Please refer to previous blog article TEN STEPS TO QUIET THE BRAIN: POSITIONING THE EYE IN ASANA, PRANAYAMA, PRATYAHARA for instructions about how to enter state of relaxation.

Relaxed eyes = a relaxed brain.  There is no tension.  No waste of energy.

  • Lengthen the upper eyelid skin gently from the brown to the eyelashes.  Do not tighten the upper eyelids or make them loose when you relax.  The eyelids are like flower petals hugging the eyelid ever so gently.
  • If the eyes are squeezed too tightly shut or held too widely open, then there is tension.  When your eyes are open too wide, for example, you will not be able to enter the interior of the yoga asana (i.e. let the pose do you instead of you do the pose). In pranayama, when your eyes are tensely closed,  you will not be able to achieve the blissful silence.  In meditation, if eyes are tense you will see colors and patterns that distract you.
  • As Senior Iyengar teacher Dassa Oppenheimer says: “Only when the eyes are in the correct position can the body relax into silence while in an asana.”  Eyes, like limbs and shoulders have their correct spot. Yoga practitioners go from gross body to subtle body through the eyes.
  • Eyes control the fluctuation of the brain. “What happens when the eyes are in the proper position?”  The answer:  “Not a thought occurs in the brain.”
  • Keep your eyeballs steady Do not flicker.  When doing pranayama, try not to allow your pupillae to move as you breath.  Movement causes unnecessary brain activity. In pranayama, eyes tend to unconsciously turn upwards on the inhale, so you may have to pay attention so that eyes do not lift.


WHAT IS THE MIND?  Subjective knowledge, or intellect.  in Sanskrit known as buddhi, the instrument of knowledge, discernment, and decision. In buddhi we use our intuition.

WHAT IS THE BRAIN? Where we acquire objective knowledge, any knowledge whether true or false in science, learning, scholarship, philosophy. In Sanskrit the brain is vidya. In vidya we make to-do lists.