Integral Psychology Conference

Document Type

Audio File

Publication Date



Sri Aurobindo has referred to yoga as "nothing but practical psychology". What does he mean by this? And what does the term "practical psychology" connote to the western academic and practical "disciplines" of psychology and psychotherapy? In this talk, I will reflect on the term "practical psychology" as yoga and as therapy. Separating the two usages of the term I would like to explore the convergences and divergences in its understanding as seen by Sri Aurobindo and practitioners of his yoga and as seen by the western discipline of psychotherapy - two different semantic fields which are often spoken of as if they are or may become the same. The epistemological boundaries of these fields and the conditions of operation they impose would determine their degree of mutual translation. The exploration of these boundaries and operating conditions finally would rest upon a social critique which may point to a future practice of integral psychotherapy.


Presenter: Debashish Banerji, PhD, is the President of the Sri Aurobindo Center of Los Angeles. He has degrees in English Literature and Computer Science and is presently completing a PhD in Art History based on nationalism and modernity in India. He has worked as a journalist and computer scientist and presently teaches Asian Art History at the Pasadena City College. Debashish combines Aurobindonian and cultural studies perspectives in his interpretations of contemporary themes.