Vishuddha: What’s Especially Pure about the Fifth Chakra

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Practice with Rachel (Sat Siri) on Wanderlust TV with her new series, Root to Rise: Journey Through the Chakras which includes a companion series of free 10-minute self-reflection & journaling classes. A free 14-day WLTV trial allows you to take the 7-part series, as well as sample the thousands of yoga, meditation and movement classes on WLTV, which includes a vast library of Kundalini classes from Rachel Dougherty.


In Sanskrit, the throat chakra is called the vishuddha chakra. Shuddhi translates as “pure,” and vi strengthens the word; therefore, vishuddha means especially pure. This points to the spiritual understanding that our words and our communication can be powerfully uplifting and healing when we speak the truth.

The fifth chakra is your center of expression. Do you feel heard? Do you feel like your words and your views matter? Did you grow up in a house and environment where you were listened to? Was it safe to express your feelings? Were your needs and requests responded to? All of this adds to—or subtracts from—the health of this chakra.

A Balanced Throat Chakra (Vishuddha)

If your throat chakra is underactive or overactive, you may experience challenges communicating. When it is underactive, you may behave in an excessively shy manner: withdrawn, or have difficulty expressing yourself. And if it is overactive, you may be gossipy and have a tendency to interrupt others when they are speaking.

I was a dancer for many years, from the moment I began at 6 years of age, until my retirement at 28, I expressed my emotions, my stress, and my innermost feelings through my body.

When I started teaching yoga, I felt so vulnerable. Expressing myself through my words and speaking in front of others made me feel like I was naked. My voice would shake, sweat would pour from my armpits, and my hands would become clammy. Public speaking just felt so exposing to me.

Cut to a year later, when—after chanting mantra consistently, teaching daily, and facing my doubts and insecurities—I got asked to speak at a women’s charity event. And then I got asked again, and again to speak at events. At first, it was unbelievable to me, miraculous even. I grew to understand that this was now part of this new identity I had built. I had always been a good listener, but I became a good communicator through consistent attention to this fifth chakra.

I am proof that through courage and dedication—and feeling the fear and doing it anyway—you can make great change and great progress in your ability to convey and receive.

How to Balance your Throat Chakra

To balance the vishuddha chakra, chant mantra, sing in the car, in the shower—wherever you’re inspired. Practice connecting your naval (third chakra) with your throat, and see how the sound of your expression changes as you feel more connected to your own power source.

Another great challenge to give yourself: speak the truth.

Speak the truth, and the truth only, for 10 days, or 2 weeks, and then build it up to a 40 day practice. This is truly life-changing.

Remember that you have a limitless amount of potential to offer the world, and having an open and healed throat chakra is key to stepping into your purpose and offering your insights, beliefs, words, and voice to the people around you, and to the greater universe.

Don’t forget you can also practice along with me on Wanderlust TV, balancing the throat chakra in my vishuddha class, and then follow up your practice with this 10-minute journalling exercise:

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Rachel Dougherty (Sat Siri) is a trailblazing, next generation, Kundalini Yoga teacher and trainer. She travels the world teaching Kundalini Yoga in places like Bali, Maui, Mexico and India. She has been practicing Yoga and Meditation for over twenty years and teaching Kundalini Yoga for fourteen. She practiced Iyengar Yoga, Vipassana Meditation, and many other modalities before finding Kundalini Yoga. A former ballet dancer with the Australian Ballet, Rachel found ballet meditation in motion, a creative expression that renewed her perspective with each step, turn or jump.

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