The root chakra is our base chakra and correlates with our base needs for nurturance and security. Our flight or flight responses are often activated by root chakra fears about home, money and safety.
When I sat down to create a collage piece to express my root chakra, I expected to be confronted with my conflicted feelings around money and stability. Instead the well-known theme — to me that is — of knowing my place in the world took form on the page.
The map in the background is of Cape Town, South Africa, my birth place and where I was living before relocating to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1997. The tortoise screamed at me to be part of this collage – making the message of taking home with you wherever you go obvious to my conscious mind.
I have been pondering my place in the world and what home means for years. When I first came to the U.S., I did not expect to stay here for very long. I was following a boy I was smitten with and had no guarantee that relationship would pan out. So I packed up my flat in Cape Town and put my belongings in storage with the intention of returning permanently within two years.
The relationship did not turn out so well and my life in the Bay Area took many turns.
Two years turned into five, and then seven.
On one of my annual trips back to South Africa, I finally sold off what was left in my storage unit. It was time to come to terms with the reality that I had emigrated and that the Bay Area was my home as well.
Since that realization I have felt more at ease with living here.
A few months ago I had a very vivid dream of an encounter with a tortoise that culminated in it grabbing onto my right arm and biting me. I know enough about shamanism and power animals to know that when an animal bites you in a dream you better pay attention!
I turned to my dreamworker friend, Katrina, to understand what medicine this tortoise had to teach me. Beyond the obvious messages of slowing my pace and finding my home within, we hit on a gem.
Tortoises are indigenous to my homeland and were common visitors in the garden of my childhood. Katrina felt that this tortoise may be an ancestral messenger and ally.
When she said that, I got goosebumps all over so I know she was onto something deep.
I’m not sure what my ancestors of blood or land have to tell me with that dream and now this collage, but I take comfort in them being present in my root chakra work.
As Azi and I ready ourselves for children, finding home within myself has been a poignant theme. While my children will be American, I will always have a dual experience of home in my heart. I always want to root myself and my family in this awareness of ancestral wisdom, place and belonging.
If you wish to balance and replenish your chakras, please have a look at my Pocketful of Chakra Blessings ebook. This 9-page ebook contains a special blessing and affirmation for each of your chakras to bring you back into balance.