The ancient definition of therapy was “one who ministers’ or heals. Yoga Therapy re-organizes an individual’s perspective to bring balance and attention to the whole by including the causal & subtle bodies in its methodology. The whole, however, also includes the cosmic environment as referenced in many of the yogic scriptures.
Astrology is unparalleled as a tool for understanding cosmic forces. Using simple astrological techniques can help identify the most pronounced energetic blockages and thereby increase the potential for yogic healing.
The first challenge in writing about the integration of these two different paths is establishing a working definition of both yoga & astrology that supports the intention of yoga therapy. It’s no secret that both of these ancient sciences have been sadly maligned and misappropriated in our current society.
The yoga part is fairly easy. Even a minimal amount of research will explain that yoga is more than just the physical challenges learning the postures (asana’s). There are many different ways to practice yoga and we don’t always have to use our bodies to reach the enlightened state that yoga promises. How we use our bodies during a yoga therapy session may be quite different than what we’ve come to expect in a typical ‘yoga class’. Those sensations that happen when we stretch give us a ‘focal point’ to then observe our own reactions and responses to that bodily ‘stress’ in the moment. What we do is not nearly as important as what we can observe. This is the practice of svadaya, or self-study without judgment, with the ultimate purpose towards creating unity of body/mind/spirit.
Astrology, too, is so broad a science/art today that has historical roots spanning thousands of years. After over 40 years of study and practice I can say that studying and learning astrology cultivates a perspective on life that, for me, releases a lot of stress. It’s a language of symbols that allows us to see ourselves and each other in our essence, in our purest form. Synchronicity is the key to knowing that cosmic forces are at play. The yogi’s call this Maya. Once one recognizes “as above, so below” and experiences the magic of that statement then astrology reveals itself. There are gazillions of methodologies, techniques and systems to put this essential truth into practical practice. A teacher is mandatory.