History of the Chakra Systems

Origin of Chakra System in the Ancient Texts

The Sanskrit word, “chakra” was used in the oldest text called the Vedas around 1500 and 500 BC, originated in India. However, the chakras as psychic centers of consciousness are first mentioned in the Yoga Upanishads (600 B.C.) and later in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali (200 B.C.). The Yoga Upanishads are the collections of minor Upanishads. It includes Shandilya Upanishad, Teja Bindu Upanishad, Jabala Upanishad, Cudamoni Upanishad, and the Yoga-Shikka Upanishad.

Origin of Seven Chakra System in the Western World

The main text about chakras that have come to the West is a translation by the Englishman, Arthur Avalon ((Sir John George Woodroffe), in his book, “The Serpent Power” published in 1919 [1]. These texts: the Sat-Cakra-Nirupana, written by Swami Purnananda in 1577, and the Padaka-Pancaka, written in the 10th century, contain descriptions of the centers and related practices. There is also another 10th-century text, called the Gorakshashatakam, which gives instructions for meditating on the chakras. These texts form the basis of our understanding of chakra theory and Kundalini yoga today. These texts have been the primary source of information on the chakras for most western students of the seven central chakra system.

Origin of 114 Chakra System

There are seven main chakras along the spine. However, according to Sri Amit Ray, there are as many as 114 all over the body. In 2005, Sri Amit Ray rediscovered the 114 chakras in the human body based on his profound meditation experiences and the oral tradition [19, 20, 21]. He identified the names, locations and functions of all the 114 chakras for the first time [21]. Ray classified the 114 chakras both structurally and functionally. Scientifically, Ray linked the 114 chakras with the glands, hormones, brain areas and neurons, neurotransmitters, brain-gut axis and the HPA axis. Ray designed 21 chakra pathways for deep meditation [21]. They are designed to aid accuracy in meditation and the transmission of the healing energy and for the transformation of the soul.

Source: A Brief History of the Chakras in Human Body