Essentially, a block keeps us from living as our authentic self. Usually blocks are composed of strongholds, mental or emotional programs that keep us stuck in a pattern that isn’t good for us. There are two basic types of strongholds. A mental stronghold is made of two or more beliefs that join together but never come apart. For instance, we might touch a stove and get burned. We now think, “Stoves can burn” and also “Getting burned, hurts.” These aren’t bad thoughts. In fact, they can be helpful; we’ll think twice before we touch another hot stove. A problem arises if we keep these two thoughts joined together to create a stronghold, or a belief that detracts from our life, or even causes harm. A resulting, negative stronghold might be the conclusion that because stoves burn and getting burned, hurts, then stoves are bad. This idea isn’t all that traumatic—it might spare us a great deal of cooking—but what if we formulate a mental stronghold like, “Anything that can burn is bad”? This type of stronghold can lead to a full-blown paranoia and we might avoid anything from sunlight to love, which can cause its own “burn.”
An emotional stronghold is formed from at least one thought and one feeling. These underlie many of our most challenging life issues. For example, imagine a sixteen-year-old who has just gone through his first relationship break-up. He feels sad. He thinks, “Breaking up hurts.” The feeling of sadness joins with the belief that breaking up causes pain. There’s nothing wrong with a temporary merging of a feeling and a thought. We are constantly trying in different beliefs and feelings; they instruct us on how to respond to a given situation. But what if our sixteen year-old would decide that a relationship, a necessary prerequisite to a break-up, is itself, dangerous? To avoid the sadness of a break-up, he might now avoid relationships altogether. Strongholds, such as this one, often underlie lifestyle and relationship issues.
There are also spiritual strongholds, which are similar to mental and emotional strongholds. These are composed of beliefs or feelings that bond together and relate specifically to spiritual issues. Examples involve ideas relating to deservedness of Divine love or acceptance of universal abundance.
A stronghold becomes a block when it fails to release when we’re through with it, and becomes programmed into our energetic system.
Excerpted with permission from The Complete Book of Chakra Healing All content ©Cyndi Dale and Llewellyn Books.