What is TRATAK and how to do

Author at Khidrapur Temple near Kolhapur.
  • Article tells you what is Tratak, how to do and its benefits.

We are living in a world where it is becoming increasingly difficult to avoid use of digital screens, gadgets like computers, laptops and mobiles. This is taking a toll on our muscles (i.e. skeletal, smooth & cardiac muscles). These muscles support our bones and vital organs so need strengthening with specific techniques.


Some muscles are voluntary, others involuntary like eye muscles. Our eye muscles are semi-voluntary, more used and hence its overuse drains these muscles. Therefore, soothing them and vacuuming of eyes on a regular interval is needed for healthy eyes.


Since Ayurveda & Yoga emphasize prevention than treating they include a variety of practices. Tratak is a significant Yogic purification technique for eyes, respective objects and their mutual connection.


The word TRATAK is derived from the word truti. Trut means broken pieces that can still be united and exist in one form. It is one of the Shatkram (Six Methods) to clean and strengthen the mind, hence TRATAK is also one of the Shuddhi Kriya (Cleansing Process).


Tratak simply means paying attention on an object. The object could be an external object or within us. As human beings we are gifted with five sense organs that are dedicated to gaining knowledge. However, to perceive things without ambiguity, we need to focus our attention continuously on one object for a longer period of time. Since mind is pre-occupied with numerous thoughts, it is a challenge to direct it to one object for longer time, hence we needs training skills which is where Tratak helps.


Benefits of Tratak

Eliminates strain on eye muscles and strengthens eyesight.

Increases voluntary control, for some time, on eyelid muscles.

Cleans mind of negative thoughts.

Strengthens mind by removing Rajasik and Tamasik gunas.

Enhances Satvik Guna which leads to improved memory and concentration.

Puts us on the spiritual path.

Stabilises Prana that lies within us.

When the mind is charged with emotions, it helps keep the mind stable.   

Hathpradipika traditional yogic texts say Tratak, prevents eye diseases and gives vitality.



Average duration can be as 2 minutes. It also depends on practitioners’ ability.


Akash Tratak. Khidrapur Mandir near Kolhapur. Dancing hall has a circular opening to the sky. 


Trataka Process


Nirikshenniscaladsa sukshmalaksha samahita

Ashrusampatparyantmachacharya stratak smrutam!! Hathapradpika 2/32

It means that, one should practice Tratak by keeping gaze steady on a small object, without blinking eyelashes & eyelids until tears roll down from the eyes. Then one can close eyes and ponder on the mental image of same object within.


This is a type of meditation and contemplation process that enhances memory and improves concentration.


Types of Tratak

1. Bahya Tratak (External Tratak) - Paying attention on an external object. Eyes remain open and directed towards object. Next meditate on it as per capacity.

The object of focus could be Candle flame - Jyoti tratak, Tip of the nose, Dot - Bindu Tratak, Water - Jala Tratak, a Murti (deity), Omkar sign and a photograph.

2. Antar Tratak (Internal Tratak) - Paying attention on a body part. Eyes remain closed and directed towards an internal object. Next meditate on it as per capacity.

The object of focus could be Centre of Eye - Agna chakra tratak, Bindu tratak, and Water - Jala Tratak etc.

Precautions while practicing Tratak 

1. Avoiding body movements during the process of gazing objects.

2. Close eyes for some time if the eyes start watering & restart it.

3. Mainly to do this process in calm, quite & little dark light environment.

4. Those suffering from heart problems and eye diseases should not practice Tratak.

To summarise Tratak is the way of cleansing, contemplating and paying undivided attention on one object. It aligns the external and internal worlds within us and takes us on the transcendent state of peace & bliss.

Author  is a Graduate in Ayurveda from Mumbai University and a Master in Yogashastra. Also, she is qualified for a professor in Yoga. She has been practicing Ayurved and Yoga at Kaivalyadhama Mumbai for many years. She is also a recipient of international Panacea Excellence Award 2018. Photographs by author. 


To see Videos 


1. A short lesson in Trataka using your thumb by Yogacharya Dr Ananda B Bhavanani


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