Studies about children claiming past-life memories was conducted in Sri Lanka, India, Lebanon and the USA, by Erlendur Haraldsson, Antonia Mills, and Jim B. Tucker / F. Don Nidiffer, between 1995 and 2014. The researches included psychological tests to the children, their mothers and teachers who knew them well. Many subjects experience positive benefits from their memories.
A new therapy was developed to address Chronic Headache Pain. The Mindful-Based-Dance Movement Therapy (MBDMT) involves multiple mechanisms like mindfullness skills, body awareness, relaxation/releasing, Distancing and staying with discomfort, meaning making, self-regulation, acceptance and integration, creativity.
The study concluded that MBDMT is feasible and promising for chronic pain patients.
COVID-19 Pandemic is affecting the psychological health of the people. A worldwide survey was conducted over 243 studies, to assess the benefit of the practice of yoga (Hatha yoga, mindfullness meditation, sahaj yoga, and others) on the mental health parameters. It indicates moderate to positive effects of yoga on mental health, and provides recommendations. In India the Ministry of Public Health publishes guidelines to boost immunity during COVID-19 pandemic, recommending practicing daily Yoga for 30 minutes.
A team of researchers has developed a methodology to experiment two-way communication with dreamers during their sleep. They used EEG (electroencephalography) and facial or ocular response to correlate with stimuli. Dreamers were able to hear simple arithmetic questions and to provide correct answers via a pre-established protocol (ocular or facial movements). Once awaken, the experimenters were able to confirm they received the questions and transmit the answers, with some distortion in some cases. This experiment confirm the sleep learning phenomenon and open the door to a better understanding of the dream states.
Sri Aurobindo Integral Yoga brings a new paradigm to “articulate a spiritually-informed approach to psychology and psychiatry”. This has now find its way and is becoming part of the mainstream of clinical practices. Integrative medicine, mindfullness-based stress reduction is now accepted and meditation has become a remedy for medical and mental health problems. This article gives an overview of Sri Aurobindo Integral Yoga Psychology, with its relevance to clinical practice.
Scientific Materialism paradigm is becoming more and more unbearable, and post-materialistic science is emerging. In a paper published in the International Journal of Transpersonal Studies, the author is debating the role of Transpersonal Psychology as a contributor to cultural transformation. The metaphysics of Science, Materialism, and Post-Materialism are analyzed and an evaluation of the contribution of Transpersonal Psychology is proposed.
Mindfullness-Based-Cognitive-Therapy (MBCT) are now well developed and well accepted in the medical communities. It has demonstrated its efficiency in psychatric domain, and is used in clinics and hospitals to reduce stress. A new study/experiment, using fMRI brain activation started to correlate the visible effects of this therapy with active zone of the brain. MBCT relies on intensive mental training with focussed, sustained attention practices. This is equivalent to the first phases of meditation practices and the results of this study brings another demonstration of the relationship/influence the mental can have on the physical body.
Sri Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga Philosophy was published, starting August 1914, in an Indian review, the Arya. It offered a synthesis of some of the main yoga philosophies from India, the Bhakti (adoration), Karma (action), and Jnana (knowledge) yoga. This synthesis is presented as a path to perceive, understand and to live the One Life.
Modern integrative medicine has brought trans-personal themes inside the mainstream of contemporary healthcare. This article provides with an overview of Sri Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga in clinical practices. It encompasses topics as reincarnation, the chakra’s system, parapsychology and mind-body healing.
Scientists are exploring interactions/relationships between mind and brain. Mind’s effect on matter is scientifically studied and a new model/mechanism is proposed, using and extension of the Bohmian Quantum Mechanics, combined with Avicenna’s philosophical ideas. This study try to demonstrate the causal effect of the mind on the brain, as an incorporeal essence.
Mme Blavatsky often wrote comments on the functions of the brain. Here are two excerpts of her articles :
“The fact is that the human brain is simply the canal between two planes – the psycho-spiritual and the material – through which every abstract and metaphysical idea filters from the Manasic down to the lower human consciousness. Therefore, the ideas about the infinite and the absolute are not, nor can they be, within our brain capacities.” (Lucifer, Vol. V, N° 26, October, 1889)
“The special organ of consciousness is of course the brain, and is located in the aura of the pineal gland in the living man. During the process of mind or thought manifesting to consciousness, constant vibrations of light take place… What consciousness is can never be defined psychologically. We can analyze and classify its works and effects – we cannot define it, unless we postulate an Ego distinct from the body.” (The Theosophist, Vol. XLVI, N° 11, August 1925 )
A new study published in Current Biology reveals that religious belief has a negative influence on children’s altruism and judgments of other’s actions. The survey covers some of the monotheistic religions only (Christian’s and Moslem’s). This study report was later on retracted from publication, but can still be accessed here.
Madame Blavastky wrote an article in The Theosophist, Vol. V, N° 2 (1883) about morality and religion : “Exoteric religions base their morality on the hope of reward and fear of punishment at the hands of an Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe by following the rules he has at his pleasure laid down for the obedience of his helpless subjects; in some cases, however, religions of later growth have made morality to depend on the sentiment of gratitude to that Ruler for benefits received. The worthlessness, not to speak of the mischievousness, of such systems of morality, is almost self-evident.”
Trading between honesty and self-interest is a good indicator of the state of maturity of our societies. A recent study using field experiment in 40 countries shows how honest behavior can be affected by a number of societal factors.
Complaining is very common in our human overstressed societies. This research shows how the brain mechanism handle it. The neuropsychologist Donald Hebb developed a theory in the early 1950’s – the Hebbian Theory – which explains how neurons are pairing together in a learning process similar to what recent researches in Artificial Intelligence (AI) called ” Unsupervised Learning”. This article identifies the various types of complainers and gives some advices.
Science had already shown that dogs can see and hear the signs of human emotions. A new study focused on the evidence that dogs are sensitive to the human’s attentional state when producing facial expressions, and concluded that : “Dogs’ production of facial expressions is subject to audience effects, and can be tailored to the human attentional state suggesting some communicative function and are not simple emotional displays based on the dogs arousal state.“