Solar plexus chakra & ego

Stian Gudmundsen Høiland, modified 10 Years ago at 8/13/11 7:12 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 8/13/11 7:12 PM

Solar plexus chakra & ego

Posts: 296 Join Date: 9/5/10 Recent Posts
Earlier today I saw some videos of Ayya Khema and she expressed very clearly that when one gets the urge to take a deep breath after the breath turns very fine in meditation, one should absolutely not take that deep breath. I speculated that this urge is a pure manifestation of the ego; the ego is loosing control, and is trying to regain it by taking that deep breath.

I did some sitting. From a certain moment in the sitting I had a very solid urge to take a deep breath located exactly at my solar plexus and this lasted throughout the sitting with some residual solidity still there as I write this. Without having given any serious thought to my earlier speculation about this urge being the ego, I checked online to see if the solar plexus chakra is related to the ego (I never remember all that stuff), and lo' and behold: it's the ego center.

I don't know what exactly to do with this information. Subduing the ego by continuing very fine breathing leads to a distraction at the solar plexus. Doing something right leads to something wrong - it seems contradictory, so I might be doing something wrong. Any thoughts about this?
This Good Self, modified 10 Years ago at 8/13/11 11:48 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 8/13/11 11:12 PM

RE: Solar plexus chakra & ego

Posts: 946 Join Date: 3/9/10 Recent Posts
Whenever I do samatha meditation, without fail I get massive involuntary jolts of my abdominal muscles which sort of bends me in half if I'm sitting. Sometimes my head flies backwards simultaneously.

I'd probably agree that ego has a bodily location in the belly, even though its mind-created. Here's a few cultural references I've noticed:

- wealthy power broker types are known as 'fat cats' because they often have large distended abdomens, indicating excessive ego identification (ie.overstimulated 3rd chakra). This is accompanied by controlling, threatening behaviour, anger, rage, etc. 'He has a lot of gall'. 'He has a bilious personality'.*

- A 'yellow belly' is someone who is timid. 'Gutless' is another similar reference to a person with a fear-based identity, ie. inadequate self-respect, or underactive 3rd chakra. Sometimes a very weakly activated 3rd chakra can be compensated by adopting the fat cat behaviours, ie. outwardly aggressive, inwardly frightened. 'He is lilly livered'. *The liver of course is the largest abdominal organ.

My personal view is that the 3rd chakra must be properly balanced in order to understand love (4th chakra) then creativity and higher states of awareness (6th 7th). That's not to say that you can't skip ahead to 6th/7th type of work, but you run a risk of becoming very top-heavy. A top-heavy person has a strong intellect and ability to access advanced meditative states, but poor body awareness, is ungrounded, will have difficulty with socializing, have few friends, and will display the typical behaviours of over/underactivity in the 3rd chakra.
Bruno Loff, modified 10 Years ago at 8/14/11 5:25 AM
Created 10 Years ago at 8/14/11 5:25 AM

RE: Solar plexus chakra & ego

Posts: 1094 Join Date: 8/30/09 Recent Posts
I don't know about the "ego," but I do know that the sensations in the solar plexus will sometimes develop into a feeling of lack of breath. Like I am not taking in enough air, and absolutely must breathe. However, at the same time, it seems as if this urge to breathe is just a blockage in the area, as I am breathing just fine in normal amounts, and I'm not blacking out or show any other signs of lack of oxygen intake.

This has led me, in various periods in my practice (for a few hours in my first retreat, a few weeks in early 2010, a few weeks in late 2010, and now occasionally and seemingly at random), to try to relax this feeling of suffocation, to handle it like I would any other blockage.

What happens then is that the tension becomes stronger, and then stronger still, and then eventually (and not always, only after several sessions of doing this, and sometimes not then), there is some dissolution of some kind, and the way I breathe changes. I mean it changes from that moment onwards. I breathe more easily, more slowly, and use the belly more. I used to be a chest-breather, and now I am definitely a belly breather.

It always amazes me how this process is so obviously physiological (rather than just psychological). This is just one among several changes in bodily function.