"I’m going to demonstrate a special way of walking in the darkness; the gait of power. My trunk is slightly bent forward, but my spine is straight. My knees are also slightly bent. Raise your knees almost to your chest every time you take a step.
The gait of power is for running at night, and it is completely safe. This is the night! And it is power!"
Carlos Castaneda in the Journey to Ixtlan
"The Gait of Power" originally referred to as "La Marcha De Poder" in the original language Castaneda wrote his books.
At night the world is different and the ability to run in darkness is totally foreign to the brain and the "dormant" senses of a human being. Even in a place that is totally known and mapped out to the mind, the challenge is real. The key to this "gait" or "march" is to let your personal power flow into the direction of your focus, abandon yourself and trust fully in the power that you have within. Not having the eyes to follow, you are required to forget your mind, its troubles, and to finally join forces with the surrounding environment you are in. Once this power is put in motion you are able to put in place an intent for a new perception of life ... and from then on, you would have stopped the world, to be free. Simple, in a way..
Castaneda was taught this walk in a way to make his movements totally foreign to any of his usual senses, making it easier to let go of the mind. Abandoning the mind and creating that sense of trust in your own power. The "Don't worry be Happy" kind of thing. Darkness has also an advantage over daylight, there are certain forms, guardians, perceptions, entities .. call them what you want, around us during our every day lives. Simply because the world is familiar to us, and that which is familiar goes easily un-noticed. In the darkness, everything can be considered strange and it is harder to leave things go un-noticed. With our senses boosted we get to see more of these forms and connect more to the world surrounding us.
Think of yourself when you are sound asleep, in that moment you are gathering energy, although not in a conscious manner. The gait of power is replicating that same energetic intake during a time that you are fully conscious and in full control. It is a way where one can fully rest.
A good example would be walking. Walking the gait of power in darkness is one way to go about it. One can also choose a totally new place (not necessarily in the dark). When you walk for hours in a place which is not familiar to you, your body is amazed with new sceneries, smells, air, textures and more. The energy moves down from your mind to your body's lower chakras in a similar way to that of being in darkness. Your focus is directed towards your experience, you are a part of the life around you and not apart of it anymore. Seeing it through this different lens makes the Gait of Power more accessible and available in more situations of our lives.
Then we roll in; "Intent: ..
“Intent is not a thought, or an object, or a wish. Intent is what can make a man succeed when his thoughts tell him that he is defeated. It operates in spite of the warrior's indulgence. Intent is what makes him invulnerable. Intent is what sends a shaman through a wall, through space, to infinity.”
After having stored the energy and power we can then focus some of it on an intent. Intent is like planting a seed. It's what our essence truly believes in. When that moment of silence from any internal dialogue is reached one can then choose a power object - a gate, a guardian, a special tree. Go through it, step on it, look at it and make your intent with a fully open heart and a quiet mind.
Being led by the power that is inside of us can be something that can be practiced more often which can lead to more energy being stored within ourselves.
Power has the peculiarity of being unnoticeable when it is being stored. When your body is given a fright, you are shaken off, the mind control drops.
"The Gait of Power" is a "Not Doing" in itself, it is doing what you do not know how to do.
This is the essence of the teaching; to not do, this is the way to store personal power.
The body likes things like this. You can stop the world using this technique. Once you have succeeded, you must work as if nothing has happened to you and don't mention or even be concerned with any of the events you have experienced.