Is yoga itself a treatment method?

December 15, 2019 |

Read Time: 3 minutes

Yoga is a tool for spiritual evolution.  Yoga is a tool for improving and attaining physical fitness. Yoga is a tool for breath control. Yoga is a tool to calm the mind. Yoga is a tool of therapy. Yoga means different things for different people. Yoga is all this and much more.

Yoga is a tool for healing and therapy. Yoga is a humanistic and individualistic method of treatment which gives absolute importance to a person’s physical, mental and emotional state in the present and seeks to work on this present reality at various levels so that the person feels better over a period of time.

Our human body is made up of the five elements which make up the universe around us. These five elements are space, air, fire, water and earth. We all are but a representation of the cosmos. We are in a state of good health when we are in tune with the cosmos and the five elements within us are in a state of balance. There is a continuous change happening due to our lifestyle, eating habits, activities, emotions and our response to the changes happening around us. All these aspects result in the prana or life energy getting dissipated as the flow of this energy is obstructed. This obstruction or blockage manifests in the form of diseases and ailments over time.

Yoga seeks to bring and maintain a state of balance within us and with the universe around us. Yoga seeks to do this by removing the impurities so that the obstacles or hurdles in the path of flow of life energy are eliminated paving the way for the energy to converge within the body.

Yoga asana practice focuses on opening the blockages at the physical and mental level. Asana practice helps in improving one’s flexibility and build strength over a period of time so that the ailments at the physical level are reduced. The breath-based asana practice seeks to activate the fire within us and also helps in the mind to get focused. Pranayama works on the breath and seeks to use the breath to kindle the fire within us towards the toxins and impurities in us and burn them. The yama and niyama govern our behaviour towards others and our own selves and works at elimination negative emotions in us paving the way for a peaceful state of mind and body. The pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi limbs of yoga seek to calm the mind, increase the focus and attention and clarity in our thought process.

Yoga as a method of therapy or treatment is highly individualistic. Each individual is unique and different from others and treatment methods vary from person to person as the focus is on the individual and the disease is secondary to the person.

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Ms. Mimi Partha Sarathy

Founder, Managing Trustee and Sr. Yoga Teacher Sri Krishna Wellness Yoga Centre

Bengaluru, Karnataka, India