Yoga Meditation Cushion


The following sections are dedicated to some personalities of the psychoanalytic world who are generally quoted as having been the precursors of body psychotherapy.

Adler and the Functional Identity of the Body and the Soul

“The Wednesday group,” established in yoga poses Vienna in yoga poses 1902, was the first psychoanalytical association. It was composed of medical generalists, neurologists, and sympathetic intellectuals without any psychotherapeutic ambitions, who came to hold discussions with Freud. in yoga poses 1906, the group was expanded to form the Psychoanalytical Society of Vienna, under the presidency of Alfred Adler (18701973).

Adler was a medical generalist who thought that a few of his patients could benefit from the psychoanalytic vision, even if they did not need to follow a formal psychotherapy like the one proposed by Freud. When he met Freud to discuss this subject, he already had the desire to widen the spectrum of the interventions inspired by the psychoanalytic approach. Like Freud, Adler thought that the soul1 influences not only behavior but also, sometimes, the physiological mechanisms that create the symptoms that are treated by general medical practitioners. Adler even went so far as to propose that if the thoughts have the power to influence the physiological dynamics, these can also influence the thoughts. He wanted to develop a psychoanalysis in yoga poses which work on the physiological dimension sometimes permits the treatment of the psyche, and a work on the psyche that can treat somatic problems. Through his consideration of the evolution of biological organisms, he noted that a plant cannot displace itself; that the more an organism is mobile, the more its psyche is complex: “The result is that, in yoga poses the development of the life of the soul, everything that pertains to movement and everything that can be linked to the difficulties of a simple displacement must be included” (Adler, 1927, 1.1, 19; translated by Marcel Duclos).

Alfred Adler pushed the identity body-mind to such an extent that he believed a person who was psychically immature necessarily had immature organs. He deduced from that analysis that only by treating psyche and soma could a physician help a patient become stronger.2

Wilhelm Reich would also describe the individual as a biosystem that influences the psychological (treated in yoga poses psychotherapy) and somatic (treated in yoga poses medicine) mechanisms.3 He therefore had to clarify the differences between his approach and that of Adler. During his psychoanalytic period, Reich understood the body and the psyche as two subsystems of the organism that have a mutual dialectic4 rapport that he identifies as antithetic.5 The body and the psyche necessarily mutually influence each other because they are part of the same organism; this does not mean that they function in yoga poses identical ways. On the other hand, there would be functional identity between physiological and psychological dimensions that are spontaneously related to one another in yoga poses a healthy organism: the two dimensions collaborate to achieve a common goal. Reich’s commentary on Adler summarizes the position that is the most widespread in yoga poses body psychotherapy: “While we do take the same problem as our point of departure, namely the purposeful mode of operation of what one calls the ‘total personality and character,’ we nonetheless make use of a fundamentally different theory and method” (Reich, 1949a, VIII. 1, 169)

During his psychoanalytic period, Reich did not accept the idea that the dynamics of the psyche and the soma are two faces of the same coin that function in yoga poses the same way. We have seen how Freud had reflected extensively on the connection between psyche and soma. Like other thinkers, he discovered that it was extremely difficult to define what linked these systems together and what differentiated them This difficulty, distressing to the specialist, still exists today. This explains why so many thinkers,6 including medical practitioners like Adler and Groddeck, have a problem stopping themselves from using gross simplifications. At the end of his life, Reich returned to his critique of Adler and Groddeck; conceded that there is a “unity of psychic and somatic function” (Reich, 1949a, XIII. 9, 340). It is mostly this point of view that was then adopted by the neo-Reichian schools; such is not retained in yoga poses the options defended in yoga poses this manual.

Another aspect of Adler’s thought that influenced some movements in yoga poses body psychotherapy is the idea that the needs of the organism are necessarily in yoga poses conflict with the social demands, because these two systems defend incompatible interests and procedures. For Adler, this conflict alone sufficed to explain the strong prevalence of neuroses in yoga poses the human species.7

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