The Hara is sometimes called a chakra in certain metaphysical schools. Although similar to a chakra, the hara is fundamentally different, it's in a league of its own.
The Hara is located at the navel, about two inches inwards from the skin. It is the gateway into the etheric envelope surrounding the planet. This portal is called the Hara by the Taoists and is very often referred to in martial arts. Hara means ‘sea of energy’ and this is exactly what it is. The etheric envelope is like an infinite ocean of energy. It is no coincidence that as a fetus you were fed through the navel. In fact you could still feed (on energy) through the Hara if you were to open all energetic blockages in the belly.
When the umbilical cord was cut when you were first born you suffered a trauma due to the physical pain which caused your etheric body to close at this point. The physical body closed from the outside as the skin healed together forming the belly button and at the same time the etheric body closed from within, cutting off your connection to the Hara. The Hara is a gateway, opening into the planets’ etheric. It is a passive portal and does not force anything into you. To gain energy from the Hara it must be sucked out, so to speak. For example: as a fetus you were drawing nutrients through the umbilical cord and at the same time drawing energy through the Hara. When the umbilical cord was cut you stopped drawing nutrients through the navel and also stopped drawing energy through the Hara. Because you stopped actively drawing energy through the Hara and because of the physical and emotional trauma, the energies around the Hara quickly closed over. As Samskaras formed and your energy bodies became more chaotic with age, the Hara was buried deeper still, cutting you off from its powers.
The Hara is the center of the etheric or chi body. It is about an inch in diameter and is the gateway into the ocean of chi. Around the Hara and with it as the center there is an envelope of energy called the ‘tan tien’. This tan tien is a ball of etheric energy about the size of a soccer ball. It is filled from the Hara and is often called ‘the cauldron’ in Taoist alchemical texts. This ball of energy interacts with all the organs and especially the intestines as it is where food is turned into energy. Energy is taken from the food and mixed in the tan tien or cauldron before being distributed throughout the body. Having the Hara open and a full tan tien is vital for real health and vitality. Unfortunately most people have many Samskaras and energetic blockages in this area and the fullness that should be felt in the tan tien is absent. This is the main cause of many addictions especially to food. Constantly eating and overeating are an attempt to feel full despite a blocked Hara and empty tan tien.
The Hara and tan tien are very important for the work of Inner Alchemy and especially with the work of Tantric Sex and Inner Power Cultivation. By following the tantric sex practices in Tantric Secrets you will quickly open the Hara and become aware of your tan tien.