The Aura or electromagnetic field that surrounds and interpenetrates with the human body is ovoid in shape. The widest part is around the head and the narrowest beneath the feet. It comprises seven layers, each layer slightly larger then it's predecessor.
The seven layers constitute the physical body; the etheric sheath or energy body; the astral sheath or emotional body; the mental body; the higher mental; the casual and the bodyless body.
The bodyless body establishes that Divine part of us which has no beginning and no ending; which through practices such as meditation, enables us to realize and become one with it. From the moment of birth we are subject to conditioning. Through this, we forget our life's purpose. We then become like travelers working our way across a strange country without a map. Apart from conditioning, we are also given free will. This enables us to choose which path we take. Unfortunately, we do not always choose the correct one. How many times can you remember sitting at one of life's crossroads. Intuitively you know which way you should travel but insight reveals it to be a very stony and difficult path, so you take what looks to be the easier way. This may prove to be correct for a time but gradually you will be brought back by your higher self to the path which you intuitively felt to be correct. Our true self knows its chosen way and will, at all costs, continually confront us with it until we find the courage to take it.
The higher mental body could be called the voice of our intuition. If we learn to "tune in" to this part of our self, we are able to receive Divine inspiration. The answers to life's problems will be revealed and we will be taught spiritual truths and cosmic law. The law which creation adheres to and works with.
The mental body is connect with thought. Each thought that we think creates a pattern or form. These accumulate in the mental body and can be projected out into the environment, surrounding us with thought forms which we and other individuals have created.
These thought forms also attract the thought forms surrounding us that are of a similar nature. Therefore, if we think negative thoughts we will attract negative thought forms; likewise, positive thoughts attract positive thought forms. It is therefore important to have a positive outlook on life, especially when working with self-healing.
When working with absent healing, the mental body is part of the aura with which we work. We visualize the person who has requested healing lying in peaceful surroundings. We then create beautiful healing forms and project them to the patient. The greater the control we have over the mental body, the greater the strength of healing. When we have acquired the power of thought, it must only be used for the good of others. Remember the law of karma; what ever good you do be repaid with good; what ever evil, retribution will follow. In other words, "what you send out, returns to you."
The emotional or astral sheath is our "feeling" body. In those people who have not learned to be the master over their emotions, this body is in a state of imbalance. Because it is interspersed with the other layers of the aura and the physical body, these too are affected. It is similar to one of the organs of the physical body being diseased and the rest of the body being affected through trying to compensate for it.
The sheath nearest to the physical body is the etheric. The etheric and physical body are closely interwoven and disintegrate together at death. Every physical particle has its etheric counterpart, which is a perfect replica of the physical form. This is why it is known as the etheric double, and why people who have had a limb amputated can still feel pain or sensation from it - it is still present in it's etheric form. The etheric lays down the basic pattern upon which the physical body is directly related to the tone and quality of the etheric body. Apart from containing the nadis, it contains seven major and twenty-one minor chakras plus numerous acupuncture points. A major chakra is defined by the crossing of twenty-one energy lines, a minor chakra constitutes fourteen energy lines, and an acupuncture point is seven.
The Nadis are the very fine energy channels that are within the same sheath or "Chuchumna" or chakra tube, through which pranic energy flows. This network of infinitely intricate nadis constitutes the counterpart of the entire nervous system which forms an important part of the human mechanism. The number of nadis are numerous. Some ancient documents state there to be 72,000, while others say there are as many as 350,000.