A chakra is a center of activity that receives, assimilates, and expresses life force energy. The word chakra literally translates as a wheel or disk and refers to a spinning sphere of bio-energetic activity emanating from the major nerve ganglia branching forward from the spinal column. There are seven of these wheels stacked in a column of energy that spans from the base of the spine to the top of the head. There are also minor chakras in the hands, feet, fingertips, and shoulders. Literally, any vortex of activity could be called a chakra. It is the seven major chakras that correlate with basic states of consciousness.