“The root cause of all the problems in this world is mental disturbance. Acts like homicide or sectarianism are caused by severe disturbance of the mind,” says the Dalai Lama. This statement summed up the seventh Body, Mind, and Life Conference organised by the Tibetan Medical and Astro-science Institute, Men-Tsee-Khang and the Foundation for Universal Responsibility of His Holiness the Dalai Lama (FURHHDL) at the India Habitat Centre, New Delhi, on April 2 and 3, 2018.
The two-day conference discussed the topical issue of ‘treatment of mental disorders.’ Speakers from diverse fields like Buddhist psychology, Tibetan medicine, ayurveda medicine, siddha medicine, unani medicine, yoga, and Western medicine shared their perspective on the topic.
HE Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, master of the Karma Kagyu and Nyingma lineages of Tibetan Buddhism, spoke about how Buddhist tradition-based meditation helped him overcome panic disorder, which he had suffered from, since childhood. “I successfully dealt with this problem in the middle of a three-year retreat. We can make friends with some of our mental health problems first, and then use awareness and compassion to transform them on the path towards recognising our own innate wisdom,” he said.
Experts on various modalities shared their take on managing mental disorders. Medical scientist and celebrated yoga exponent Dr Ramesh Bijlani said, “Stress can be managed through cognitive restructuring. Cognitive restructuring based on yoga goes beyond using logic to make the patient see something positive in the situation. Even when there is nothing else that is logically positive in the situation, there is at least one thing positive from the yogic standpoint: every situation, without exception, is an opportunity for spiritual growth. To this psycho-spiritual approach may be added a few practices such as relaxing asanas and pranayamas, and meditation.”
Apart from the annual conferences, Men-Tsee-Khang has been organising a series of 10-day mental healthcare service course every year since the last 10 years.
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