Do you often feel tired, dull or weak? Do you often get sick? Do you have enough energy for long lovemaking or tend to lose your drive early on? These are all signs that your vitality, your basic life energy, is low.
Since tantra is a path of energy, it’s extremely important to run on full power. Vitality is important to feel good and stay healthy, but also so you can practice tantric lovemaking and powerful sublimation.
The yogic tradition provides a clear understanding of where this raw vital force comes from and how we can amplify it. Keep reading to learn cultivate your vitality and enjoy more energy, health and spiritual power.
Let’s meet muladhara chakra
Muladhara chakra is known as the “root chakra,” the psycho-energetic center connected to the earth element within a human being. Located at the base of the spine, it provides vitality and stability, like a battery powering the rest of your system.
Some people are born with a great muladhara: lots of vitality all the time! Some not. So it goes.
But if your muladhara isn’t natural strong, you can develop it with hatha yoga. There are asanas, pranayama techniques and other practices that will build up your root chakra and allow you to channel more vital energy through your being.
Men are more prone to a weak muladhara, so tantric men will work a lot on this chakra to develop the raw power needed for sexual practice.
So as a yogi, muladhara chakra is where you look first whenever there’s a lack of vitality. Besides the yogic approach, through asana and pranayama, here are some areas to consider:
Connection with the earth
Nothing replenishes the earth element in your being like connection with the actual earth.
Most people in Western countries these days live in a way that’s very cut off from this basic energy source. Living in apartment buildings, getting around in cars, walking with rubber and concrete between our feet and Mother Earth…
So get out there in nature. Touch the ground with your bare feet. Lie down in the sand. Find somewhere quiet and sit naked on the dirt. That’s right, put your root chakra right on the ground! The Earth will always replenish us, it’s her gift.
Muladhara chakra loves food. Are you eating enough? And more importantly, are you eating the right things?
So much food today is actually not nourishing at all. Packaged, processed food is not only bad for your body, it’s deficient in prana (life-force). No matter how many chips you eat, you never feel satisfied, right? That’s because they aren’t giving you any of the vital energy you really need.
Eating a balanced plant-based diet of simple, whole foods will do wonders for your vitality. Get plenty of raw fruits and veggies, since these contain the most prana. Avoid overcooking and leftovers, where the prana is depleted.
Root vegetables in particular can support in recharging muladhara, your own root.
Sleep is essential for your vitality. If you skimp on sleep (especially if your astrological sign is air or your Ayurvedic constitution is vata dosha), this feeling of vigor and wellbeing is the first thing to go.
It is of course important to get enough sleep, but even more important to sleep in periods that correspond to your sleep cycles. Each cycle is roughly 90 minutes, varying by individual. Waking up in the middle of a cycle will leave you more tired than if you had woken up between cycles, even if it means getting up an hour earlier.
It also matters when you sleep. Going to sleep before 10pm is ideal, since during this time kapha energy (nourishing earth/water energy) is predominant. After 10pm, the energy goes to pitta (fire/water), more active and using up energy rather than replenishing it, and to vata (air/ether) late in the night.
This is why many creative people love the night – so much mental openness and creativity! – but it’s healthier to tap into the revitalizing kapha field when possible.
Sometimes a feeling of heaviness or tiredness isn’t caused by a lack of vital energy, but by the fact that your vital energy isn’t moving.
Energy stuck in the lower chakras, especially muladhara, can bring a sense of inertia. You’ll see this often in people with a lot of vitality (especially earth signs) but without so much of the fire element. This is just part of the nature of the earth element: solid, heavy, immovable… both its charm and its challenge!
The solution is to bring the fire! Working on manipura chakra, connected to the fire element, turns up the heat in your system and gets everything moving. It’s the element of dynamism and transformation, that will burn all that heavy energy and turn it into activity or send it upwards to the higher chakras. (Hence why it’s so important in tantric yoga.)
Asanas for manipura and sublimation practices like uddiyana bandha or nauli kriya are perfect for this.
Another possibility not related to muladhara is that your lack of vitality is actually a lack of enthusiasm.
Can you remember a time in your life when you were all fired up about some project? You maybe had so much passion to channel into it, you almost didn’t need to rest at all to feel vitalized and full of energy.
So if now you’re feeling dull, check if there isn’t something more significant missing in your life – some greater cause that moves and motivates you.
That greater cause doesn’t have to be saving the world all by yourself. It’s whatever sparks a fire in your heart, whatever gives you a reason to feel joy getting out of bed in the morning. Each of us has our own dharma, our own role to play in this great drama of life.
These days, when most of the world is on standby, it’s a better time than ever to look inwards and discover your most authentic calling. When you’re following this, you’ll always have the energy you need. It’s like instead of running off you own little battery, you plug yourself straight into the power source.
If you want to dive deep into the authentic teaching of taditional hatha yoga take a look at our 4 weeks Yoga Immersion Teacher Training Course starting November 18th in Mexico.