Drishti for Focus
Drishti is the sanskrit word for gaze. It is used both externally and internally. It is not only what we see, but how we see it. When I teach yoga, I tell students to focus their drishti on a goal that they want to achieve in their yoga practice. This is internal focus, asking the students to look inward to discover what they need from yoga for that day. I tell students to focus their gaze on a point while balancing. This is an external drishti; focusing on a stabilizing point can help balance.
The eyes are the windows to the soul. When we shift our inner vision, our outer vision changes and leads us to the truth. Physically, when we keep our eyes fixed on one spot, it will help us stay balanced and centered while in a yoga pose. We cut away the clutter around us when our vision is fixed.
Focus Your Sight
When we keep our eyes focused on one spot while practicing yoga, we employ a calming technique. Balancing poses like vrkasana, are challenging, but we remain calmer when our eyes gaze a one point. Gazing at one thing helps us to minimize distractions and keep the mind focused. Each yoga pose has a specific drishti attached to the pose form and alignment. We should never feel that our eyes are straining.
Internal drishti happens when our sight is on higher goals and ideals for our yoga practice. This insight is necessary to convert knowledge into wisdom.
Yoga Practice for Focus
Come into Warrior 2, Virabhadrasana B, on your right side. Look beyond your right middle finger, gazing almost at the space around it. Don’t look, but see instead. Use your peripheral vision to see the space around your arm as well without moving the eyes. Become more conscious of your surroundings. Sink your eyes into their sockets and relax your eye this way. Take 5 breaths and switch sides.
Credit for Drishti practice to The Yoga Mind by Rina Jakubowicz
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