(Self) love is a tricky word to translate into Yoga’s language. However, self-respect and self-connection are probably two concepts that come close and they definitely play an important role in Yoga. In so many ways Yoga teaches us to respect and honour ourselves for who we are, and what we are capable of becoming. Yoga does not preach us to become like another, but rather teaches us to become the best we are capable of. This way the deep connection to our self is an important lesson. When we disconnect from ourself, or disrespect ourself and try to become someone else, then we are going against our inherent nature and there is deep conflict. Not only at a surface level, but also at a very deep level as well. This is one of the origins of negative patterns and diseases, which are originating from self-negation. And this can create a lot of suffering for us.
Even when we look at chanting only physically, in order to produce certain sounds you need to aspirate and you also need to use the nose or the throat, etc. So sound engages different parts of our body. If I want to produce a sound with what we call Maha Prana it will cause a contraction of the stomach and thus also works on the internal organs. It is known to reduce weight and even regulate the menstruation of women. One woman had a problem with her menstrual cycles ever since she got it in puberty. She learned chanting and after having chanted regularly for two years her period became well regulated.And as a tool for therapy, especially when we talk about stress, chanting or sound can relax people immensly. It can be a great helper against sleeplessness. I have also worked with mentally retarded children and have seen a lot of positive effects with chanting. Problems like drooling or stuttering can be reduced. Some of the friction sounds like Hram for example can help them so much.
One reason why yoga therapy is so efficient is because it engages the patient in the healing process. When we take responsibility for our health we can take care of ourselves better, because we are actively involved in understanding the causes of our suffering and how to alleviate them. The second reason why yoga therapy is effective is because it takes a multidimensional approach. It views every individual as a collection of different layers and therefore has effective tools to address more layers than just one. The third reason why yoga therapy is effective is because it views every individual as unique and therefore does not prescribe one solution that works for all. It takes into consideration different unique parameters of the patient such as their age, their illness, their strength, their mental capacity, the amount of time they can afford, the other illnesses that accompany them, family circumstances, etc. And then yoga therapy prescribes a unique individual approach that is tailor made for every individual. Another reason why yoga therapy is very effective is also because when implemented in an appropriate way, yoga therapy does usually not create any bad side effects for the patient because the practice of yoga is a non-invasive process that utilizes the international resources of the body such as body, breath and mind. My grandfather T. Krishnamacharya used to refer to it as surgery without surgical instruments.