Yoga Retreat

Concept of Intelligence According To Modern Science and Ancient Texts

A Dissertation submitted by AUDREY GOMES
Under the guidance of Dr. H.R. Nagendra Ph.D, Dr. R. Nagarathna, M.D. F.R.C.P.
Towards the partial fulfillment of The Masters Degree in Yogic Sciences (M.Sc.) to
Vivekananda Yoga Mahavidyapeetham of
Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana
(Deemed University, Recognized by UGC, Govt. of India through HRD)
 19, Eknath Bhavan, Gavipuram Circle, K.G. Nagar,
Bangalore - 560 019, India


Abstract :Intelligence has been described (on Microsoft Encarta 98) as the 'capacity to learn or to understand'. However, Gross (1) reminds us that "The concept of intelligence is extremely difficult to define, despite being one of the most intensively researched aspects of individual difference and having such practical significance". 'General Intelligence' is a term first coined by Spearman in 1923 (2). It is the idea that there is a general intelligence opposed to much different intelligence. The concept that there is one intelligence means that it can be easily measured; this is the reason that Intelligence Quotient (IQ) tests are used in many situations. According to Ancient Indian Texts Intelligence is regarded as a means to an end rather than an end in itself.

This paper is an attempt to review various theories on Intelligence according to Modern Science and explore the concept according to the Ancient Texts.


Summary & Conclusion : 

  1. There are several studies on the efficacy of yoga in improving mental functions of normal and subnormal adults and children but there are no studies on the effect of yoga in normal healthy children on their Intelligence Quotient

  2. The aim of this study was to assess the efficacy of intensive integrated yoga modules on children in regard to their Intelligence Quotient.

  3. The present study was also done to examine whether the intelligence quotient group (yoga module) showed much improvement in the IQ in school children. The present study was also done to check whether gender had an effect on the changes in IQ scores.

  4. In this study, 153 school children (age range = 13 to15 years) were randomly assigned to three groups namely IQ, CR, and PS.

  5. The groups had interventions of IYM to enhance CR, IQ and PS. The number of students in each group was IQ (n=51), CR (n=52), PS (n=50).

  6. The assessments for intelligence quotient were taken on the 1st and 9th day of the course. The necessary conditions for the test namely, the seating arrangement, timing was strictly adhered to.

  7. The scoring done for the test was based on Draw a man test Indian version for children. The intervention for the study included yoga practices, which were very specific for the three yoga modules.

  8. The base line data was analyzed by one way ANOVA. Pre-post data of all three and full group were analyzed with Paired-t test and group comparison by Tukey test. The gender effect was explored by Paired-t test for all three groups as well as the full group. Male and female gender comparison was done by paired t test.

  9. The analysis of data was done after checking for elimination of abnormal data and attrition of data.
    a. The normality test showed that the groups were of normal distribution.
    b. The 'f' test showed that the groups were homogenous.
    c. The Paired' test indicated that IQ group showed improvement.
    d. The Multiple comparison Tukey test showed that there was significant difference between groups. It showed that the IQ group showed more significant change than the other two groups.
    e. The paired t test for male Vs female showed that both males and females improved although there was a significant improvement only in the IQ group (P<0.01) males (5.88%) and females (7.54%). .Males of all groups improved while among females, the PS group showed a slight decrease of -0.65%.


  1. The above study shows that Yoga has a role to play in the improvement of intelligence quotient, with greater improvement in the IQ group. The improvement in IQ may be due to balancing, relaxation & anxiety reducing effects of yoga practices.

  2. The results suggest that the hypothesis was correct, i.e. it has shown improvement in the intelligence quotient group. Age as a factor may also be related to the increase in test scores. Further studies could be done after matching for age, for the three groups, to test the speculation.

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Summary & Conclusion

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