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Yoga Psychotherapy, Qu’est Que C’est? Are We Getting All Religiony Again?

in YD News

It’s a rather dismal and gloomy day here in NYC, which we admit does have us feeling a bit somber and detached. While days like this can offer a welcomed respite from the steady stream of madness, sometimes they can make you feel more secluded and alone than a big city like this does normally. And so our mind wandered to the yog, as it often does whether we want it to or not, and we got to thinking about the intention of yoga, the “union” to manifest connectedness and oneness.

And then we saw this article about yoga integration in the field of Psychotherapy. It’s an enlightening piece about how some people use yoga to overcome rough patches of grief or depression and how social workers are beginning to use yoga methods, especially breathing techniques, in a professional setting to elevate patients from the depths of loneliness and despondency – which is what often gets us down, the feeling that we are alone.

We’ve mentioned how medical practitioners, and fashion designers, are seeing the positive effects of yoga in patients and are willing to take initiatives to explore further. Although there can be a mental/emotional element, that takes a beneficial backseat to the physical aspect of a yoga practice, which is to say there’s less of the hippie new-agey stigma nowadays and actual science involved (this is a good thing). However, when you get into the subject of the mind, and yoga philosophy seeps into the Psychotherapy mix, it raises the question once again of yoga “beliefs” and threatens to discount the work that has been done to get past the notion that yoga influences, or is influenced by, religion. There is certainly a fine and blurred line and we hope that esoteric talk doesn’t put people off. Then again, we could be totally paranoid and our gray matter consumed by the grayness outside our window.

Off the Couch and Onto the Mat [CommonGroundMag]

3 comments… add one
  • Yoga (Application) which was based on the control of the body physically and implied that a perfect control over the body and the senses led to knowledge of the ultimate reality. A detailed anatomical knowledge of the human body was necessary to the advancement of yoga and therefore those practising yoga had to keep in touch with medical knowledge. (Romila Thapar, A History of India, volume one).

    I suggest : Mind and brain are two distinct things. Brain is anatomical entity whereas mind is functional entity. Mind can be defined as the function of autonomic nervous system (ANS). It is claimed that mind can be brought under conscious control through the practice of meditation. But how? ANS is largely under hypothalamic control which is situated very close to optic chiasma (sixth chakra or ajna chakra). Protracted practice of concentration to meditate at this region brings functions of ANS say mind under one’s conscious control.

    ANS is further divided into parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS) and sympathetic nervous system (SNS). On the basis of these facts I have discovered a mathematical relationship for spiritual quotient (S.Q.). Spiritual Quotient can be expressed mathematically as the ratio of Parasympathetic dominance to Sympathetic dominance. PSNS dominates during meditative calm and SNS dominates during stress. In this formula we assign numerical values to the physiological parameters activated or suppressed during autonomic mobilization and put in the formula to describe the state of mind of an individual and also infer his/her level of consciousness.

    Meditation is the art of looking within and science of doing nothing. We don’t use anything in meditation. We just try to concentrate to meditate at some point in human anatomy known as ‘chakra’ in Indian System of Yoga. The current of mind is flowing outward through the senses and unconsciously. The mind comes at rest gradually through regular practice of meditation. Then comes self realization and enlightenment. Protracted practice of meditation under qualified guidance will help to manage all sort of psychological problems.

    Emotional Quotient can also be expressed mathematically as the product of I.Q. and Wisdom Factor. E.Q. stands for Emotional Quotient. An intelligent person may not be wise. But a wise man will always be intelligent. An intelligent person having certain level of positive emotions can be said as wise. An intelligent person lacking wisdom will turn autocrat. A wise man will always be a democrat who respects others existence.

    Some may raise doubt that how could be the Wisdom quantified? The answer is simple -if Mental Age of I.Q. can be quantified then Wisdom can also be quantified, of course, comparatively with more efforts. Wilhelm Stern had given the formula of I.Q.. It is, Mental Age/ Chronological Age x 100. Spiritual Quotient (S.Q.) leverages both E.Q. and I.Q.

