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Candles for Meditation: A Simple Yet Powerful Technique for Relaxation and Focus

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  • Post last modified:October 11, 2023


Candles have been used for meditation for centuries, and for good reason. Candle meditation is a simple yet powerful technique that involves focusing your attention on the flame of a candle for a certain length of time. It is also known as trataka, or yogic gazing, and has roots in ancient Indian yoga practices.

candles for meditation on yoga mat

When I first started practicing candle meditation, I was surprised at how quickly it helped me relax and clear my mind. The gentle flicker of the flame was mesmerizing, and I found myself becoming more and more absorbed in the experience. Over time, I noticed that my ability to focus improved, and I felt more centered and grounded in my daily life.

One of the things I love most about candle meditation is its simplicity. All you need is a quiet space, a comfortable seat, and a candle. You don’t need any special equipment or training to get started. And because it’s so easy to do, it’s a great practice for beginners who are new to meditation.

Benefits of Candle Meditation

Candle meditation is a simple yet powerful technique that can have numerous benefits for your mental and physical health. Here are some of the benefits of candle meditation:

Lighted Candle Beside a Tibetan Singing Bowl and Incense Stick on White Linen

Increased cognitive performance and focus: According to Nisha Saini, a board-certified holistic health practitioner, candle meditation can help improve focus and cognitive performance. This is because the practice requires you to concentrate on a single object, which can help train your mind to stay focused on tasks for longer periods.

Improved memory and spatial attention: A 2018 research article suggests that candle gazing meditation can help improve memory and spatial attention. This is because the practice requires you to use your visual senses in a unique way, which can help improve your brain’s ability to process visual information.

Improved mental health: Meditation has long been used as a tool for stress relief and relaxation. Candle meditation is no exception. By focusing on the gentle flicker of the flame, you can help calm your mind and reduce feelings of anxiety and stress.

Improved sleep quality: According to Saini, candle meditation can also help improve sleep quality. This is because the practice can help calm your mind and reduce feelings of restlessness before bed.

Improved eye health: Contrary to popular belief, staring at a candle flame for short periods is not harmful to your eyes. In fact, some experts suggest that it can even help improve eye health by exercising the muscles in your eyes.

How to Use Candles for Meditation

Here are some tips on how to use candles for meditation:

Choose the right candle: When selecting a candle for meditation, choose one that is made from natural or non-toxic substances such as beeswax or soy wax. You can also choose candles with scents that promote relaxation such as lavender, vanilla, pine, peppermint, cinnamon, or jasmine.

soy wax candle

Create a relaxing environment: Find a quiet room where you won’t be disturbed for the duration of the session. Dim the lights and remove any distractions from the room. You can also play some soft music or use aromatherapy to create a calming atmosphere.

Position the candle: Place the candle at eye level and approximately 20 inches away from you 32. This will help prevent eye strain and allow you to focus on the flame.

Set your intention: Take a few deep breaths and settle into your intention before starting the meditation session 3. You can also set a timer for 1 minute to start and gradually increase the time as you become more comfortable with the practice.

Focus on the flame: Gaze at the flame of the candle and try to maintain your focus on it. If your mind starts to wander, gently bring it back to the flame.

Types of Candles for Meditation

There are many types of candles that are suitable for meditation. Here are some of the most popular ones:

Scented candles: Scented candles can help create a relaxing atmosphere and promote feelings of calmness and tranquility. Some popular scents for meditation include lavender, vanilla, pine, peppermint, cinnamon, or jasmine.

Healing crystal candles: Healing crystal candles are infused with crystals that are believed to have healing properties. These candles can help promote spiritual connectedness and enhance the meditative experience.

Sage candles: Sage candles are made from sage essential oil and are used for cleansing and purification. Burning sage is believed to help clear negative energy from a space and promote feelings of positivity and clarity.

Beeswax candles: Beeswax candles are made from natural beeswax and have a subtle honey scent. They are non-toxic and burn cleanly, making them a great choice for those who are sensitive to synthetic fragrances.

Tea light candles: Tea light candles are small, unscented candles that can be used to create a relaxing atmosphere during meditation. They are also inexpensive and widely available.