The solar plexus chakra is also known as Manipura. It’s the seat of the will, confidence, vitality, and personal power. It’s called the solar plexus chakra because it’s located above the navel, at the solar plexus. Its color is yellow, and it’s symbolized by a ten-petaled lotus.
Manipura means “bright gem,” and, when it’s clear and balanced, we can sparkle like gems. We are confident and strong, without being pushy or overbearing. We’re secure in ourselves and our own charisma.
When it becomes blocked, we might experience problems with the abdominal organs, like gas and nausea, as well as a lack of self-confidence or weak will. An imbalance might make us feel angry, judgmental, and defensive.
There are multiple herbs and oils whose energy is aligned with this chakra, and can be used to help open it and bring it back into balance.
Here are some of the best herbs and essential oils for healing, balancing, and opening the solar plexus chakra:
The fruit of Citrus bergamia is known as the bergamot orange. When ripe, it’s bright yellow and somewhat less sour than lemon, with a bitterness akin to grapefruit. The essential oil is used in perfumes, aromatherapy, and to flavor beverages.
Earl Grey tea is made of black tea flavored with bergamot oil. Energetically, this oil helps with the healthy release of trapped emotions and stagnant energy.
Drink Earl Grey tea, consume bergamot marmalade, dilute a few drops of the essential oil in a neutral carrier and use it to anoint the abdominal area, or wear a drop or two in aromatherapy jewelry.
Avoid using bergamot oil on the skin before sun exposure. It contains a compound called bergapten which may cause phototoxic reactions.
Chamomile flowers (Anthemis nobilis or Matricaria recutita) are small, bright, daisy-like blooms with bright yellow centers. Their yellow color aligns them with the solar plexus chakra, as does their beneficial impact on the digestive system.
Chamomile acts as a gentle relaxant, which can help soothe unpleasant emotions arising from a blocked Manipura chakra. This plant also helps calm upset stomachs and encourage the flow of bile, which can ease the physical symptoms of a chakra blockage.
Use the dried flowers in tea, or take them in tincture form. You can also use chamomile essential oil to anoint the solar plexus area.
See article: Chamomile: Magical Properties, Benefits & Uses.
Cinnamomum species are easily recognizable as the warm, spicy cinnamon sticks sold at most grocery stores and spice markets. They’re associated with the element of Fire, which is the element that governs the solar plexus chakra. That means that this spice and its essential oil can be used to help invigorate a weakened or blocked chakra.
Consume cinnamon in sweet or savory foods and beverages, or make an oil blend containing a very small amount of cinnamon oil and place it in aromatherapy jewelry. Never take any essential oil internally, except for under the guidance of a physician.
See article: Cinnamon: Magical Properties, Benefits & Uses.
The sunny yellow flowers of Taraxacum officinale are associated with the solar plexus chakra by their color, but the whole plant also contains beneficial fiber, vitamins, minerals, and bitter compounds. The roots are said to benefit the liver, in particular.
The leaves act as a mild diuretic, encouraging the production of urine and the release of the toxic waste that the body dumps into the bladder. This means that dandelions help clear and balance the solar plexus chakra on an energetic level, while providing support for healthy digestion.
Use the dried leaves in tea, consume young leaves and flowers in salads, or use the whole plant in supplement or tincture form.
Zingiber officinals is easily recognized as the knobby beige roots sold in grocery store produce sections. It has a characteristically warm, spicy flavor, and is known as a helpful remedy for nausea. That means that it can help you deal with the side-effects of a blocked chakra, even as it helps clear it.
You can use this herb in a variety of ways, from eating candied ginger or other ginger-containing foods, to using pieces of fresh ginger to make tea. You can also use a prepared tea made of dried ginger, but, from an energetic standpoint, fresh ginger is more potent.
See article: Ginger: Magical Properties, Benefits & Uses.
The fruit of Citrus paradisi is known for its bittersweet flavor. The acid content of the fruit can help relieve some digestive issues stemming from low stomach acid, and the essential oil is purported to help move stagnant energy, alleviate stress, and calm irritability.
Consume the flesh or juice of the fruit, or use the bright, fruity essential oil to make an anointing blend for the solar plexus chakra. Avoid using it topically before sun exposure.
7. Milk thistle
Silybum marianum is a perennial herb that contains silymarin, a substance that can have a beneficial effect on the liver and gallbladder. This means that, in addition to helping the solar plexus chakra energetically, it may be able to help the physical problems associated with a chakra blockage.
You can eat the stem and leaves in salads, or take an extract in supplement form. If you choose to use a supplement, talk to your doctor before beginning.
Mentha x piperita is an extremely well-known digestive herb. It’s said to help calm nausea, stimulate bile production, and (when used in enteric-coated capsules) even calm the muscle spasms associated with irritable bowel syndrome.
It also has a very invigorating, head-clearing aroma. This allows it to help the physical symptoms of a blocked or unbalanced chakra, while it clears the mind.
Consume peppermint in sweet or savory dishes, use the dried leaves in tea, add a drop of the oil to aromatherapy jewelry, or dilute it for use as an anointing blend.
The oil of Nardostachys jatamansi, called spikenard, is used physically for digestive troubles, and emotionally to help release a compulsion to control. This means that it can be helpful for those whose solar plexus chakras are overstimulated, leading them to try to exert their will, control, and dominate.
Dilute a few drops of the essential oil into a neutral carrier and use it to anoint the solar plexus area, or wear it in aromatherapy jewelry. If you use a room diffuser, be cautious around pets or small children — many essential oils are toxic to them.
The roots of Curcuma longa are best known in the west as the ingredient that makes mustard yellow, but this spicy, earthy herb is delightful in a variety of foods and beverages.
Its yellow color ties it to the solar plexus chakra, and its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory content and bitter flavor are helpful for the digestive system.
Add turmeric to smoothies or any foods that would benefit from its subtle spice, or use it in supplement form. Turmeric is said to work best when combined with black pepper, since pepper helps aid the absorption of turmeric’s beneficial compounds.
11. Honorable Mention: Bitters
Bitters are combinations of herbs that stimulate the secretion of digestive juices. Some say that they can help heal the liver by increasing the production of bile, which helps keeps ducts flushed out and working properly.
While not all bitters are exactly attuned to the solar plexus chakra, they all help the digestive organs. This can help the physical symptoms of a chakra blockage.
The solar plexus chakra, Manipura, is the energy center that controls how we feel about ourselves, and the image we try to project on the world. When it’s in balance, we’re in control, calm, confident, and happy.
When it isn’t, we can range from being meek and weak-willed, to overbearing and oppressive.
Bringing this chakra into balance doesn’t just help us, it helps everyone with which we interact.