In this book the author shows how psychological and spiritual sufferings are interwoven, and how tradition with its answers can collaborate with psychology to alleviate them. He starts by questioning the Western notion of normality, saying it reduces human and spiritual potentials for growth to a kind of average neurosis. He speaks of depression or depression-like reactions as an opening door towards spirituality, if dealt with in the right way. He attempts to discriminate between pathology and mysticism in what is called by psychologists regression and disso ciation, and can be in some cases the awaken ing of the spiritual childhood or liberation of the mind from social conditionings. Dr. Vigne, who has been familiar with Christian monas teries as well, tries to understand why the spiritual transmission in Christianity has been more institutional, while in Hinduism it has been more from Guru to disciple. He further develops the comparison between non dualism in India and among certain Christian mystics.This book is written for the reader who does not resign himself to live in closed compartments, but whose mind and heart is searching for the unity beyond diversity.
Dr. Jacques Vigne was born in Paris in 1956; he studied there upto the M.D. and psychiatrist degree. He has been trained as a Medical Doctor, Psychiatrist and Psychothera pist in Paris and in India in Indology. For the past eleven years Dr. Vigne is living in India. He has himself experienced the master-disciple relationship. Dr. Vigne can be considered as a second generation represen tative of the meeting of French people with Hindu spirituality. After travelling widely throughout India, he has authored three books on spiritual psychology and devotes now his time to spiritual practices. He has also written two short stories in French, where he evokes the relationship between spiritual master and disciple in a literary way. His writings are a contribution to a better understanding of East and West, as well as between modern psychology and spirituality. From time to time, he conducts tours of lectures and work shops in Europe, but basically resides in India near Haridwar.
I am glad to see the Indian edition of Indian Wisdom, Christianity and Modern Psychology. It has been first published in Paris by Albin Michel in the series 'Spiritualités vivantes' (living Spiritualities) which started half a century ago to publish books on Eastern, and especially Indian spirituality. They began to translate the teachings of sages like Ramakrishna, Vivekananda, Ma Anandamayi, Shri Aurobindo, Ramana Maharshi, etc., and afterwards they opened themselves to the writings of Western authors on comparative spirituality. They have now more than 250 titles. This book, along with my Indian Teaching Tradition published by the same BRPC, are the two first titles of this series to be translated into English.There are three main approaches to an understanding of the mind: the Eastern one, based on the Indian tradition, the traditional Western one, founded on Christianity and the modern Western one which corresponds to psycholgy. A comparison of the three approaches will be found in this book: an ambitious programme indeed, but necessary in our time of increasing exchange between the cultures. My Christian origin and training, my studies of psychiatry and my present interest for the Vedantic path have prepared me for this synthesis. Each of these three approaches to the mind has its own individuality and internal logic, but it does not prevent one to ponder about their relationships and to get inspired by good traits of another approach. Just two years ago, this book was published in Poland, where quite a few people are reflecting on the link between traditional Christianity, Eastern spirituality and psychology. I hope my third book Meditation et psychologie, recently released in Paris, will find its way towards translations as well, thus facilitating a better understanding between India and the West, and, in both cultures, between tradition and modernity. As for me, I am glad, through these two books, to give back to 'Mother India' what she has abundantly offered me during these last twelve years I have been living on her soil.
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