“prayana-kale manasa’ calena bhaktya yukto yoga-balena caiva bhruvor madhye pranam avesya samyak sa tam param purusam upaiti divyam”
Bhagwat Gita (Chapter 8 verse 10).
This verse above is from Bhagwat Gita, and says (loosely translated) that one who with a still mind knows ‘yoga’ the science of uniting individual consciousness with the universal supreme consciousness by bringing the life-force energy (or prana) between the eyebrows attains the supreme personality (moksha – liberation from the cycle of birth and death).
The text that follows is a humble (and naïve) attempt to explain the wealth of knowledge offered by this short verse from the great scripture.
Third eye chakra, also known as the Ajna chakra is said to be the eye of the mind. It is located in the space between the two eyebrows, and therefore, sometimes it is also referred to as the brow chakra.
The third eye chakra is associated with the power of intuition, clairvoyance, psychic abilities, and superior consciousness. It allows us to understand the subtler aspect of the physical three dimensional manifestations.
Not only that, it also gives us a glimpse into the higher dimensions that are beyond this present physical reality. Once opened, our third eye gives us access to the unlimited supreme knowledge.
This knowledge is very different from our day to day knowledge which is mostly about objects and events taking place as a result of their interactions. This knowledge shows the absolute truth that is timeless, unchanging and infinite. It is the gateway to true wisdom.
At this point, diversity i.e. many culminates into fundamental duality represented by two petals of the Ajna chakra. The left petal represents ‘Shiva’ (the ultimate truth or reality) and the right petal represents the ‘Shakti’, or the primordial cosmic energy.
This shakti is also known as the kundalini. The word kundala means ‘coil of rope’ in Sanskrit, and that is exactly the orientation in which this energy rests (as potential). This energy rests at the location of the root chakra, where it is coiled up like a serpent. This is why kundalini is often symbolized as a snake.
According to ancient scriptures, there are 72,000 nadis that provides life-force to each and every cell in our body. These are the energy channels through which the divine energy flows. The left petal of the third eye chakra is connected to the ‘Ida’ nadi, whereas, the right petal is connected to the ‘Pingala’ nadi.
Ida nadi is said to be the lunar nadi and is associated with the cooling feminine energy. While the pingala nadi is associated with the power of solar energy, it is stimulating in nature, as opposed to the ida nadi.
Both of these nadis culminate at the point of the third eye where they meet Sushumna, the central nadi, that is the main central energy channel that passes through all of the seven chakras, starting from the root, or Muladhara, and ending at the final crown, or Sahasrara chakra.
When Shiva and Shakti combine and rise to the final crown chakra, at that point, you become the realized one. That indicates the final fulfillment or enlightenment.
You might not know this but you already are Shiva. The only difference is that you have not realized it as yet, because of the veil of ignorance known as maya, which is mind body and causation.
The word ‘Shiva’ is not gender specific. It sounds to be male oriented because of the way it has been projected by the proponents of religion. But in essence, what it represents is a dimension that is formless, unborn, indestructible and infinite.
Our kundalini energy is in restful state and lies dormant in a coiled up form at the base of the root chakra. When this energy gathers momentum and rises upwards, it hits and stimulates various energy points (or chakras) along the way and finally reaches the crown chakra, it’s ultimate destination. That’s when you realize your true self, and the veil of maya is broken.
This marks the end of duality where all the matter and non-matter; subject and object; merge into one fundamental consciousness that is infinite, unchanging, omni-present and all pervading.
And that is said to be the ultimate purpose of life. The union of Shiva and Shakti is what ‘yoga’ is all about. It is the separation that causes ignorance, and that in turn is the root cause of all misery in life.
Pineal Gland is associated with the third eye chakra. It is believed that meditating on the center of eyebrows causes the activation of the pineal gland, and that in turn causes awakening of the psychic functions such as intuition and capability of foresight. This gland also produces a hormone called melatonin that modulates sleep patterns.
Calcification of pineal gland is believed to be the one of reasons why the third eye remains closed. However, this can be overcome by practicing meditation along with a healthy lifestyle.
Symptoms of Third Eye Blockage
Third eye chakra is very powerful and regulates all the chakras below it. If you open your third eye chakra, all the chakras below it are unblocked automatically. The symptoms of third eye blockages are more or less the same as that of the lower chakras.
However, some additional symptoms are as follows:
- You are not able to see the big picture in life. You run after small gratifications and seek instant dopamine release.
- You are confused about the concept of money, fame, success, relationships, and what you want in life.
- Your emotions take over the best of you.
- You are a slave to the inherent tendencies of your subconscious mind, i.e., you say something but do something else. There is a mismatch between your intentions and your actions.
- You’re not able to move forward. You feel stuck in life.
