Seeing With the Mind’s Eye

The mind’s eye, also known as the third eye, is spiritually located between the eyes at the level of the brow.  Physically, it has been related to the pineal gland which resides within the brain directly between the right and left sides – deep center to the spiritual third eye mark.

René Descartes called this pine cone shaped gland the “principal seat of the soul, and the place in which all our thoughts are formed.” His reasoning was “since our soul is not double, but one and indivisible, […] the part of the body to which it is most immediately joined should also be single and not divided into a pair of similar parts.”

Researchers still exploring its full purpose believe that the pineal gland is responsible for our circadian or biological rhythm.  This rhythm is determined by the amount of light the pineal gland detects.  Each evening as the sky darkens, the pineal gland triggers the release of the hormone melatonin. Conversely, as daylight approaches the gland ceases its melatonin production. In this way, the pineal gland controls the sleep-wake cycle.

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This sensitivity to our environment has kept our mind’s eye impacting us in many powerful ways. It’s sanskrit name, ajna, means the perception or command center. When maintained and balanced, it is believed that this chakra’s energy can give us clearer intuition, insight and vision.

In assembling this post, I came across a quote from Edgar Allan Poe that described his perception of this mysterious third eye.

“That intuitive and seemingly casual perception by which we often attain knowledge, when reason herself falters and abandons the effort, appears to resemble the sudden glancing at a star, by which we see it more clearly than by a direct gaze; or the half-closing the eyes in looking at a plot of grass, the more fully to appreciate the intensity of its green.” 

Intrigued?

Here are some additional techniques and approaches to stimulate your insightfulness:

  • Focus on a positive thought or image.
  • Use  cedarwood*, frankincense*, or sandalwood* essential oil.  To reach the pineal gland, inhale the aroma of the oil or place a diluted drop in between the eyebrows.
  • Keep a dream journal. Record any images and feelings you get immediately after waking.
  • Keep a “sense” journal. Write down impressive smells, sensations, feelings, or urges – anything that sticks with you.
  • Watch the sunrise or the sunset.
  • Get out of your monkey mind by meditating, taking a walk or a soothing bath- add a few drops of essential oils* to your water.

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YOLY Challenge #23: Take the Bridge to Clarity

Focus on the space between your eyes, this is the seat of your perception center, sometimes referred to as the mind’s eye.

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The third eye or ajna chakra allows us to see things as they are meant to be seen – it is the connection to the quiet voice of the soul.

I call this challenge “The Bridge to Clarity” because as we make our journey to the higher chakras, we cross over into a new realm.  On the other side is greater access to our dreams, intuition and imagination. When we begin to attend to our third-eye, we find ourselves more lucid, balanced and clear.

Our posture work this week will pave the way to this new state of being.

Fine-tune your mind’s eye with these daily postures:

Tree Pose (with your eyes closed): a wonderful way to get more insight into this pose through balance.

Supported Seated Forward Bend: descend into a comfortable place and support your forehead to increase blood flow to the brain and become more inward.

Child’s Pose:  make this as supportive as you can and cushion the forehead slightly – give attention to the third eye as you restore.

Viparita Karani (Legs Up the Wall): use an eye bag and detach from your surroundings.

 “The superior person settles her mind as the universe settles the stars in the sky. By connecting her mind with the subtle origin, she calms it. Once calmed, it naturally expands, and ultimately her mind becomes as vast and immeasurable as the night sky.”  -Lao Tzu

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