Ajna Chakra

The header image for this article is a photograph taken by Johannes Plenio as found on Pexels.

Related to this post please see – https://tracelesstrails.com/2019/10/28/chakra-files-ajna-meditation/


Brow chakra

The purpose of this piece on the ajna chakra is simply to clarify, for my own reference, the notes that I have taken over the years from two primary sources, the books Kundalini Tantra and Kundalini Yoga for the West. There are slight differences in their interpretations of various aspects of the chakras, in these notes both interpretations are listed, more often than not.

These notes below are taken from the book Kundalini Tantra by Swami Satyananda Saraswati

The ajna chakra is known as the divya chakshu, eye of knowledge, the channel through which the spiritual aspirant receives revelation and insight into the underlying nature of existence. It is also known as the Eye of Shiva, with Shiva the epitome of meditation, the Third Eye, the “command”, the “monitoring centre”, the bridge which links the guru and the disciples, it is here that the directions of the inner guru are heard in the deepest state of meditation.

Its location is in the brain, directly behind the eye brow centre. Its physical concomitant is the pineal gland whilst for the Sahasrara it is the pituitary gland.

Its representation is a two petalled lotus, pale in colour, as if intangible. On the left petal is the letter ham, on the right petal is the letter kshan, they are inscribed in silver white colour and they are the beeja (seed) mantras for Shiva and Shakti. One is the moon, the ida nadi, the other is the sun, the pingala nadi. Below ajna the three nadis merge –

Left – ida – Centre – sushumna – Right – pingala

Within the lotus is a perfect circle representing shoonya, the void, within this circle is an inverted triangle representing shakti as creativity, manifestation. Above the inverted triangle is a black shivalingam as symbol of the astral body.

When in muladhara, the foundation chakra, the shivalingam is smoky, ill defined and it is known as the dhumra lingam and it is compared to a state of consciousness in which we live an instinctive life with no real concept of ourselves. In ajna the shivalingam has a consolidated outline, is black and it is called the itarakhya lingam with the awareness of “what I am” more defined. By the time it reaches sahasrara, the crown chakra, consciousness is illuminated, the lingam is luminous and it is called the jyotir lingam.

Over the shivalingam is an Om symbol with a crescent moon and bindu above it.

Om is the beeja (seed)mantra and symbol of the ajna chakra. Above its form can be seen the raif, the trace sound of consciousness.

The presiding deity of the ajna chakra is Paramshiva, who shines like a chain of lightning flashes. The goddess of the ajna chakra is Hakini who has six faces.

Tanmatra – the sense of modality of ajna is the mind.

Jnanendriya – the organ of sense of ajna is the mind.

Karmendriya – the organ of action of ajna is the mind.

So, in ajna the tanmatra, jnanendriya and karmendriya are all considered to be the mind, where mind is able to gain knowledge by subtle means rather than by the input of the sense organs. Mind perceives knowledge directly via a 6th or intuitive sense which comes into operation as ajna awakens, also the faculty of astral projection manifests with the awakening of ajna.

The plane is the tapa loka, where imperfections are purified and karmas burned away. Along with the vishuddhi chakra, the throat chakra, ajna forms the basis for the vijnanamaya kosha which initiates psychic development.


Depiction of the Ajna Chakra.

Note: For a fully detailed depiction of  Ajna please refer to one of the books listed as sources for these notes.

These notes below are taken from the book Kundalini Yoga for the West by Swami Sivananda Radha

Ajna is the sixth chakra.

64 Rays in relation to the mind, ether (akasha). Six senses including the mind are now like rays penetrating four corner of the world.

Dhyana / Meditation, expressed in the ajna chakra.

Two petals of the ajna chakra symbolic of the  functioning of the mind (manas) in two worlds of reality – manifest and unmanifest, also symbolic for the pineal and pituitary, the ida and pingala nadis which unite at this point.

The circle represents perfection at the highest level. Within the circle is a golden triangle and within the triangle is the shivalingam, called Itara, with streaks of lightning representing power, energy. Triangle symbolic of workings of the energy in its pure, unmanifested state for which sex is the expression most commonly known to humans. Reproduction at this point however is no longer of a child but of the cosmic nature.

The quarter moon above the om symbol is a vortex of energy, consciousness manifested most subtly.

The beeja (seed) mantra is om (pranava), the seed sound, the mahanada, the supreme sound.

Bindu above the crescent moon is a golden dot and symbolizes complete detachment from the body, a precondition to be able to use the mind in other than habitual or known ways.

The presiding deity of ajna is Paramsiva (Sambhu), Siva in his highest aspect.

The goddess is Sakti Hakini – the union of manifest and unmanifest energy.

Intelligence at this level is symbolized in unity. Six faces and six arms. The six faces indicate mind has increased in lower and subtlety, the six arms indicate high efficiency. The practitioner who has reached this level has become a siddha, one who has acquired the power which goes with these experiences.

The hands of the six arms hold the following –

Vidya / Book which is symbolic for knowledge retained.

Hand gestures – Varada is one of granting boons and Abhayamudra is one of dispelling fears.

More spiritual gifts, intuitive insights, perceptions by the various senses are available. Fears are dispelled through increased knowledge from personal experience. The control of the imagination allows the discovery that all experiences are the creation of the mind.

Damaru / Drum – Indicates the ongoing beat, rhythm of life and that the siddha must remain long enough on earth to the show path to others.

Khatvanga / Staff with Skull on top – Skull previously symbolic of the empty mind now stands for attainment of a mind with awesome powers. If intuitive perception is retained these powers will be used for the benefit and well being of others.

Mala / Rosary – Mantra becoming a self-generating power, sound brought to highest expression as in pranava om.


Depiction of the Ajna Chakra.

Note: For a fully detailed depiction of Ajna please refer to one of the books listed as sources for these notes.

These notes below are taken from the book Kundalini Tantra by Swami Satyananda Saraswati –

One who meditates on awakened ajna sees a flaming lamp shining as the morning sun and dwells within the regions of the fire, sun and moon.

Ajna is essentially the chakra of the mind. When one has awareness during the course of one’s actions this is the faculty of ajna operating, when developed you can have knowledge without the aid of the senses as the smaller part of the brain, where ajna is located – the medulla oblongata at the top of the spinal cord – has the capacity to acquire knowledge directly.

In awakened ajna there is purified buddhi (subtle intelligence / higher perception), the dropping away of attachment and sankalpa (willpower, intention) and shakti becomes very strong. Ajna is the witnessing centre where one becomes the detached observer of all events, awareness is developed so that one sees the hidden essence beyond visible appearances.

Ajna resembles a knot at the top of the spinal cord called rudra granthi, the knot of Shiva, symbolic of attachment to newly acquired skills which comes with the awakening of this chakra. Awakening of ajna allows one to understand the relationship between cause and effect, then the whole philosophical approach and attitude to life changes, one becomes the detached witness.

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