Yoga has surged forward in unprecedented dimensions over the past few decades. Not only has it been incorporated into the lives of millions of people around the world, but it has been investigated by scientists and eminent researchers who have seen in yoga something more than just physical exercise and beauty aids. Their work has shown that yoga has the power to change the course of world events and enhance the life of modern man.
Today the level of health throughout the world is low. Modern medicine has offered a scientific method of curing disease, ensured rigorous training of its practitioners and demanded a moral and ethical code that has brought about a relationship of faith and trust between doctor and patient. In the past it prevented epidemics of smallpox, polio and infectious diseases as well as improving sanitation, lifestyle and longevity. But something is lacking, for people are still suffering and sick. If it is not infections or poor sanitation that are killing people, then it is cancer and high blood pressure. More and more people are questioning the old ways, seeking new and more satisfactory methods and alternatives, trying to make the world a better place in which to live. Today we are facing a time of crisis in world events and in all fields of society. Thus people are turning towards yoga for help.
Yoga does not need medicine, but medicine needs yoga. Yoga can be incorporated into the existing system of allopathy with tremendous benefits. For example, scientific experiments on yoga have shown that through meditation alone it is possible to bring about relaxation of body and mind, thus eliminating the root cause of disease. This has been proved by the following parameters found in meditation:
These factors indicate relaxation of body and mind and better functioning of the whole human organism. People report that through meditation they feel stronger, more relaxed and less prone to disease than before.
Experimental evidence is so strongly in favour of meditation and yoga in terms of better health and efficiency that the USA has incorporated it into government offices and the army. Some states are teaching meditation in schools and big business corporations are using meditation before conferences and meetings.
Yoga has been evaluated in hospitals as treatment for almost every disease including cancer, diabetes, goitre, sinusitis, bronchitis, asthma, arthritis, kidney disease, skin diseases such as eczema and psoriasis, paralysis, motor neurone disease, parkinsonism, poliomyelitis, headache and migraine, hypertension, valvular heart disease, coronary arterial disease, and many more.
Asanas stretch the muscles, loosen up the joints, remove toxins, harmonise the nervous system and massage internal organs so that circulation is improved. Pranayama controls the breath which relaxes and cleans the mind, removing tension, anxiety, neurosis and psychosis. Yogic kriyas clean the whole body from top to toe, and maintain a pure state of body and mind. Meditation allows you to become internally aware so that you can gain conscious control over the processes of body and mind that you once thought were automatic and unconscious, such as the autonomic nervous system and all of its connections to the heart, lungs and digestive system. This has been proved by the new technique of biofeedback, where autonomic function has been consciously controlled so that a practitioner can raise or lower his blood pressure, increase the circulation in one limb, or perform similar feats at will.
Therefore, yoga removes the stresses of modern living by harmonising the mind and body and co-ordinating metabolic processes which are rhythmical in nature and intimately interconnected.
But this is not all. Yoga has systems to awaken the kundalini which can be utilised in kundalini therapy, a new idea for the future. In this way the innate potential and birthright of every individual will be brought to fruition and thus the whole of mankind will evolve to higher planes of consciousness.
Modern medicine can only benefit by a detailed study of yogic techniques and their application to the different types of disease. Integration of yoga with already existing therapies will broaden the scope for meeting the needs of the patient and solving many of the existing problems facing us today. One day we may see yoga practised in hospitals, enabling patients to cure themselves with a programme of asanas and pranayamas, and also to prevent further disease. Soon there will be a need for the medical profession to meet the growing public demand for yogic treatment. Then the golden age of integral medicine will dawn in which yoga will emerge as a mighty healing force.