In ayurveda (India’s system of traditional medicine), Sarva-Rogini, one of the Sanskrit names for cannabis, means “curer of all diseases,” explains Dr. Seeta Narsai, a Los Angeles-based Ayurvedic doctor. “With a name like that, you get an idea of how this plant was revered in ancient India.” She adds, “there’s a long history of using cannabis for spiritual evolution in India by certain sects of Shiva devotees.” Because cannabis is closely associated with the Hindu deity Shiva, devotees use the herb as a sacrament to aid in prayer and meditation. Bhang, an Indian drink made from cannabis, is used in parts of India to treat fever, digestive issues, sunstroke and dysentery, as well as to increase libido. Ayurvedic practitioners can use cannabis to treat high blood pressure and glaucoma, as well as to treat infections and pain, increase appetite and digestion, and stimulate the nervous system.
While many yogis today refrain from using mind-altering substances in order to attain the ideal state of harmony, otherwise known as sattva, others find that conscious cannabis consumption, along with practices like yoga and meditation, can aid in the sincere intention to heal and balance the body.
Here’s a guide to the seven chakras with specific practices and cannabis recommendations to pair with each of them.
Root Chakra (Muladhara)
The root chakra is described as ruby red in color and governs the most basic of human needs, such as for water, food, shelter, and safety from harm. When your root chakra is balanced, you feel safe in the world and present in your body. An imbalanced root chakra can lead to feelings of instability or anxiety. You may suffer from nightmares and persistent fears, or experience physical issues with the digestive organs, lower back, legs or feet. Malasana, a deep squat, helps ground and stabilize the physical body. If you’re struggling with anxiety and fear, heavier indica strains like Midnight and Grand Daddy Purple can help. Because muladhara is also associated with the sense of smell, an indica strain with the aromatic terpene linalool, the same compound that gives lavender its fragrance, can help you access that mellow first-chakra vibe.
Sacral Chakra (Svadhisthana)
Located between the navel and the pubic bone, the second, or sacral chakra is associated with emotion, sexuality and creativity. It governs the reproductive organs, as well as your ability to feel fully alive. Its color is vibrant orange. When the sacral chakra is out of balance, you may feel depressed or emotionally stuck, suffer from addictions, or experience sexual dysfunction. Play and creative exploration in areas like visual arts, music, gardening and cooking nourish the sacral chakra, as does recognizing and accepting your feelings—even the difficult ones. The yoga postures Baddha Konasana (Bound Angle) and Bhujangasana (Cobra) can help bring energy to this area. A relaxing indica strain that also promotes creativity, such as Berry White, could be a good entryway to the second chakra’s flow.