Tratak – the technique of gazing
IF you look at a flame for a long time for a few months, one hour every day, your third eye starts functioning perfectly. You become more alert, more lightfilled.
The word tratak comes from the root which means tears, so you have to look at the flame until tears start flowing from the eyes. Go on staring, unblinking, and the third eye will start vibrating.
The technique of gazing is not concerned really with the object, it is concerned with gazing itself. Because when you stare without blinking your eyes, you become focussed, and the nature of the mind is to be constantly moving. If you are really gazing, not moving at all, the mind is bound to be in a difficulty.
The nature of the mind is to move from one object to another, to move constantly. If you are gazing at darkness or at light or at something else, if you are really gazing, the movement of the mind stops. Because if the mind goes on moving, your gaze will not be there; you will go on missing the object. When the mind has moved somewhere else, you will forget, you will not be able to remember what you were looking at. The object will be there physically, but for you it will have disappeared because you are not there; you have moved in thought.
Gazing means, tratak means, not allowing your consciousness to move. And when you are not allowing the mind to move, in the beginning it struggles, struggles hard, but if you go on practising gazing, by and by the mind loses struggling. For moments it stops. And when mind stops there is no mind, because mind can exist only in movement, thinking can exist only in movement. When there is no movement, thinking disappears, you cannot think, because thinking means movement – moving from one thought to another. It is a process.
If you gaze continuously at one thing, fully aware and alert… because you can gaze through dead eyes, then you can go on thinking – only eyes, dead eyes, not looking. Just with dead men’s eyes you can look, but your mind will be moving. That will not be of any help. Gazing means not only your eyes, but your total mind focussed through the eyes.
So whatsoever the object – it depends: if you like light, it is okay, if you can like darkness, good. Whatsoever the object, deeply it is irrelevant – the question is to stop the mind completely in your gaze, to focus it, so the inner movement, the fidgeting, stops; the inner wavering stops. You are simply looking, not doing anything. That deep looking will change you completely. It will become a meditation.