The Vampire Codex:

XVI. Geography of the Energy Body

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by Michelle Belanger

On the body, there are certain centers where energy is concentrated. These have come to be known generally as chakras. We can easily make a connection to a person at any of these centers, bridging the gap between body and energy-body, physical and spiritual. Indeed, these centers are like junctions between the two bodies and one can affect the body on either or both levels simultaneously through the skilled manipulation of these centers.

The function of the chakras are like subtle body organs. Each has a different purpose and affect on the subtle and physical form, but for the most part, they all gather, process, and circulate energy. They have been described as "wheels of light", which is indeed the literal translation of the word chakra, and each one has a distinct frequency at which it resonates energy, keeping it constantly spinning, pulsing, and in motion.

These centers and their usage has been known to cultures from ancient Egypt and before. The energy flowing through these centers is known as prana in Sanskrit. It is chi to the Chinese, ki to the Japanese, the ba or "breath of life" to the Egyptians. The energy has been described as a fluid and has been equated with breath, blood and life by varying cultures. It is the essential stuff of life and it is etheric yet fluid, mutable, and in a constant state of motion. It is the spiritual mercury of the ancient alchemists, the element most crucial to transformation and the creation of the Philosopher's Stone.

Different systems depict these centers at varying points in the body. The Hindu system of Chakras has been most widely accepted by the West, and it depicts a set of seven "wheels of light" which occur in a centralized line throughout the body. The Tibetan system, which may have more purely inherited the ancient wisdom that went before, recognizes only five. These five correspond to five aspects the Egyptians attributed to the human soul. As our heritage is Egyptian and pre-Egyptian, we have chosen their words to describe these centers.

Different systems depict these centers at varying points in the body. The Hindu system of chakras has been most widely accepted by the West, and it depicts a set of seven "wheels of light" which occur in a centralized line throughout the body. The Tibetan system recognizes only five, so it is important to be aware that not all systems agree. We recognize major six centers within the body, and their location and characteristics are as follows:

The first energy center is located at the crown of the head, and is accessible from either crown or forehead. This is often depicted as two different centers, but due to their proximity, these are affected as one. To the Egyptians and those that preceded them, this center was known as the Akh. The Akh is the immortal body, that which contains our undying, Essential Selves. This energy center is the point at which the immortal body crosses over with the physical form.

The next center is located at the throat, and is accessible from the mouth or the sides of the throat over the veins. This is known as the Khu. The Khu is the voice and will of an individual. It is the seat of individual determination and magickal power for it is through the word that our Wills are enacted.

The next center is located above the heart. This is the Ab. It is accessible directly above the heart, between the breasts. The Ab is the center of the physical being, where the physical stuff of life is circulated throughout the organism. It is a very powerful center of raw life energy. The Ab is the dynamic opposite of the Ba. Where the Ab is the center of the physical life-force, with the heart and all its pumping blood, the Ba is the center of the spiritual life-force and serves much the same function as the heart with circulating and directing the subtle life energies.

When doing energy work or doing visualizations, it will seem that the center of power is located in the chest, just beneath the very base of the sternum. This is the Ka. It is the dynamic opposite of the Akh, so that where the Akh is the immortal, higher soul, the Ka is the body-soul, tied to the needs and hungers of the physical form. It is here that a strong sensation can be felt during feeding. The Ka is interlinked with the very capacity to feed. It is the seat of the spiritual hunger, as well as the bridge between the subtle energy and the point in the body where this is drawn in and made useful.

The Ba is located in the belly, just beneath the navel. The Ba is the center of the spiritual life force. By its action, it sustains the life of the subtle body and connects the subtle body to the physical, transitory form. It is further the tie which connects us to the wheel of death and rebirth. Altering or severing this center completely will affect the way in which the soul travels through the wheel. Most other energy traditions such as Yoga describe this center as the seat of the subtle power. It is this area just beneath the navel that a Yogi is trained to focus on when gathering power. For us, this center is significantly altered. Many of us are disconnected from it partially or entirely. Our center, as a result, is higher, and lies in the Ka.

Finally, there is a center at the root. This is the Min, the sexual force. This center is most completely tied to the body and is the dynamic opposite of the Khu. Where the Khu is the word and will, this is the instinct, that which has the power to rob us of our wills and transform us into beasts. This center is accessible through the genitals or just inside the joint of the thigh.

Minor centers exist at the wrists, the insides of the elbows and the backs of the knees. The palms of the hands and the soles of the feet also contain minor chakras. Any of these can be used to create a connection, although we are hardly bound to reach out to another's energy body through these sites. Any physical contact will do, and as mentioned before, even physical contact is not necessary to feed.

Next: XVII. More on Feeding

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