Ajna is the energy center known as the Third Eye. It is located between the eyebrows and about a half inch above them. The back of this chakra is located just beneath the bony protrusion of the occipital bone in the back of the skull. In the middle of the Ajna center is the Pituitary Gland, known as the master gland of the endocrine system, as it secretes hormones that stimulate the functions of all the other endocrine glands in the body.
Ajna is known as the Third Eye because of its connection to the human talent of intuition. Our intuition is another way of seeing and knowing without invoking our traditional senses. In fact, I think of intuition as our sixth sense. All of us have intuition, but it’s stronger in some people than others, just as some of us have a more sensitive sense of smell or see better than others. With our intuition we sense the electromagnetic energy that is emitted by all matter. At our base molecular structure, we are made up of atoms and molecules that emit electromagnetic energy. The electromagnetic energy of all living things together creates an energy pulsation that we can feel, albeit sometimes at a very subconscious level. When we are in tune to the pulsation and changes in it, I like to say that we are able to “read the field.” The subtle changes in energy flows conveys information to us that seems to come from nowhere.
In our society that focuses so heavily on rational knowledge, intuition has been poo pooed to a great extent. We’ve been taught not to trust information that we can’t trace back to tangible evidence and documentable observation, the scientific method. But the fact is that even though we can’t see the energy that makes up the universe, we can feel it. It speaks to us. It tells us what we can’t yet see, hear, smell, touch, or taste. We are a part of the energy of life and as such we’re on the same frequency.
Intuition isn’t a loud voice; it’s soft, subtle, and gentle. It won’t force itself on you. To “tune in,” you have to get quiet in your brain. You have to feel more than think. It’s an inner movement not an outer sensation. Every person has the ability to strengthen their intuitive voice. It takes some work, like training a muscle. Stimulating the Ajna center is a great way to do this.
The Ajna chakra is part of the upper triangle of the chakra system, comprising the 5th, 6th and 7th, chakras. As the chakras get closer to the top of the head, we enter the realm of the spiritual, our connection to infinity. The upper chakras have no associated earth elements as a result. Work on the upper chakras is largely done through, breathwork (pranayama), meditation, chanting (mantra) and energetic seals (mudra). Although, you can stimulate all of the chakras physically by touching, or bringing pressure to its physical location on the body.
One of the easiest ways to stimulate the Ajna chakra is to take your eye gaze up and in, to the third eye point. You will often see Hindu and Buddhist images of people in meditation with this gaze. Sometimes they are even depicted as having one eye in the middle of the forehead. When the gaze is fixed on the Ajna chakra, it stimulates the pituitary gland and recharges the entire endocrine system. Many people experience a feeling of calmness and peace just by tuning their gaze to the Third Eye. If you close your eyes as you do this, you may begin to see colors that eventually settle into an indigo, the color associated with the Ajna Chakra. Another method that you will often see depicted is a hand position where the palms are pressed together in front of the forehead with the thumbs resting between the eyebrows.
When I was a child, I grew up in a family that has many secrets. There were many things told to me that as I grew older, didn’t quite make sense based on what I actually observed. My parents were trying to shelter and protect me, but instead, it confused me and taught me to question my own interpretation of the world. My journey through yoga for the last twenty years has been one of learning to trust myself again. To trust my gut when something doesn’t feel quite right as well as when I feel strongly pulled in a particular direction. Recently, my mentor told me, “Angela, you should trust your intuition. It’s usually right.”
Meditation is a critical practice in learning to listen to your intuition. When we become calm and silent in the mind, we are able to hear the small voice inside. Our inner perceptions rise to the surface. While I think it is great that meditation apps like Calm and Headspace are becoming popular ways to begin a meditation practice, I would challenge you to go deeper. These apps focus almost exclusively on guided meditations, where you focus on a voice that guides your thoughts. A deeper form of meditation is where there are no words, no thoughts; just silence and your experience. It’s in this space where Ajna energy grows. It’s time for you to see the field.
“There’s only one shot that’s in perfect harmony with the field. One shot that’s his authentic shot. And that shot is going to choose him. There’s a perfect shot out there trying to find each and every one of us; all we got to do it get ourselves out of its way. Let it choose us. Hmm…look at him. He in the field.”
–The Legend of Bagger Vance
Click here to watch a clip on YouTube: Seeing The Field