Manipura Chakra - Solar Plexus Chakra

Commentary: The Solar Plexus Chakra is located deep in the abdomen, at the level of the navel, close to the spinal column. The corresponding physical location is the solar plexus (the neural node that boxers often try to hit with their punches to the body). According to several authors the name means something like 'Lotus Jewel', but that appears to be a well distributed error, because in Sanskrit mani means 'holy' and pura means 'town' - almost every Indian state has one or more Manipurs. The name obviously refers to the inner city: the locus where so many forces come together, and so much power is radiated out.

Personal aspects: This is the chakra of inner power, also referred to as the chakra of respect, the chakra of the will - the will in that deeper sense of the philosopher Schopenhauer, as the directive power that shapes our entire existence. The Solar Plexus Chakra is the seat of our inner fire, of the immense power with which we impress our essence on the world, and of our desire to be respected for our contributions. In emergencies a properly functioning Solar Plexus Chakra can direct effective application of violence. A mother protecting her child from an attacker, a soldier fighting to hold an untenable position in defense of the fatherland - their unstoppable aggression wells up from this chakra, from this centre of neural coordination. In quieter times the Solar Plexus Chakra spins without attracting attention, like a ship's engine at cruising speed, but when the need arises its surging power can be called upon instantly. Negative development: Inflation of ego, egomania. Dependence on others' opinion and judgment, shame, disappointment in self and others, blind rage. Attenuation leads to loss of direction, a tendency to follow others unthinkingly, life at other people's leash, a certain vagueness and futility.

Corporate aspects: This is the chakra of energy and ambition, of the drive to 'do better', to make ones mark. The Solar Plexus Chakra is like a nuclear power plant: when properly managed and used carefully (modestly, without making excessive demands), it serves as a long-lasting source of plentiful energy. It is also the chakra of professionalism - particularly in the sense of respectable performance, best practices, knowing your trade; but also in the sense of efficiency, productivity, quality control, adherence to standards, certification, ISO 9001. Negative development: Lust for power, severity, authoritarian behaviour, bureaucracy, hardening, fury-fed aggression and destruction.

Challenge (dilemma to be reconciled): To assert yourself without overpowering others.