Yoga therapy or yogic medicinal way is a treatment method for expressed and dormant diseases by means of yogic activities through certain physical, mental or both exercises. Treatment of every disease is based on certain principles, as:
- Providing external/internal impetus to body for production of certain disease prevention/inhibition reactions inside our body,
- Providing external supply of chemicals which body lacks, or
- Removal of unwanted elements from the body.
On first look yoga may seem to be a medicinal way based on the first principle, i.e. providing external/internal impetus to our body for production of certain disease prevention/inhibition reactions inside our body. But the specialised form of yogic therapy involves treatment using all major principles of the medicinal system.
WHAT IS YOGA?
Word Yoga is derived from the Sanskrit root ‘yuj’ which means ‘to join’ or ‘unite’. Yoga involves a combination of physical and spiritual methods for development of higher consciousness, signifying the union between an individual soul (jivatma) with his physical being and the universal soul (parmatma).
Yoga as a mode of medicinal way has been practised in India from very ancient times. Based on ancient texts, Yoga was started by Shiva (who became the 1st Adi yogi) through his observations and practices from nature and his body in the Himalayas. Later it was spread by his 7 disciples across the globe. What we see today is the codified version of yoga by “Patanjali” as “Yoga Sutras.”
YOGA AND HUMAN
Human evolution occurs in 3 different planes, as physical, mental and spiritual. Yoga helps not just in the physical plane by attaining perfect health, but it also helps in maintenance of harmony among all planes and achieving optimum functioning on all three levels through complete self-control. Yoga is a tool to reduce oneself to his/her body and get the sense of body measures and proportion, to bring resonance and harmony in the inner and outer world.
YOGA FOR TREATMENT: Physical Basis of Yoga
Ideally, yoga is a philosophical and spiritual practice for removal of life problems or “Chitta Vrtti”, but it also helps in getting rid of diseases by strengthening the organs and organ systems in the body, establishing inner and outer balance along with the spiritual and mental development. Yoga helps in balancing the Panchamahbuthas (5 basic elements of life as- Earth, Air, Water, Fire and Sky), on which every life form exists.
Yogic treatment of individual diseases is based on certain yogic kriyas such as asanas and pranayama forming the physical basis of yoga. Yogic kriyas and asanas help in improved circulation of fluids. Yoga also helps in energising and stimulating the major endocrine glands of the body. Yoga is a very effective disease prevention system and holds a very high potential towards solving health issues. Various elements of Yoga, their components, benefits and other relevant things of yoga are described step by step in the succeeding sections.
General Guidelines for Yoga:
- The practice of yogic asanas should be ideally done in early morning or after 3-4 hours of having food.
- Long duration practices should be done only after mastering the techniques from a competent teacher.
- Asanas should be performed at a leisurely slow-motion pace, maintaining poise and balance.
- Always start with Dhyana and then some basic movements of hand, legs, and neck before starting yogic asanas. It will help in providing the right kind of mental and physical impetus to the body.
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