have physical diseases of the reproductive or other lower-abdominal organs, or have painful menstruation or an especially difficult menopausal transition. Empowering their Sacral chakra helps all these things.
Meryl: You’ve created a series of exercises, which you call Empowerments, for each chakra. How did you develop these?
Lisa: I’ve trained in several healing modalities, including with Cyndi Dale, and studied everything from shamanism to Kundalini meditation to energy work systems like Donna Eden’s and Barbara Brennan’s. I’ve also trained in trauma healing and mindfulness instruction. Based on what I’ve learned from all of them, plus my own observations and trial and error with clients over the years, I’ve created these Empowerment exercises, which are laid out for each chakra in my book.
Meryl: What are the steps you advise for activating the important Sacral Lotus?
Lisa: I recommend a 10-step process, but not every step will resonate with each person. After you try it a few times, notice which aspects speak to you more and primarily do those. For instance, some people are more into the affirmations, while others prefer the imagery.
To begin, sit crossed-legged on the floor or couch in a quiet, private place, and take a few calming breaths.
Now place your hands over your lower pelvis below your belly button and breathe into your hands several times.
Begin to visualize a radiant, amber-colored lotus facing upward in your lower torso. Sit with this for a while, playing with the size and shape of the petals or the hues of amber to find what you most love.
As you imagine the energy of this lotus as fluid and moving, sway your body a bit. You may keep your hands on your lower abdomen or rest them on your knees. Picture the roots of the lotus plant reaching down through your tailbone and into the earth, so it feels anchored. Now visualize rays of light in amber, gold, and orange radiating up from the lotus throughout your torso and out the top of your head.
After a minute or so of doing this, recall past times when you have felt Sacral energy (the creativity that sparked a painting or poem, the birth of your child, sexual pleasure…). Think about one or more scenes until the associated feelings rise up within you. Visualize this feeling as coming from your Sacral Lotus.
Now turn to affirmations linked with this Empowerment, saying each one to three times. I recommend things like:
I am creative.
I go with the flow.
I am a sensual being.
I am passionate.
I am inspired.
I am amazing.
All of this should take around five minutes, but you can do longer if you’d like. If you find your mind has wandered during the exercise, recreate the imagery of the lotus, roots, and upward light (and swaying if you desire).
Finally, take a “snapshot memory” of how this feels.
Meryl: Are we doing something with this “snapshot memory” later?
Lisa: Yes. An important purpose of all the Empowerments is to enable you to recall the sensation and tap the chakra’s power throughout your day.
After you’ve done the exercise a few times, bringing up the memory will be easy. You just flash quickly on the visual of the lotus and the feeling from the memory. This will give you access to your Sacral energies.
This memory might be helpful during a break in an office meeting where you’re trying to brainstorm, or before giving a talk when you’re reaching for inspiration, for example.
It’s also valuable when you’re having a hard time adapting to a change in your day or are feeling frustrated by a circumstance like being stuck in traffic.
And, of course, it’s great before an emotionally or sexually intimate encounter.
Meryl: What’s been your experience with women who’ve connected with their Sacral chakra in these ways?
Lisa: The women I work with find this often supports the release of things they don’t want in their lives, like feelings of unworthiness (even ones that haven’t been consciously held), trying too hard to please others, or conforming to expectations that don’t feel right.
Many find their creativity suddenly blossoms. You get intuitions you hadn’t previously experienced, or have prophetic dreams. More than a few begin owning their voice in a whole new way, especially in midlife.
Bringing forth our female energy as a power helps in so many parts of our lives. The things we think of as female traits, like empathy or our collaborative abilities, all emerge from this Sacral chakra. Once we own it and allow it to flow, so many parts of our life improve.
Lisa Erickson is a teacher and chakra-based energy worker. Her book, Chakra Empowerment for Women: Self-Guided Techniques for Healing Trauma, Owning Your Power & Finding Overall Wellness, was published by Llwellyn. Learn more about Lisa at EnlightenedEnergetics.com.
Meryl Davids Landau is the author of the award-winning mindfulness/yoga novel Warrior Won and her prior novel, Downward Dog, Upward Fog. She writes about spirituality, lifestyle, health, and more for many national magazines and websites. Learn more about Meryl at MerylDavidsLandau.com.