Fixed gaze trance work is apparently practiced in some Western esoteric groups.
The problem with the way certain groups are set up is that beginning students are not told the complete story about what will be studied and the actual nature of the group doctrine. The alibi is often that the new students are at too low a level of consciousness to understand the information. So they may not be told beforehand that trance and cultivation of siddhis are actually part of the curriculum, which means that students cannot make an informed decision whether they wish to get involved with anything that involves trancework.
1) Long, very informative article here. The author also mentions problems that arise when covens and lodges fail to screen out unethical persons who seek to learn these techniques.
'I do not mean to imply that yoga techniques are not important in magick, or that yoga and magical hypnosis are not interrelated. One of the first techniques the magical student has to learn is the practice of "tratakam", the "fixed gaze". This is a hypnotic facet of yoga meditation wherein the student develops the ability to stare at a fixed point, or symbol, for long periods of time without blinking or letting the eyes change focus. This ability is absolutely essential to future Almadel and Goetia operations.
'A noted anthropologist once wrote that shamans could be recognized by their agitated manner and shifty glance. If he applied this to magicians, he could not have been more wrong. A magician looks right through you and never blinks. No one can stare him down except another magician.' (unquote)
2) Rom Landau reported an incident in which Gurdjeiff might have used siddhis. This is reported both in 'The Harmonious Circle' by James Webb and 'Holy Madness' by Georg Feurstein.
According to Landau, he was in a restaurant with a woman friend, and they saw Gurdjieff at a nearby table. Gurdjieff looked at them, perhaps sensed their disapproval. Gurdjieff began breathing heavily, and suddenly Landau's friend went pale and gave a gasping shudder.
She told Landau later that she'd felt penetrated 'In her sexual center' and urged him to be on his guard if he considered studying with Gurdjieff.