- You don’t have trust in your own intuition. As a result, you attract the wrong people, wrong jobs, wrong relationships, and make bad decisions that you regret later in life.
- You are not authentic and genuine with people around you. You always have to pretend to be a certain way to get acceptance, and that in turn causes unease within you.
- Severe blockage in the third eye chakra can also cause depression, paranoia, and the feeling of worthlessness. And to that extent, you may feel that your whole existence is meaningless.
Most of the people in the world have blocked third eye. This fact is evident from the current state of affairs going on in the word today. People’s apathy towards one another, climate change, global warming, and nature in general, is one big indication of that.
We not only disrespect nature but we have also been actively engaging in creating systems (in the guise of human welfare and economic development) that have no care or concern about nature or climatic change.
We have and are still polluting the basic life sustaining elements like air and water. What’s the use of having millions of dollars in your bank account when you don’t have access to fresh air.
I’m not saying that economic development or technology is bad. What I’m trying to say is that whenever we utilize resources provided by nature, we should do it with full consciousness. When we’re aware and conscious, we know our true limits.
For example, we should practice water and electricity conservation. If you live in a western country, Just imagine a situation where there’s no electricity for 24-hours. Now compare that with the fact that 31 million homes in India operate without any electricity, according to this article by Forbes.
Many people die in India (and also in some other parts of the world) because of lack of essential resources and extreme temperature conditions.
Not only that, but even in our day to day life, we follow patterns of unconscious behaviors such as:
- Engaging in unproductive arguments, gossips and criticisms.
- Feeling no empathy or compassion for others.
- Abusing our own body through addictions.
- Engaging in corrupt practices.
- Running compulsively after material possessions in order to feel happy.
- Feeling of entitlement, and more.
The biggest symptom of third eye blockage is the feeling of separateness from the rest of the world. This separateness causes us to build strong identities, and that in turn creates divisions, that further gives rise to sectarianism, fundamentalism, and even extremism, in some cases.
Is the Third Eye Evil or Destructive?
Let me explain why this idea of third eye being evil has been propagated by various people and organizations.
The idea here is to make yourself superior by making other people believe they are dumb and lacking something. Fear is the perfect tool that helps in achieving this. For example, blind faith is used by some so called religious and spiritual leaders in order to manipulate those who are vulnerable.
These spiritual people insist that by performing certain rituals all your miseries and sorrows will be over. And they charge thousands of dollars for that. This is just a psychological tactic to manipulate you. They take advantage of your gullible nature. They warn you of dire consequences (like accident or death) if you don’t follow the process.
Similarly, there is framework built around economic development that more or less propagates the same idea, but in a more subtle manner. For example, health insurance companies will use fear to extract monthly premium from you.
These companies are hand in glove with mega large food chain businesses that will sell you junk food. The pharma industries make big business when you buy medicines after falling sick from eating junk food. It’s a complete nexus.
In the general, the whole corporate structure whether private owned or government is designed to keep your mind numb. It keeps your third eye closed and you constantly slog and hustle for the benefit of a few group of individuals. It keeps you trapped and working like a slave.
The idea of consumerism is also based on the same concept of fear (or FOMO as it is called nowadays). This is again a well-planned strategy to keep you confused and trapped. A lot of money is spend on advertisements and promotions in order keep you hooked.
An artificial need is created and you are literally forced to buy stuff that you really don’t need. There’s a constant pressure on you to keep up with the trends or else you’ll be looked down upon by the world.
You are also forced to consume meaningless content (social media, news, etc.) that numbs your mind and keeps you anxious and awake at night. It drains you and destroys your ability to think creatively.
That’s the reason why the idea of third eye being evil and destructive is promoted by some people (or groups) with vested interests. Because when awakened you will reject suppression and subjugation. You will be liberated and will not be taken advantage of anymore.
When awakened, you will prefer mediocrity over slavery; peace of mind over power and money; love and compassion over greed and manipulation; creative thinking over repetitive work; and much more. You will transcend beyond fear of survival and death.
In Hindu mythology, there are many popular stories where lord Shiva, one of the primary deities, also known as the destroyer or reformer of the world, uses his third eye to destroy the whole world. Just opening of his third eye causes catastrophic calamities and destruction.
Many people take that story literally and believe that there was male god at one point in time that caused destruction at will. In reality, the word ‘Shiva’ symbolizes the supreme knowledge, and what Shiva destroys is the ignorance, or the world of maya.
That’s why I say that if you’re deeply absorbed in maya, pain and suffering will always be a part of your life. Maya is very clever. It will throw a bait at you by seducing you with false illusions of happiness. Once you’re caught it will rear its ugly head.
Maya entices you with the promises of heaven and scares you with the fires of hell. And it uses the endless cycle of reward and punishment to keep you hooked onto it. Life after life we fall for the same traps and eventually we accept this to be our destiny.
