I’ve spoken many times about the body’s energy system. I’m not an expert but there are worthwhile observations to make.
A set of 7 universal chakras or energy wheels is inserted into the bliss body and serves as a scaffolding for building life-forms. The chakras are progressively more expressed up into the energy body of specific forms. Sub-chakras are also found at various key points. Interconnecting the various chakras are energy tubes known as nadis. The larger chakras also have a spiky array of terminated nadis called chakra databanks that express the emphasis of laws of nature (devata) in that form.
Prana or life-force flows through the nadis, nourishing and sending information around the body. This forms the underpinning of the nervous, circulatory, and lymphatic systems.
There is a related system of understanding known these days as Marma points. They’re not a separate system so much as a distinct way of looking at the energy system. Marma points are energy nodes where parts meet such as at nerve plexuses, joints, veins, ligaments, and so forth. They’re more about flow and where prana is focused than structure.
They were originally called Bindu (point) in Vedic times but were revived in a martial arts tradition as a way of disabling enemies. This is because blocking certain points can cause loss of consciousness or death (cue Spock). Ayurveda later adopted the understanding for therapy. Marma therapy is similar to Chinese acupressure.
There are said to be 107 primary marma points with the mind being the 108th. Marma therapy apparently focuses on body fluids and biochemistry, releasing blockages in flow. Yoga asanas help stimulate marma points. We might think of them as nodes but they have a character like a glow.
Chakras are most obvious in the energy body while marmas are more prominent on the field levels. The small ones are more specific but we commonly experience the large ones as more diffuse than chakras.
In a sense, the chakras are the masculine, creating the underling structure. Marmas are the feminine, more about the flow through the structure.
Of particular interest are the three Mahamarmas or great points. They are Sthapati (head), Hridaya (heart), and Basti (gut).
You may notice right away the connection to higher stages. I’ve often spoken of a head, heart, gut process in early stages of enlightenment. I’ve also referred to Hridaya as a higher octave version of the heart chakra, not realizing the term was for a mahamarma. Obviously, clearing the marmas is key to an embodied enlightenment.
Sthapati mahamarma is directed to the world through the senses. The throat, mouth, and voice are also related. It is associated with Saraswati, the goddess of music and knowledge. She is the Shakti of creation.
Hridaya mahamarma speaks the language of higher feelings. It is the balancer, the liaison between the outward head and inner gut, between Divine cognition and relative understanding. It is associated with Lakshmi, goddess of prosperity. She is the Shakti of dharma, sustaining power.
Basti mahamarma is about digesting food and our experiences of world, turning them it into our body. It has many neural connections, some suggest more than the brain. Basti communicates by intention. It is associated with Durga, the goddess and Shakti of destruction.
You’ll notice by the description that the mahamarmas are larger and more inclusive than the nearby chakras. While the heart chakra, for example, is in the center of the chest near the physical heart, the heart mahamarma fills the whole chest if it’s awake. Similarly, the head fills the head, and the gut covers the whole of digestion.
This also explains why there is the emphasis on these 3 areas over other centers like the throat.