The International Self-Realization Healing Association (ISRHA) began in the 1990s as a professional association for healers trained by Mata Yogananda, formerly a disciple of Swami Paramahansa Yogananda, and her husband Peter Sevananda. Mata Yogananda is the founder of the Self-Realization Meditation Healing Centre that in 1988 moved to its present site in Somerset, England.
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Through the 1980s and 1990s they trained a number of healers who subsequently emerged as full-time spiritual healers who remain in relationship with Mata Yogananda. Several also founded Self-Realization Healing Centres.
Within the association, spiritual healing is seen to begin with the subtle energies released in the healing process that reach beneath the surface to free the patient from his/her problems. Spiritual healing is coupled with a process of "Progressive Counseling" that focuses on present problems and provides simple exercises to meet them. It is believed that healing and understanding have to be generated within the patient rather than imposed from outside. The healing energies reconnect the individual with what is seen as the universal source of spiritual awareness. During the healing process, patients learn to operate with the healing energies within themselves.
Members of the association have been trained to keep a spiritual attunement that allows them to serve as healers and counselors. In England, the work of spiritual healers has gained some legal status and patients in hospitals are free to call them to their bedside. There is less recognition in other countries. Through the 1990s, a number of healers established centers across the United Kingdom and others from several countries of the British Commonwealth also trained with Mata Yogananda and Peter Sevananda. After the ISRHA was founded, affiliated members appeared in Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.