Ask a yoga teacher #1: My third eye hurts

Hey Daniel

I just (legitimately) meditated for the first time today. For a while–months, maybe longer–I don’t remember exactly when that I began to notice a slight pressure in the area of the location of the third eye chakra! so I wound up looking into the 7 chakras. Now I’ve been noticing an increase or I should say becoming more intuitively aware and having empath episodes more often. I just was curious to see what you thought of these things.

thanks for reading


Congratulations on making meditation a part of your life. When we meditate, we’re doing ourselves and the world a big favor.

I think it is very much human nature to want the unexplainable  explained. I think it is also very much a thing of the west to ask, “can you give me a list of the top ten side effects and experiences that will be coming my way now that I am here?” Which is very helpful in getting us to miss the point of being here. Now.

If you haven’t guessed by now I’m going to take a lot of time telling you I don’t know what it means for you.

Existence is a very personal experience. Our attempts at mediation and moving beyond the physical world will be difficult to explain. I have had other people mention the pressure on the third eye during meditation. When I was meditating under the supervision of Nagaraja S. Pande in Mysore, India, I experienced that same sensation. It was like a finger trying to push it’s way out of my skull. I mentioned this to N.S. Pande and he gave me no explanation. I should make it clear after this experience I still consider my self “Still not Enlightened” and didn’t feel much change in my day to day life besides the general calming from the meditation itself. My friend experienced the same thing and told the head of her Yoga teacher training group and her fellow students, who all told her with great joy that she had activated her third eye. (I think developing the third eye is a better way to describe it than opening or activating the third eye.) I remember Harjiwan telling me that through meditation and Kundalini yoga, the opening of the third eye will become physical. The skull will actually open in that spot.


trepanation, trephination


Native Americans had skull opening rituals. People have used power tools to create these openings in modern times. I don’t advise this. Meditation and yoga sound more appealing. But an extra hole in the head seems to give people a sense of euphoria. Is it the extra oxygen now reaching the brain that is now producing these effects? That might explain the power of Pranayama.

Some people have said you may be experiencing the opening of some old, blocked-up energy and not the opening of the third eye itself… just a clearing out of the third eye energy path.  It’s so subjective.

The chakra in the third eye is an interesting place for us to be suddenly having some action. It is said that most of us are living in our first and second chakras and that by moving our kundalini energy up the spine, we activate each chakra until we reach the top (enlightenment?). But if we are reaching our third eye in meditation, how did our kundalini energy jump over the other chakra areas to reach the 6th chakra (called Ajna)? Can we just jump around from chakra to chakra? AND if we already reached the other 5 chakras wouldn’t we know?

Cymry Mongan of Color my Chakras had this to say:

The Third Eye can only be properly activated when the lower five chakras are balanced and aligned.  If the Third Eye is not linked with the other chakras, we may become obsessed with the search for altered states of consciousness and psychic powers to satisfy our ego. This extinguishes our inner light, moving us further away from Enlightenment.

As far as becoming more intuitive through activation of the third eye/6th chakra, I don’t think it exactly relates to the third eye pressure but is  more an artifact of sitting in meditation daily.  In my opinion our intuition is 100% on, 24/7, but most of us are not listening or have not learned to listen. Which is the point of meditation. Learning to listen. Heightened intuition would be a good sign that your meditation practice is on the right path.

With meditation, we are trying to unlearn and clear the way so we can receive the information that is already available… information we can’t hear because we are already full of so much information. Meditation is not about trying to learn or acquire more. Meditation is a vehicle on a trip to the no mind, or the know mind.

Thanks for your question, Keith. Sorry I don’t have an answer. 😉

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Also from Cymry Mongan of Color my Chakras

The 3rd Eye Chakra is the sixth in the 7-Chakra system.  It is located between and just above the eyes. The Sanskrit word for this sixth chakra is “Anja,” meaning ‘command.’  Working with this chakra gives us a greater spiritual command of our lives.  The color is INDIGO, and the element is Light.  Physically, it is connected with the pituitary and pineal glands, eyes, ears, and nose.  It relates to vision, intuition, intellect, inner wisdom, perception, and mental clarity.


Three Monkeys and a Secret

Joe went to the bank. When he got there, he couldn’t help but notice there were three monkeys with a screwdriver trying to break into the bank manager’s desk. The bank manager had just been given a large loaf of banana bread and the monkeys had smelled it as they swung by the bank. The monkeys had been watching a second-hand copy of the DVD The Secret and were spending a lot of their time trying to manifest things… like banana bread. An older woman named Charlotte, an ex-B-movie star who was long past her prime, had baked the banana bread for the middle-aged bank manager. She was trying to send him a message and she thought the banana part of the banana bread might have Freudian overtones.

The bank manager caught the monkeys trying to break into his desk. He had grown interested in the idea the banana bread implied, but not really the bread itself. He called security and an overweight man with a gun approached the monkeys that now brandished the screwdriver more as a weapon. You see, all the watching of the second-hand copy of The Secret had given these three monkeys a sense of entitlement. The monkey on the left who was not holding a screwdriver said to the guard, now holding his gun, “Isn’t there enough for everyone in this world?” The guard looked mostly confused because he himself did not speak English well, and the monkeys’ English was more like pig-Latin.

All three of the monkeys were growing upset and this made them even more upset, because they knew that if they had negative thoughts and emotions, this would make manifesting anything good nearly impossible and then all they would be left with would be their desire… which all three knew was the root of all suffering.

The monkey on the right (also not the one holding the screwdriver) jumped up on the bank manager’s desk as Joe looked on. The security guard jumped back and made the sign of the cross (it’s a Catholic thing). The monkey who jumped up on the desk pulled down his board shorts and began peeing on the bank manager’s desk while he sang “Me So Horny” by 2 Live Crew. All three monkeys began laughing and ran out the door and down the street. One was still holding the screwdriver as he ran.

Joe was very angry by the time he got back to his apartment and his anger, which he was unable to control, was upsetting him even more because he, too, had watched The Secret and knew that his bad mood was probably manifesting more of the same and he felt trapped. If only that stupid cop hadn’t kept asking him, “Are you sure the monkeys said they had been watching The Secret?” Joe had finally said, “I told you three times already, yes, those fucking criminal monkeys said they had been watching The Secret.” The cop got pissed when Joe raised his voice and started getting passive-aggressive with Joe. Joe shut down a little inside as a defense mechanism.

Joe immediately took his copy of The Secret off his shelf and took it to the biggest, non-corporate music and book store in his town. This non-corporate music and book store was so big, it put all of the other non-corporate music and book stores out of business a few years ago. Anyway, Joe walked in with his copy of The Secret and the girl behind the counter rolled her eyes, which embarrassed Joe a little. He felt judged. Maybe he wasn’t hip enough to sell his copy of The Secret here.

The girl behind the counter said, “You’re too late. We have had people bringing that DVD in for the last year in truck-fulls and I just got the last copy of The Secret we will ever need. I gave a monkey in board shorts a copy of The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra in exchange for the DVD.” Then she said, in a whisper, “I would not have made the trade, but the monkey looked a little upset and he had a screwdriver in his hand.”