Candle gazing meditation is also known as Trataka meditation or Yogic gazing. It is an effective meditation practice that will help improve your concentration as well as increasing the strength of your eyes! Have you heard about the candle gazing practice technique and are curious on exactly how to do it? Perhaps you’re wondering why people would stare at a candle for an hour or more? Or maybe you just want to add the understanding of this practice into your meditation library!
Regardless of what might have brought you here, I will provide you with all the steps you need to begin with Trataka meditation immediately!
Items to Consider
When you start practicing in meditation consistently you will find that you will want a dedicated meditation space. This space will serve as a reminder of your practice and also hold and cycle the positive energy you generate there each day while meditating. To create your space you can check out our Useful Meditation Gear to help you visualize and create your personalized meditation space.
To vastly improve your comfort and effectiveness of your meditation with only a small arsenal of meditation gear to start with you might consider these options:
- A set of natural Meditation Candles
- Buckwheat Meditation Cushion – a meditation cushion to provide ergonomic support in the shape of a circle or rounded crescent
- A meditation blanket or shawl to wrap yourself during meditation – My favorites are the Mexican Yoga Blanket and the Tibetan Meditation Shawl
- A meditation timer to track your time for you like the iHome Zenergy Meditative Timer
Everything else you may choose to find could be considered more optional than these main items. You will find that these will be the most effective towards improving your meditation practice in the beginning.
Your Candle´s Color
In regards to the meditation candles you choose, you may be interested in choosing a specific color to meditate with. Each color has been proposed to represent different elements of our universe within the physical and metaphysical realms. Each color also holds different meanings in different cultures like Western Culture vs Hindi Culture.
This means that colors can hold different meanings to you based on your experiences than the same color that may mean something different for somebody else. It would be most effective to meditate on the color that resonates most with you and evaluate what this color means to you. Then, I would find a candle of that color as well or you could just get this set of Multi-Colored Beeswax Tealight Candles if you´d prefer to have a variety of colors!
Below you can follow along with the video to be audibly and visually guided through your first candle gazing meditation experience:
Practicing Candle Gazing Meditation
Candle gazing meditation, or trataka sadhana, is categorized as a type of hatha yoga. Consistently applying this practice into your life will help you increase your focus and improve your memory. You will find that through this increased focus you will be able to regain wasted energy and redirect this energy towards manifesting a space of peace and happiness within you.
The practice is also helpful for beginners who are having trouble with their wandering minds escaping them constantly during a closed-eyes meditation session. Trataka will aid you in honing your focus down to an acute, singular point to reduce the consistency of the wandering mind. This intense level of focus will translate into your life with every action that you take if you consistently maintain your practice.
Step 1: Prepare Your Space
First, you will want to prepare your meditation space. It is best to be in a dark room and allow the candle to be the only element of light in the room. Ensure that your space will be quiet and undisturbed. I would recommend to turn off your mobile phone or any technology that may distract you unnecessarily during your meditation.
Place your chosen candle upon a surface that will keep the candle at eye-level while you are sitting.
Step 2: Prepare Yourself
Next, it is best to wear comfortable and loose clothing – especially around the knees and waist. Wrap your shawl or blanket around yourself to keep yourself warm and place your chosen meditation seat where you wish to sit, near the candle.
Sit upon the seat and light your candle.
Step 3: Meditate
You will now begin and continue your meditation for as long a time as you have chosen or can stand it. The practice is considered to be over when your tear ducts involuntarily begin to flow.
Continue to meditate and watch the flame. As you become bored your body will begin to desire movement. Resist against this feeling and allow your consciousness to become fully enveloped within the light of the flame.
Observe… Breathe… Flow… Observe… Breathe… Flow…
Watch the flame. Learn the flame. Know that the flame appears to be consistent but is actually combusting and disappearing at such a rapid rate that your mind is fooled to believe that it is a single flame when it is actually many flames.
Continue to observe and let go of any thought patterns that rise up. Allow your mind to be empty and open. Continue to observe.
Step 4: Rest
When you feel your meditation come to an end you should take a moment to lie down and rest. Close your eyes and rest for a few minutes. Allow the feelings of relaxation to course through the parts of your body that have grown tense and tired from meditation.
Rest and again allow your mind to be clear. Observe the sensations within your body. Relax.
Let your eyes open naturally, slowly. Come back into your body fluidly and rise up. Extinguish the candle´s flame.
Step 5: Reflect
Now is a perfect time for reflection. Retrieve your meditation journal and write your meditation experience in the journal. You may choose to put a date and time with the journal entry or you may not. Write freely and openly without any intention or goal to the words. Just write the experience as objectively as you remember it.
As the days go on…
Now that you have a deeper understanding and practical knowledge of candle gazing meditation you will find the lessons from the practice will begin to apply themselves to your daily life. Do not try to meld the two yourself but know that the perspective of reality that is your world will begin to translate into knowledge and wisdom through your meditation practice.
The key is to maintain consistency. Start your practice but then, continue your practice. I would love to hear what you´ve learned or even your reflections if you feel comfortable sharing within our community. Enjoy your practice and meditate well, my friend.