Candle gazing, also known as trataka, is a centuries-old yogic purification practice that involves staring at a fixed point or, more commonly, a candle flame. The word trataka in Sanskrit means “to gaze,” and the practice is believed to bring energy to one’s third-eye (sixth) chakra. The benefits of candle gazing include improved vision, memory, and concentration.
Therapeutic Benefits of Candle Gazing
As we age, it’s natural for our bodies to begin to break down. For instance, eye health deteriorates. A trataka practice can correct errors of refraction and strengthen the ability of the eye to adjust better to distances. It can also strengthen the muscles around the eyes.
Just as importantly, candle gazing has been shown to improve cognitive function in elderly people. It helps balance the nervous system and can be effective in relieving tension, anxiety, depression, and insomnia.
Spiritual Benefits of Candle Gazing
The spiritual benefits of a candle gazing practice are about bringing harmony and inner peace into your life. Trataka helps you develop strong willpower, intense concentration, and it improves clarity, focus, and memory.
[Read: “Spiritual Fire: A Candle-Burning Ritual for Happiness.”]
Because candle gazing encourages you to focus on just the flame in front of you (preferably in a dark room), your concentration has nowhere else to go. If practiced regularly, your conscious mind gets a “workout,” and improved concentration and focus carry over into your spiritual practices. It’s also an excellent way to prepare yourself for meditation.
Physical Benefits of Candle Gazing
In addition to improving general eye health, trataka is beneficial for those who suffer from glaucoma, nearsightedness, as well as diabetes.
On top of all that, candle gazing improves sleep and energizes the body so you physically feel better and are able to accomplish more throughout each day. Candle gazing is especially effective when combined with your yoga practice.
[Read: “Drishti: Ancient Yoga Technique for Balance, Vision, and Focus.”]