Mind Body healing, Loving Kindness, Placebo and Positive Psychology

The one difference between positive psychology and pop self-help psychology is scientific inquiry that positive psychology seeks. Non religious spiritual practices like Loving Kindness or compassion meditation has immense potential, according to the research in the area. As a positive psychology practitioner, the writer of this blog believes that there is a need to study the placebo effect when it comes to our fair belief in a better outcome of a practice. For example, when we take up a body scan meditation, we already know that we would be in a better frame of mind once the meditation cycle is completed. Of course, an observant breathing also makes us calmer. Loving Kindness meditation similarly makes us feel good about ourselves and others and has tremendous therapeutic properties and it uplifts our positive emotions.

When it comes to mind-body practice like Reiki, in various studies it has been found that the participants who receive reiki healing have shown enhancement in their immunity. Again, finding comfort with the healer and a quiet space also adds up to feeling nice about oneself. Here of course there is certainly some element of the placebo effect that needs to be studied. In India, the new age spiritual practitioners are interested in Buddhism and some of the self-help that has emerged through that, including the practice of pranic healing, which is closer to Reiki in its approach. The difference is that pranic healing practice does not include touch therapy which is an important part of Reiki. The challenge is the dogma of the practice which makes people believe in a great deal of unscientific concepts like past births and so on. If it is a positive practice that makes people enhance their wellbeing, one should go for it.

In this short essay, my argument is that a daily positive habit (like mindfulness, compassion meditation or self-Reiki healing) is surely helpful in the following ways;

1. Enhancement of positive emotions
2. Developing better ways to perceive relationships that did not work in the past
3. Adding to purpose and meaning 
4. Makes one self-aware of their choices

Indeed, there are benefits which cannot be overlooked if one sees these interventions as helpful and not something that makes people dogmatic. Dogma makes people follow practices with rituals and there is a possibility that people become hard on themselves.  

Hence all the practices when they convert into serene and interesting daily habits have the capability to make your life joyful.