Who would have thought a utilitarian symbol such as the traffic light could offer us something so meaningful?
We are all aware of the value of the “order” this particular guiding light creates for us on the road: it is instrumental in preventing chaos. Through relating this example to our chakras and their color representations, we can gain a visceral understanding of how the influence of color connects us to a common psychosomatic experience.
Red, in our somatic experience denotes “stop”. In our emotional experience, it denotes anger—also a good time to stop.
In our visceral experience, the first chakra lies at the base of the spine and is associated with grounding and stability. It is the foundational aspect on which all other ascending connections with our outer and inner worlds are built.
In other words, without stopping first and creating a solid base, we have no stability or anchor on which to rely. Without establishing this sense of stability within, we lack trust in ourselves, which is then reflected in our relationships with others as well as the world around us.
Green provides us with a clear somatic sign to move forward. Green light, as it emanates from our fourth chakra denotes our heart center that is always rooted in love.
Though we acknowledge that all other emotions can hold sway on our thinking minds at various times, the green light residing in our heart center is that which most intelligently compels us to move forward.
Our higher chakra centers (fifth, sixth and seventh) are connected with our more highly developed processing centers. This is evidenced by the increased grey matter mass of our human brain tissue. The corresponding expressive, intuitive, and spiritual centers above the heart chakra are arranged so that each is directly influenced by the strategic position held by the heart center beneath them. When the green light indicating readiness to move forward shines upwards from our heart center, we are well on the journey to accessing this higher wisdom.
Finally, we take a look at the amber light that lies most protected in this middle position. The color of this central light is at times perceived as orange, otherwise as yellow.
In the chakra system, orange depicts our second chakra as yellow represents our third.
The orange light depicts our initial impetus to move which comes about through our first awareness of desire—without desire there would be no reason to move. This may be understood by the lethargy associated with depression.
Yellow light depicts our navel center, ruling the digestive fire that is required for physical as well as emotional processing. This inner fire is responsible for determining which of the many elements that we ingest (physically or emotionally) are fortifying versus expendable.
Excessively hanging on to waste particles that are intended to be expendable will, over time, lead to toxicity. This may be understood both physically, i.e. chronic constipation, as well as emotionally, i.e. anxiety and PTSD.
In either instance, the inability to release toxic material will negatively impact the overall system. The common feature essential to both the orange and yellow light is the slowing down of time required for adequate processing in order to reach a state of equilibrium.
This balanced state empowers us with choice by giving us the ability to stop and heed the red signal rather than moving toward peril in haste when carried forth by momentum. The amber light acts as a safety check, providing us with the time and space necessary to re-assess conditions. With this slowing down of our thinking minds, we are best able to gain clarity and access our deeper wisdom. By reaching deep within, we gain access to the guidance we are looking for.
When considering the analogy of this “director of traffic” looming over us to prevent road chaos, we clearly recognize these light signals originate from an external source. Under all but the most exceptional traffic conditions, it is simply not safe for us to over-ride external indicators; it is in our best interest to follow the proscribed “order” as indicated.
In the unpredictability of daily life, however, there are numerous externally proscribed conditions confronting us at any time. Often times we can be assaulted by contradictory conditions.
Contrary to our traffic light analogy, mastery of life requires taking time to turn away from the constant barrage of external stimuli. In our daily lives, we have much to gain by looking inward at our own centers of light, gaining self-awareness from where to better inform our decision-making. Because in life there can be endless doubt of how to proceed moment by moment, the greatest inspiration can most often be found in the middle path.
By choosing life’s middle path as our guiding amber light, we avoid the hazards of the extremes and stay most balanced by remaining closest to the center of our Self and all things. This position assists us with discovering our fourth (heart) chakra that lies centrally between our physically based needs and spiritually connected yearnings.
The middle path always suggests slowing down and taking the time to process where we stand in any given moment. Once this amber light is acknowledged, we find ourselves grounded in the best possible position from which to take the next step forward. The middle path is that place in daily life where we take pause to gaze inward.
May we each bring greater awareness to our unique ability to make a lasting impact on our outer world by reflecting on the intelligence of our inner world.
May we all acknowledge the light that endlessly mirrors between our inner and outer worlds.
We may always seek refuge in this pause, especially when we feel overwhelmed by urgency or inertia.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Assistant Editor: Guenevere Neufeld/Editor: Rachel Nussbaum
Photo: Flickr / grendelkhan