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Reality TV: The Root Chakra Darling

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Who will survive the crocodile pit to win the $10,000 and a trip to Disney? Will Dave ditch Anya in order to find out if Greg is really a virgin? Stay tuned, as we decide tonight, right here and now, who deserves to realize the dream of a lifetime, and who goes back home to sell car insurance...

It's definitely slim pickings if you are looking for higher awareness entertainment on television these days. What? Did I just suggest that television, the raging noise box that brought the hips of rock-n-roll into the homes of innocent Americans, ever had the potential of providing material capable of creating higher consciousness? Why, yes, I believe I did. And I have a couple more questions for you: When you watch these "survival of the fittest" shows, do you feel like the mighty warrior triumphing over the elements? Or do you feel like the last kid picked to play kickball?

Reality TV shows are designed to appeal to our lower instincts. They anger us. They call out our strongest desires to win, achieve and stomp into the ground anyone who stands between us and The Prize just as easily as they call out our weaknesses and contempt for having felt weak. Reality TV brings out the most basic feelings in people, what energy workers refer to as "root chakra" stuff. The root chakra, known in Sanskrit as the Muladhara, is the first energy bridge into the etheric body, or the energy field that connects our life force to our form. It is the first of seven or more major chakras, depending on which system you follow, roughly visualized along the spine. Each chakra has its own identifying characteristics and connection to the Divine. Together they make up the Chakra System, part of the etheric body, the subtle extension of the life force into transpersonal space. The root chakra is located in the area of the perineum, between the genitals and anus. Because of its location low in the spine, it acts as the "root," grounding the meridian lines of the Universe into the body, grounding us into the meridians of the Earth realm, itself.

On that spinal "Living Cross," the root chakra is the first level of mastery in the physically formed realm. This first chakra is most often observed as red in color, and relates to our ability to find our way through the most survivalistic aspects of life, both mundane and spiritual. We begin developing the major traits of this chakra before birth, with some children fully mastering its skills in their first year of life. Those aspects include learning to relate to our surroundings, such as learning the rules within the family unit and community, how to sustain ourselves in our basic needs -- clothing, eating, hygiene, sexual identity, etc. In short, the root chakra supplies us with the energetic ability to take care of ourselves and master the elements, both tactile and metaphoric. It is the point at which we make the biggest strides in defining who we are with regard to the manifest world.

What's wrong with Reality TV stimulating the first chakra? Nothing. People who truly manifest a healthy root chakra are those who get along well with their surroundings and with themselves, and they have a healthy alliance with adversity. Such people grow from healthy competition and typically see themselves as moving with the elements, not against them. People who don't have a well-developed root chakra constantly compete in every area of life, have little respect for their environment or the people in it and don't feel particularly functional in themselves or as part of All That Is.

Sound familiar? It should. We are being spoonfed root chakra dis-ease on prime time television -- on every major and minor network -- every night of the week as entertainment. It would be fine if Reality TV inspired people to examine the motives behind their tendencies to compete to the detriment, or to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses in being the sole caretaker of themselves or their household. But it doesn't. Reality TV has spawned an "All in the Family" backlash, in which people model their behaviors to compete more by fostering an "every man for himself" mentality, either literally in their lives or by proxy, betting on which Reality contestant will outlast the others, or who can consume the most of which vile substance. And for what? Money? Infamy? A step up the career ladder? The satisfaction of winning a hand in marriage to someone picked from a lineup? Even the prizes of Reality competition reinforce imbalanced root chakra development.

In truth, there is nothing wrong with any of that. It's just entertainment, right? Healthy competition? Being able to examine the foremost influences in our lives isn't about judging what is right and wrong. It's about being able to hold the full picture of those influences, even when the full picture isn't what is readily presented, and to know what is healthy for you, by virtue of your connection with yourself and All That Is. By having mastered the root chakra, the supportive connection to All allows us to make choices with compassionate discernment. Reality TV focuses on the shadows of the root chakra, or the behaviors that manifest when the root chakra isn't well-developed. By all measure, we live in a culture that ignores its shadows. We repress anger, fear, jealousy, greed, sexuality, etc. So when programming comes along that captures and capitalizes on basically every shadow that we tend to repress, it's logical that we would collectively come to use that influence as a means of and parameter for expressing our own shadows.

So what does it mean? That our television programming is largely based on the energetic challenges meant for a one year old? Does it mean that we are mastering the lessons of our own roots? Maybe. Maybe through those light beams bouncing from satellite to satellite we are actually having the worst of our base development projected into our homes -- a cosmic mirror for closer examination. Maybe Reality TV is actually higher consciousness programming, a real kick in the root to take the responsibility upon ourselves to remember that there are loads more chakras that need to be mastered, each with their own shadows and strengths whose success of mastery relies on wellness in our relationship to the first chakra.

And just maybe the deities of Reality TV are telling us that no matter where you are in the development of your root chakra, you can be the triumphant warrior, and the last kid picked for the kickball team, and all the feelings that come with whatever you perceive yourself to be... are all just fine.

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