Gazing meditation is described a lot on this forum and this is a guide from a Yoga practitioners perspective.
What is Gazing Meditation or Tratak?
Gazing or Tratak as it is called in Yoga is a meditation where the eyes remain open. It is an ideal meditation practice for beginners and regular meditators alike thanks to it’s simplicity and effectiveness. Tratak is most commonly performed with a candle but one can equally well use various other objects to target ones gaze. More on that below.
What does Gazing or Tratak do?
Gazing is an excellent way to improve focus and concentration as well as purifying the Mind on a physical level. It stills the river of thought and induces mental calm.
On a spiritual level it awakens the Kundalini and suffuses the Third Eye (or Ajna Chakra) with energy.
This opens you up to Psychic powers such as Clairvoyance and Astral sight.
How to practice Tratak
Now the fun part. Practice!
Tratak or gazing is quite versatile. Any object can be chosen for your meditation and I’ll go through some common ones further below.
Place your object at around a meter (3 feet) distance at eye level and sit down in a comfortable position. This can be on the floor in a cross-legged position or on a chair. Just see to it that you have a comfortable upright position. You can also lay down if you have a point on the ceiling that you can gaze at.
As you come into your chosen posture, just let yourself relax. To help with that you can take a few comfortable heavy breaths and relax from the top down on each out breath. Start with your head. Relax your eyes and face, the jaw and neck. Then work your way down your shoulders, arms, hands, back, legs and other places where you might have tension.
Take your chosen object for this meditation and look at it. Gazing at it softly and without straining your eyes by staring at it. When you blink, try to focus on the afterimage.
While doing this you will notice that your peripheral vision is going to blur until you only see the object. This is what you want and quite normal. Your eyes might strain and want to blink. This too is normal. Your eyes are not used to being open for a longer period of time. Just blink once and gaze back at your object. Do this for your chosen amount of time.
As I mentioned above your eyes might be irritated by protracted gazing. Tearing up is not uncommon. Just blink when you need to and return to your gazing. Try to avoid rapid blinking as this will pull you out of meditation.
You can also close your eyes and hold the afterimage in your mind between your eyebrows until it dissipates. This is a valid variation.
Your eyes might want to cross after some time of this and softly try to avoid this. Crossing them will relieve your eyes somewhat but will hinder you from clearly seeing anything that comes up Astraly or Clairvoyantly.
Aching head or eyes
Headaches and aching eyes are also some common problems for beginners. Listen to your body. If it get’s too much for you, back off and break the meditation. With practice it will get better and easier.
Always listen to your body to avoid injury!
What you can expect
During this meditation you might well feel pressure between your eyebrows. This is good and a sign that your Third Eye is being activated. Do not fret if you don’t feel this. It is still working. I have days where it is non existent or comes in waves.
You will start seeing shadows, lights and other optical distortions. This is a sign of you going deeper. At this stage I can often see Auras even though I’m neither psychically or astrally evolved yet.
At this stage you come into trance. If that is your goal, congrats. Otherwise return to your object and ignore the distortions.
Objects and Variations
A candle flame is the most widely used object for Tratak, as it is easy to hold an after image of the bright flame when you close your eyes.
You should place the candle at eye level in a dark, draft-free room.
Symbol, Sigil or Deity
Traditionally in Yoga you gaze at the OM Symbol. This can be replaced with a Symbol you wish to work with, be it Sigil, picture or statue of a Deity/Demon/Angel or other symbolic representation.
Choose an object size that your eyes can easily encompass.
The natural world offers a multitude of suitable objects. You can gaze at a flower in the daytime or anything associated with your general practice as a which or shaman etc. In the night time you can affix your gaze at the moon or a star or constellation so long as it’s unmoving and unobscured.
As above, choose an object your eyes can encompass.
Third Eye Gazing
Gazing at the point between your eyebrows awakens the Kundalini and stimulates your Ajna Chakra more.
Gaze between your eyebrows with your eyes open. Do this in front of a wall or ceiling.
Warning: Start out with just a few minutes. This is very taxing on your eyes.
As always, listen to your body and refrain from undue strain.
Choose lighting that won’t strain your eyes unnecessarily. A bright neon light will not do you any favors.
Start short and work up to longer practice time.
I can only guide out of my own experience and the standards of teaching in Yoga. Therefore I can not yet with any certainty claim from sources about Astral travel, Spirit communication Channeling, Telepathy or Clairvoyance in connection with Tratak/ Gazing will manifest, but I do believe them.
I hope this is of use to you and I wish you success in your practice.
Feel free to share your non-yogic variations or experiences if you wish.
I’m sure readers will appreciate it.