According to a recent study, spending time in an Indian temple improves mental illnesses as much as conventional medication. Reserchers in a new study, India, looked at how traditional healing practices might help those with mental disorder. The temple of Muthuswamy in South India has long been a healing centre for those with a mental health problem and those attending during a short period in 1000 were enrolled in the study.
A total of 20 people suffering variously from schizophrenia, manic depression and delusions were assessed by a psychiatrist before and after their stay. Being at the temple produced an average 15 per cent improvement in mental health ratings - about what would be expected by using psychiatric drugs. The participants merely took part in the temple routines, and did not undergo specific healing rituals. The researchers conclude that the improvement arose from the supportive environment of the temple something that could be reproduced in community mental health services anywhere in the world.