Translating an Ayurvedic Psychology

Presentation from the Maharshi Ayurveda and Psychology Conference 2017 The Āyurvedic literature along with Jyotiṣa, Yoga, Tantra, classical Indian music and theater, contain explicit and implicit psychological material and practices that reveal a complex integral understanding of the mind and healing. There have been many attempts to integrate these concepts into Western psychology, or translate Eastern concepts into Western psychological language. But the field of western psychology is expanding and changing every decade. Modern psychology has multiple schools of thought and a newly emerging field which is trying to integrate them. Present integral psychologies mix various western techniques without a framework of mind or consciousness and some even appropriate Vedic terminology for western biomechanical concepts. Modern Āyurveda, as it is practiced in India, is already an integration of ancient wisdom and modern knowledge. This approach holds the potential to create a psychological infrastructure for modern day contradictory theories and research to be understood as working on different levels of the human being. By utilizing the sthūla, sūkṣma, and kāraṇa śarīra with their associated anatomy, Āyurveda provides a truly holistic framework for an integral psychology that incorporates both ancient and modern science.


Qualitative Research on Prajñāparādha

As part of a research panel discussion at the 2019 National Ayurvedic Medical Association Conference, Freedom Cole discusses his in-progress clinical research on prajñāparādha and mental illness. Recent research has indicated that a large percentage of people with mental illness have a trauma history. Freedom compares people with a yoga practice of more than ten years to those with a trauma history level indicated to heighten the risk of mental and physical disease. In the lecture, he describes the benefits of qualitative phenomenological research and discusses how it allows us to collect data on the benefits of Yoga and Āyurveda without limiting a holistic application. He then compares the indications of prajñāparādha in Charaka Samhita to the modern phenomenology of trauma.


Understanding Trauma and Prajnaparadha