    Radha Soami Faith is a branch of Religion of Saints like Kabir, Nanak, Paltu, and others. Soamiji Maharaj is the founder of this Faith. You may call It like New Wine in Old Bottle.

    Maslow has given Hierarchy of Needs. At the top of it is need for self-actualization or self-realization.

    In our society we should learn To Live and Let Live and help to satisfy others need. When the lower order needs, physiological and sociological both, are satisfied then only a person think to satisfy need for self-realization in true sense. Else he/she may spend all his/her life to satisfy at the most the need for self-expression instead of self-realization.

    It is, therefore, the duty of every responsible person of our society to give serious thought over it.

    For the satisfaction of need for self-realization i.e. establishment of harmony of individual consciousness with that of universal consciousness we need following three things:

    1. Mater or Guru (A Self-Realized Soul)
    2. Secret of Levels of Universal Consciousness
    3. Method for traversing the path.

    Anirudh Kumar Satsangi

  • Meditation as Psychoanalytic Technique

    Psychoanalysis is primarily a method of psychotherapy developed by Sigmund Freud. According to psychoanalytic theory, anxiety is due to the presence in us all of certain threatening sexual or aggressive urges, wishes or motives springing from the id. These urges come into conflict with the realistic barriers imposed by the ego and the taboos of society incorporated in the superego. We repress the urges and conflicts – hide them from conscious awareness in the unconscious mind. We cannot consciously think about or verbalize a repressed desire. But the urge is still there in the unconscious mind, driving for expression though always in conflict with the ego and superego. We are afraid to express the id impulses. This fear is called anxiety. Various normal and abnormal defense mechanism develop in us to reduce anxiety. Abnormal neurotic behaviours occur when the defenses distort reality to such a degree that an individual’s ability to function is impaired.

    The aim of psychoanalytic therapy is to lessen anxiety and the need for exaggerated defense mechanisms through self-understanding and knowledge of the sources of anxiety. Psychoanalysis emphasizes free association, the phenomenon of transference, and the development of insight. Psychoanalysis helps a person understand himself better. The goal of psychoanalysis is for patients to acquire self-understanding and knowledge of the sources of anxiety.

    We will now see how practice of meditation works effectively as psychoanalytic technique. During meditation the mind is at first apt to wander. But let any desire whatever arise in the mind, we must sit calmly and watch what sort of ideas are coming. By continuing to watch in that way the mind becomes calm, and there are no more thought waves in it. Those things that we have previously thought deeply have stored into unconscious mind and therefore these come up at the surface of conscious mind during meditation. This is sort of catharsis. We may call it ‘auto-catharsis’ or ‘catharsis within’. Meditation provides us insight, self-understanding and increases our will power. Meditaters are fearless.

    Anirudh Kumar Satsangi

  • a.k.satsangi

    Deepak Chopra has given a formula of spiritual quotient in terms of Deed (D) and Ego (E). According to Deepak Chopra S.Q.=D/E. According to him if E is ‘zero’ the S.Q. will be infinite. This appears to be very fascinating but it is highly abstract which can not be measured experimentally accurately and precisely. However, this formula has immense value to understand S.Q.
    I have also discovered a mathematical relationship for S.Q about eight years back in 2001. I have used physiological parameters which can be measured accurately and precisely and can be tested and verified experimentally. According to this formula S.Q. can be expressed as the ratio of parasympathetic dominance (P.D.) to sympathetic dominance (S.D.). Parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS) and sympathetic nervous system (SNS) are the two parts of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) which is largely under hypothalamic control. Hypothalamus is situated very close to the Sixth Chakra. During practice of meditation at Sixth Chakra these centres are galvanised which has very positive effect on practitioners spiritual, emotional, psychological and physiscal well being

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