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Open eye meditation: why should you do it and how

By Marilou LeBel-Dupuis – on in Life
You thought meditation could only be done with closed eyes?

When we think about someone meditating, we almost all imagine the same thing. We imagine someone sitting, their eyes closed, peaceful. Yet we can also meditate with our eyes open and be equally peaceful. You probably even practice open eye meditation already without knowing it. Ever felt so calm after walking in the forest? After driving on an empty road? After running? It’s because these activities can be meditative.

Why practice open eye meditation?

Many meditation lovers prefer this approach to meditation with closed eyes. For some, open eye meditation allows us to remain more attentive and vigilant. Indeed, it’s quite impossible to fall asleep while meditating this way. This practice incorporates meditation into daily life naturally. It is easier that way to keep our mindfulness because, in the end, we don’t cut ourselves from our surroundings by closing our eyes.

Techniques

Like all meditative practices, there are many ways to do open eye meditation. Don’t be scared to try different things and to diversify your practice.

Walking

We mentioned it earlier, but walking can be meditative. Try focusing on your breathing and/or on the impacts your feet have every time they hit the ground. Walking in nature can also do the trick.

Doing breathing exercises

Since meditating and breathing go together, doing breathing exercises can also be considered as open eye meditation.

Choosing an object to focus on

Chandelle
yogawithanntoni | Instagram

This could be an object from your surroundings or an object you carry with you for that purpose—something that isn’t charged emotionally. Stare at this object and focus on your breathing. This object can also be moving. For instance, looking at a candle flame is a classic open eye meditation.

Looking down

Maybe focusing on an object is too difficult. If it’s the case, focus on your feet or the floor. That way, your eyes will be half-closed, which could facilitate the meditation for you. You would have less visual stimulations for sure.

Using an app

Of course, there is an app to help you meditate with open eyes—there is an app for everything. Try MindFi, which is super easy to use. Give it a try and you’ll be convinced.

 

Finally, a piece of good advice when you start is to meditate for a set time. You can start with one, two or five minutes. Then, gradually increase your time. Who knows, you might end up open eye meditating for quite some time after a while!


Cover photo: Neal E. Johnson | Unsplash

 

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Marilou LeBel-Dupuis

Marilou is a B.Ed. graduate who likes to do a lot of things, except teaching in Quebec. Her friends, writing, travelling and blueberry Red Bull make her happy.