Chakra is the word used to describe energy centers in the human body. This term is traditionally associated with philosophies, religions and systems of medicine in the Orient, but is increasingly a term used in conjunction with the scientific study of the aura and of the other human energy functions. Often, the concept of the chakra is as a manifestation of the aura. Many times in such research, the eastern terms for energy functions are used without association with a particular belief system, since Western science does not have usable terms. This can make such energy systems seem quite mystical. the energy system known as Reiki does not refer to chakras in its teachings directly, however, I use the term as a "landmark" on the body.
The energy centers, usually seen as 7 in number, have been traditionally associated with certain human qualities or functions. Briefly, the chakras are:
They are generally seen as whirling vortices of energy, in various colors. Dysfunction is perceived as a changed rotation or limitation of rotation, along with changes in color.
Various religious traditions have used the understanding of chakras or their equivalent as a way of expanding consciousness or healing. Some traditions have used other names for centers of energy, especially in China: