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The origins of psychopathologic states are believed to be determined by the interactions of both the environment and the genetic factors, especially during the sensitive periods of development. Since multiple risk factors can play a role in the origin of mental disorders, it is likely that multiple approaches in treatment can be used to alleviate their symptoms. Kundalini yoga meditation is a unique approach. Shannahoff-Khalsa is not only helping to disseminate this knowledge but he is also helping to set the stage to create a scientific perspective for Kundalini yoga. In his book, he clearly describes a wide array of disorder-specific protocols that have helped uncountable individuals and can now be backed up by evidenced-based studies.
In this new book, David Shannahoff-Khalsa brings together his 20+ years of experience using Kundalini yoga meditation to understand and treat psychiatric disorders. Having worked with David on the design of a new study in adults with OCD, I can attest to the seriousness of his scholarship. And having been a lifelong meditator in another Asian meditation tradition, I can also attest to the enormous wisdom and practical value embedded in his work. In fact, David's careful translation of Kundalini practices for Western audiences is a model of both academic rigor and a testimony to his great compassion for those afflicted with mental illness. I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in applying Kundalini yoga in a psychiatric context.
Shannahoff-Khalsa expertly presents ways that Kundalini yoga can help people overcome an array of symptoms, such as bouts of insomnia, stress, or anxiety from interpersonal problems. Breathing is a major way in which we can link the outside world of our internal environments, and this books lays out a series of exercises that have worked for centuries to help mankind cope. I personality prescribe a few of the exercises to even my most debilitated CFS patients. Besides the possibility of improved health, the exercises are a way to put control back into the patient's hands.
This is an outstanding book! Shannahoff-Khalsa does an exemplary job in text and with photographs explicating the use of over 50 different Kundalini yoga meditation techniques for the treatment of psychiatric and relationship disorders. Applying his remarkable grasp of physiology, psychiatry, scientific method, and ancient yoga techniques, he enlightens the reader with practical guidelines on how to view and use these methods to help patients in distress.
Eastern wisdom informs Western science in David Shannahoff-Khalsa's quest to bring the benefits of Kundalini yoga meditation to relieve the emotional pain and mental distress of obsessive compulsive disorder and other disabling psychiatric conditions. Richly illustrated with clinical case histories, this book bridges the tensions between these two world views by offering a detailed repertoire of yogic breathing techniques and postures embedded within controlled treatment outcome trials. Readily practiced within everyday settings, these techniques open the ancient yogic technology of the mind to the reader while remaining grounded in modern neuroscience.
Most psychiatric disorders are chronic and disabling. Since current treatments often do not provide full symptom remission, additional approaches are needed. In this new book, Shannahoff-Khalsa continues to increase the credibility of Kundalini Yoga as one such approach. The yoga protocols introduced can serve as adjuncts to the treatment of specific psychiatric and personality disorders not explored in his previous books.
Our understanding psychopathology and related mind-body states is incomplete. Shannahoff-Khalsa provides a well-informed overview of some of the most challenging disorders and currently available treatments, describing his experience working with severely affected individuals where intensive practice of specific yogic protocols resulted in substantial clinical improvement.
The successful use of Kundalini Yoga to treat severe psychiatric illness is one of those disruptive observations that should make us sit up and wonder if we really know as much as we think we do. A first rate scientist and a high order Yogic practitioner and teacher, David Shannahoff-Khalsa draws on one of the world's great wisdom traditions, providing much that may be of value to patients and practitioners and much that should stimulate further study.