Holistic Health Practices/Part 6

By: Dr. John Ankerberg, Dr. John Weldon; ©2006
Autogenic training is a medical “mind-body” therapy developed by J.H. Schulz and Wolfgang Luth.

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What Is Autogenic Training?

Autogenic training is a medical “mind-body” therapy developed by psychiatrist J.H. Schulz and his student, Wolfgang Luth. It is the result, in part, of Schulz’s observations of the hypnosis research of brain physiologist Oskar Vogt plus Schulz’s own studies into yoga, Zen Buddhism, and hypnosis. The practice involves an eight-to-ten-week course that includes one hour per week of instruction plus various exercises three times a day. These exercises are designed to lead participants into a very deep state of relaxation. Visualization and meditation may also be employed.

Here, there is little difference between autogenic training and other self-hypnosis/ meditation/visualization programs that may produce health benefits from nothing more than positive thinking and a relaxed mind and body. That many physical conditions will respond in some degree to a more relaxed lifestyle is not surprising. But these methods are far from cure-alls, and they may also have spiritual consequences more costly than their health benefits.

What is often not recognized in such practices is the occult potential and/or spiritual implications. For example, many methods of autogenic training are similar to those found in the psychosynthesis program developed by occultist Robert Assagioli. Techniques which employ hypnosis, New Age meditation, and visualization, and rely upon an alleged “inner self” for guidance have too many potential or actual associations with the occult.

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