By Acharya Shree Dhruv
Dhotirvastistatha Netishtratkam Nowlikam Tatha Kapalbhatischetani Khastkarmani Prachate — Hathayog Pradipika
According to Hathayog Pradipika, there are six types of hathayoga: dhauti, vasti, neti, nauli, tratak and kapalbhati. These are all yogic processes (shat karma) which apart from imparting physical and mental peace also provide spiritual power. The first four, i.e., dhauti, vasti, neti and nauli are related to purification of the body, while the last two, tratak and kapalbhati, are related to spiritual achievements.
How does tratak sadhana affect us
The flow of thoughts in our brain is an on-going process. Due to this, 80 per cent of our energy is wasted and our central nerve system loses its balance. But when we attain tratak sadhana, gradually we start experiencing peace of mind, and thereafter we start getting rid of unwanted thoughts. With this process we start gaining more and more energy. And a time comes when we are able to perform an unusual feat.
But what is tratak sadhana? It is defined as focusing your attention with concentration on a point or on the flame of a lamp continuously, without blinking.
Three types of tratak sadhana
(a) Inner tratak Sadhana
(b) Middle tratak sadhana
(c) Outer tratak sadhana
Inner tratak sadhana is closing the eyes and focusing your attention on the middle of your forehead, where Lord Shiva’s third eye is located. In the beginning you may feel some pain or heat in your head but do not worry, as it will normalise gradually. Try to keep your entire attention on this point.
Benefits: With this yogic action you can hypnotise any person who is very far from you. It will also help in building your confidence, intelligence and patience. It will even take away negative thoughts and desires from your mind and will give you peace.
In Middle tratak sadhana, focus your eyes and attention on either the flame of a lamp (which is lit by the oil of black sesame) or on a crystal shivlinga. If you get a burning sensation in your eyes, close your eyes for some time and then again repeat this kriya (process). For this kriya, keep the lamp or shivlinga at a distance of 20 inches at eye level so that there is no strain or pressure on your neck.
Benefits: Improves concentration, memory and mental power. Besides, you get foresight, hypnotic and spiritual power. It also increases your working efficiency and the ability to read others’ mind.
Outer tartak sadhna can be performed at anytime of the day or night, by focusing your eyes and attention on any object like the sun, moon, stars. Those who have a weak eyesight cannot perform this.
Benefits: Helps in getting rid of mental disorders and improves motivational power and foresight.
Do suksham pranayam before practising tratak because this sadhana requires mental peace. If your mind is not peaceful or comfortable, you cannot be successful. With suksham pranayama you can control your mind.
Rules of suksham pranayama:
Sit in sukhasan without any body movement and take in and release long deep breaths slowly. This has to be done for 21 days regularly for 15 minutes a day. It will be better to start trarak sadhana after this.
For tratak sadhana:
1. Sit on a blanket in sukhasna or sidhasna and keep back, neck and spine straight.
2. Keep negative thoughts and lust away from your mind.
3. Do tratak with dedication, patience, and concentration.
4. Always practice in a closed room and be by yourself.
5. It is effective if practiced at a fixed place and time.
6. Out of the three ways of practicing tratak, choose the one with which you feel comfortable.
7. Try to spend more or equal time in this sadhana as you spend on the first day.
8. Leave all addictions.
9. Those suffering from tuberculosis, heart diseases, leprosy, and eye diseases should not practice tratak.
10. While practicing, do not move your body. Sit like a statue.
11. Practice after taking bath and wear loose clothes, preferably white.
12. Choose any one of three kriyas and practice it continuously for three months.
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