Updated: Jun 28, 2022
"Where our eyes go, our attention follows". Let's talk about drishti and balance.
The Sanskrit word drishti is commonly translated as “view,” “gaze,” or “point of focus.” It is a single still point to fix your eyes or focus. The ancient yogis discovered that where our eyes are directed our attention naturally follows, and that the quality of our gazing is directly reflected in the quality of our mental thoughts.
When we fix our gaze, it lessens all other distractions in the environment.
There are nine basic drishtis:
Nasagrai Drishti, gazing at the tip of the nose. Upward-Facing Dog, Chaturanga, and standing forward fold
Angusta Ma Dyai Drishti, gazing at the middle of the thumbs. Warrior I and Chair
Pahayoragrai Drishti, gazing at the toes. Hand to Toe pose and most seated forward bends
Nabi Chakra Drishti, gazing at the navel. Downward Facing Dog
Hastagrai Drishti, gazing at the hands. Triangle and Warrior II
Parsva Drishti (left), gazing toward the left side. seated spinal twists
Parsva Drishti (right), gazing toward the right side. twists
Urdhva Drishti, gazing upwards. Reverse Warrior, Half-Moon
Naitrayohmadya or Broomadhya Drishti, gazing at the third eye (ajna chakra). Fish and Lion's Breath
How do I work on focusing my drishti?
Find a still point of focus, whether it be a body part (internal or external) or a still object in the room or practice space. Don't strain the eyes, but gently focus your attention and let the eyes remain soft and focused. Play with it a little.... See what happens when your gaze switches directions or try closing your eyes.