The knowledge and teachings on the chakras come from yoga - the oldest system of addressing the development of the whole person. Yoga is a philosophical system and meditative practice directed toward mastery of one's body, mind, breath, and spirit. A goal in yoga is liberation from suffering and union with our divinity. The ultimate significance of the practice of yoga lies in the recognition of our highest Self and when we live in our highest Self we contribute to the greater good of all. 

Chakras are centers of awareness in the human body. These energy centers are neither physical nor anatomical. They are found in the subtle energy system, although their energy corresponds to certain existing systems within the body. Chakras influence cells, organs, and the entire hormone system, can affect thoughts and feelings, and are centers of psychic energy.