Should I Focus on the Breath or Spiritual Eye in Meditation?


During Hong Sau, at one point I do feel the breath at the top of the nasal cavity or around the Spiritual Eye. I then feel pressure there and I start to concentrate simultaneously on the breath and the Spiritual Eye, which in the lessons is termed "self defeating". What should I do then; should I stop Hong Sau and focus on the Spiritual Eye, or try removing my mind from the Spiritual Eye and continue focussing on the breath? Thank you.

—Kailash, India


Dear Kailash,

In the text, Art and Science of Raja Yoga, Swami Kriyananda advises us that if there is a conflict, during the practice of Hong Sau, between the focus on the spiritual eye AND on watching the breath, that we should make watching the breath our primary focus.

As you relax and become increasingly calm, the apparent tension between these will begin to lessen and, in time and with practice disappear entirely.

In Hong Sau, as you know, we are taught to follow the flow of breath from its entrance into the nose, through the middle part and all the way to top, just below the spiritual eye.

Continue to make this your priority. When you find that you attention is drawn and remains at the top of the nose, then you will find, quite likely, that the two points converge naturally.

Another approach is to alternate your primary focus between the spiritual eye and the flow of breath rising and falling. (When I use the term “alternate” I don’t mean with each breath! I mean a few minutes at a time in each.)

I would however only say that start with the flow of breath (bottom, middle, top and reverse) and only experiment with periods of focusing at the spiritual eye when you are very calm and peaceful.


Joy and blessings to you and upon your practice,

Nayaswami Hriman