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Yoga and Psychology: Language, Memory, and Mysticism
     

Yoga and Psychology: Language, Memory, and Mysticism

by Harold Coward
 

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ISBN-10: 0791455009

ISBN-13: 2900791455004

Pub. Date: 11/28/2002

Publisher: State University of New York Press

Harold Coward explores how the psychological aspects of Yoga philosophy have been important to intellectual developments both East and West. Foundational for Hindu, Jaina, and Buddhist thought and spiritual practice, Patanjali's Yoga Sutras, the classical statement of Eastern Yoga, are unique in their emphasis on the nature and importance of psychological processes.

Overview

Harold Coward explores how the psychological aspects of Yoga philosophy have been important to intellectual developments both East and West. Foundational for Hindu, Jaina, and Buddhist thought and spiritual practice, Patanjali's Yoga Sutras, the classical statement of Eastern Yoga, are unique in their emphasis on the nature and importance of psychological processes. Yoga's influence is explored in the work of both the seminal Indian thinker Bhartrhari (c. 600 C.E.) and among key figures in Western psychology: founders Freud and Jung, as well as contemporary transpersonalists such as Washburn, Tart, and Ornstein.

Coward shows how the yogic notion of psychological processes makes Bhartrhari's philosophy of language and his theology of revelation possible. He goes on to explore how Western psychology has been influenced by incorporating or rejecting Patanjali's Yoga. The implications of these trends in Western thought for mysticism and memory are examined as well. This analysis results in a notable insight, namely, that there is a crucial difference between Eastern and Western thought with regard to how limited or perfectible human nature is -- the West maintaining that we as humans are psychologically, philosophically, and spiritually limited or flawed in nature and thus not perfectible, while Patanjali's Yoga and Eastern thought generally maintain the opposite. Different Western responses to the Eastern position are noted, from complete rejection by Freud, Jung, and Hick, to varying degrees of acceptance by transpersonal thinkers.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2900791455004
Publisher:
State University of New York Press
Publication date:
11/28/2002
Series:
SUNY Series in Religious Studies Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
125

Table of Contents

Prefaceix
1Introduction1
Part IYoga and Language
2Agama in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali11
3The Yoga Psychology Underlying Bhartrhari's Vakyapadiya21
4Yoga in the Vairagya-Sataka of Bhartrhari41
Part IIYoga and Western Psychology
5Freud, Jung, and Yoga on Memory51
6Where Jung Draws the Line in His Acceptance of Patanjali's Yoga61
7Mysticism in Jung and Patanjali's Yoga71
8The Limits of Human Nature in Yoga and Transpersonal Psychology83
9Conclusion91
Notes93
Glossary of Sanskrit Terms107
Index113

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