It’s not difficult to realize that you’re caught in the web of falsehood. But escaping it is not easy for the illusion presented by maya is very enticing and mesmerizing on the surface.
Only when shakti unites with Shiva your consciousness rises to a point where you break free from the shackles of maya. For Shiva is beyond the concept of good or bad, and heaven or hell. Shiva even remains unaffected by the law of karma (or law of causation).
How to Awaken Your Third Eye?
Some of you are going to be disappointed and may not even like my answer, but in my experience this is the truth. Opening of the third eye is a privilege that is reserved for only a few. It’s for those who are willing to accept pain, suffering and struggle as the learning process.
It’s only for those who are genuine seekers. Most people are not ready to open their third eye and they will be terrified if they accidently did. Because it shows you the mirror. It gives you a glimpse into dimensions that are much varied than this physical reality.
Some people want to remain asleep because they operate out of fear. The path of Shiva is not an easy one and is only for the courageous. It’s for people who value freedom and liberation above all else.
It’s for those people who are not tempted by the golden handcuffs of maya and for whom self-realized is the highest attainment in life. Even a few lifetimes may short for self-realization.
However, if you’ve decided to tread this path then here’s the solution.
Third eye chakra can be awakened only through intense ‘sadhana’ (or deep meditation). When I say intense, I’m not referring to time but the intensity.
The only way to open the third eye and witness the supreme divinity is by crossing the barrier of your own mind i.e. your causal body. Crossing the mind will be the most challenging thing you’ve ever done because it’s very powerful. All the power of maya is in the mind.
Third eye meditation requires you to sit in a meditation posture, such as the easy pose, lotus pose or the cross-legged pose. Close your eyes and bring your awareness to the point between your eyebrows, also known as trikuti.
Do not use force and create a strain on your eyes. This is where most people make mistake and end up having bad headaches.
All you have to do is imagine yourself to be in that place. Also keep the focus of your eyes mild. Don’t concentrate hard.
Finally, imagine the energy rising up from the base of your body up to your third eye location. It will take time and practice to master this process so don’t be hard on yourself if you fail a couple of times.
In addition to practicing intense meditation, you also have to change your complete lifestyle. You’ll have to take care of you physical body by practicing yoga asanas (postures) and exercises. You’ll also have to practice breathing techniques to increase ‘prana shakti’ (life-force energy) within you.
Achieving stillness of the body will help you to achieve stillness of the mind. When the conscious mind is still you’ll have access to the vast creative knowledge buried deep within your subconscious mind. At every level, you’ll have very profound experiences.
Ultimately, you will reach a point where you attain what is known as ‘Nirvikalpa Samadhi’ (a deep state of consciousness where there is no ego or mind). The feeling of ‘I’ disappears at this level and you experience the unconditional peace and bliss of ‘oneness’.
At this stage, everything merges into the ‘one’. There will be no experience and the experiencer; no subject and the object; no wishes or desires; not even time and space – all there will be is the ‘pure being’ or the true self.
The one who when knows the true self has his third eye awakened.
Don’t try to force your way into third eye awakening. All you can do is consistently practice meditation or sadhana. Your third eye will awaken by itself when you’re ready.
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When your third eye awakens, the concept of duality dissolves and everything merges into the ‘one’. You rise beyond joy; sorrow; caste; creed; color; gender; race; religion; country; community; and all of the other concepts that creates division. You realize your true nature and become ‘Sat Chit Ananda’ (infinite consciousness and bliss)
Your third eye guides you towards the light of higher consciousness and you feel the unchanging and unconditional love. It brings about such a wisdom and profound knowledge that your complete outlook towards life changes in general.
With the power of this knowledge you don’t feel guilty about the problems going on in the world, but at the same time, you’re conscious about living your life in a way that benefits the whole world.
You cannot bring about a change in this world by creating fear, criticizing, mocking, shaming, or humiliating people. That is just for the satisfaction of your own ego. This has been going on for many ages and nothing much has ever really changed.
In the early ages, the struggle was more physical in nature, and now that struggle has transformed into more of psychological.
We are living in a day and age in which very few are holding onto a large chunk of the resources, while a large segment of society is struggling to get access to the basics. And we as a society, unconsciously promote this ideology. While it’s easy to blame others, we’re the ones who are actually responsible for our own conditions.
Nobody really ever changes on the inside with criticism. The only way to make a true change in the world is to raise your own consciousness and help others to do the same. When you raise your own vibrations – It’s a slow process but it’s the one that really works.
It’s time to wake up. It’s time to realize that we all are the all-powerful and omni-present ‘Shiva’. It is time to rise beyond the jiva, the limited mind-body complex that is born out of ignorance and error, and merge with supreme universal cosmic consciousness that is the final destination.