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Anahata Chakra

Anahata Chakra is one of the vital centres in the body, in yogic and tantric practices. The Anahata Chakra is situated in the heart, and hence it is the heart lotus. Ahata means hit. Sound, which is the result of vibrations produced when one object hits against another, and is heard with the ears, is ahata. This lotus is called anahata, or the reverse of ahata, because in it a sound arises by the practice of pranayama, or yogic breathing, which is not the product of the same process of one object hitting against another.

The heart lotus is represented by twelve red petals with letters from 'ka' to 'tha' of the Sanskrit alphabet on them, implying that the faculty of cognition can be express in twelve distinct ways. The deity of this lotus is Kakini. Within this lotus is a triangle with which Bhagavan Shiva is place in shining golden hues, in the form of a phallus, with the crescent moon on his head. One idea associated with the lotuses, expressed in Hatha Yoga texts, is that with prolonged practice of breath control, the breath enters the inner passage of the spinal cord. When it is silenced inside akasha (the open space) within a lotus, certain unusual powers arise.

When the breath is silenced inside the heart, the adept starts hearing anahata-dhvani (‘un-hit’ sounds) and it is from this experience that this lotus derives its name. The knot of ignorance, called brahma granthi, is opened as a result of the absorption of the mind in hearing this sound and this heralds the beginning of enlightenment which ultimately leads to emancipation.