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From Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia
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Muladhara(Sanskrit: मूलाधार, Mūlādhāra) is one of the seven primary chakras according to Hindu tantrism. It may be represented by the color red, although its root square form is usually yellow.


Muladhara is said to be located near the basal end of the spinal column in the vicinity of the coccygeal plexus beneath the sacrumit, while its kshetram, or superficial activation point, is located on the perineum.

It's symbol is a yellow, square lotus, surrounded by eight shining spears on the sides and corners, and with four red petals. The deity of this region is Indra, who is yellow in colour, four-armed, holding a vajra and blue lotus in his hands, and mounted upon the white elephant Airavata, who has seven trunks, denoting the seven elements vital to physical functioning. Occasionally, instead of Indra, the deity is Ganesha, with coral orange skin, wearing a lemon yellow dhoti with a green silk scarf draped around his shoulders. In three hands he respectively holds a laddu, a lotus flower and a hatchet, and the fourth is raised in the mudra of dispelling fear.
Seed mantra


The seed mantra syllable is लं laṃ. Within the bindu, or point that forms a part of the letter, just above it, is Brahma, who is deep red, with four faces and four arms, holding a staff, a sacred vase of nectar, a Jappa Mala, and making the gesture of dispelling fear (alternatively instead of the staff and Jappa mala he is holding a lotus flower and the sacred scriptures). He is seated on a swan. A goddess called Dakini is his shakti. She is beautiful with three eyes and four arms, is shining red or white, holding a trident, a skulled staff, a swan, and a drinking vessel, and is seated on a swan. Instead of a swan and drinking vessel, at times she holds a sword and a shield.

Seat of Kundalini

In the centre of the square, below the seed syllable, is a deep red inverted triangle. The great spiritual potential, the kundalini, shakti sleeps here, waiting to be aroused and brought back up to the source from which it originated, Brahman. She is represented as a snake wrapped three and a half times around a smokey grey lingam.

The four petals are red, with the Sanskrit syllables वं vaṃ, शं śaṃ, षं ṣaṃ and सं saṃ written in gold upon them, representing the four vritties: greatest joy, natural pleasure, delight in controlling passion, and blissfulness in concentration. Alternatively, they may represent dharma (psycho-spiritual longing), artha (psychic longing), kama (physical longing) and moksha (longing for spiritual liberation).



Muladhara is the base from which the three main psychic channels or nadis emerge: the Ida, Pingala and Sushumna. It is also believed that Muladhara is a subtle abode of the Hindu God, Ganapati. And in the highest revered prayer for Ganapati, the Ganapati Atharvashirsha, it is mentioned that 'one who worships Lord Ganapati would easily grasp the concept and realize Brahman'.


The transcendental basis of physical nature, and is considered the "root" or "foundation" chakra, is known as Muladhara. Kundalini awakening begins here. It is also known as the seat of the "red bindu" or subtle drop, which rises up to the "white bindu" in the head to unite the female and masculine energies or shakti and shiva .

It is associated with the element of earth, and the sense of smell]], and the action of excretion.

"By meditating thus on Her who shines within the Muladhara Chakra, with the luster of ten million Suns, a man becomes Lord of speech and King among men, and an Adept in all kinds of learning. He becomes ever free from all diseases, and his inmost Spirit becomes full of great gladness. Pure of disposition by his deep and musical words, he serves the foremost of the Devas."


Association with the body

Muladhara is located at the base of the spine, and is related to the perineum, near the anus. Being associated with the sense of smell, it is associated with the nose, and being associated with excretion, it is associated with the anus.

In kundalini yoga, there are various yogic practices held to incite the energy in Muladhara including: asanas (such as Garudasana, Shashankasana and Siddhasana); nosetip gazing, or Nasikagra Drishti; specific pranayamas; and most importantly the practice of mula bandha the contraction of the perineum, which awakens kundalini, and is also important for the retention of semen.
Comparisons with other systems

When compared to the other important Tantric system of Vajrayana in Tibet, the Muladhara chakra finds no parallel in the same place, unlike the other six chakras. Instead, the Tibetan system positions two chakras on the sexual organ, the [[jewel [wheel]] in the middle, near the tip, and the tip of the sexual organ itself. These chakras are extremely important for the generation of great bliss, and play an important role in Highest tantra sexual practices. A unique feature, the red drop, called the red bodhicitta, is not located here, but instead at the navel wheel.

In the Sufi system of Lataif, there are two 'lower' Lataif. One is the nafs, which is just below the navel. The nafs incorporates all the elements of man's 'lower self'. The other similar lataif is called the qalab, or mould, which appears in seven lataif systems, and corresponds to the physical body, but this is sometimes located at the top of the head. [7] Qalab is usually further divided into the four elements.

In the Kabbalah, the lowest Sephiroth is known as Malkuth, and performs the same transcendental role as the basis of physical nature. It is associated with the sexual organ, in close contact with Yesod.
Alternative names

    Tantra: Adhara, Brahma Padma, Bhumi Chakra, Chaturdala, Chatuhpatra, Muladhara, Mooladhara, Mula Chakra, Mula Padma
    Vedas (late Upanishads): Adhara, Brahma, Muladhara, Mulakanda
    Puranic: Adhara, Muladhara