Similarities and differences between Therapy and Yoga/Non-Duality
Yoga can be practiced purely for wellbeing and to circulate energy, without spiritual growth being a specific objective. It can simply be a means to handling stress and channeling or calming emotions.
But if yoga is to be practiced in a spiritual sense, it can be meaningful to accompany it with therapeutic work, so that it isn’t used as a way of fleeing from a world which is perceived to be difficult. Therapy can help raise awareness of the mechanisms that engender discomfort or suffering.
From a therapeutic point of view, these patterns are linked to the psyche of individuals and their past. In Yoga, they make up what is called the ‘ego’, the body-mind to which individuals feel attached and with which they identify, forgetting that they are of a spiritual nature. Once there is awareness of the ego’s mechanisms and wounds, a certain distance and detachment from one’s ‘small conditioned self’ can take place.
Conversely, when wounds have been worked on in therapy and awareness of the conditioning has been raised, it is important to return inwards. Otherwise, being the spiritual beings that we are, we may continue to search for fulfillment outside of ourselves, which can bring about a feeling of loss and a return to suffering.
The yoga/non-duality approach and therapy are therefore two different paths that can be very complementary, depending on what is sought.