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Inner Light Perception of Vihangam Yogis: A Qualitative Study

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Meditation hasrecently emerged as a topic of interest for the medicinal scientists as well as for the neuropsychological scientists for different reasons. The methods used by both of these approaches have been mostly objective. This quest of objectification has led to vigorous use of tools like EEG and ERP, which has definitely led to revealing of marvellous aspects of meditation. However, the subjective states of meditation have been much less explored, especially when seen in contrast to the objective states. The need of the hour is to use the qualitative methods for exploration of these states because these methods better depict the unique experiences of meditation. In this context, we conducted a qualitative study in the form of Interpretative phenomenological analysis to explore the subjective experiences associated with the inner-light perception of a group of meditators practising the meditation technique of Vihangam Yoga. It is an ancient meditation technique of India, initiated by HH Sadguru Sadafal Deoji Maharaj in the year 1924 and now being propogated by HH Sadguru Swatantra Deoji Maharaj. When asked in detail, the practitioners often report of many mystique experiences. This particular Yoga group was chosen because in a survey of among four groups, the maximum number of confident mediators reporting of perceiving some sort of luminance during meditation was found in this group. For this study, the inner-light perception experience of this meditation was chosen because of the divine value attached to this experience across all the cultures and religions. This experience was also chosen because of the great impact on their lives that Vihangam Yogis attributed to this experience. As the results of the study, four major themes were obtained which were: (a) Uniqueness of the nature of light (b) Experiences during light perception (c) Explanations of the source of light (d) Change in outlook towards world and associated changes in thinking.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Boys Hostel No. 1, Room No. 10, Central Institute of Psychiatry, Kanke, Ranchi, India 834006., Email:

Publication date: January 1, 2009


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