The practice of Naikan Therapy has been applied successfully in Naikan Retreat and Meditation Centres in Europe and Japan with issues like substance abuse, depression, anxiety, criminal behaviour, and family discord. The approach differs in many ways from traditional western therapy approaches. For example, traditional treatment approaches focus on feelings, whilst Naikan Therapy focuses on facts and the reality of relationships. Western approaches may place more emphasis on looking at how the client has been hurt or mistreated by others, whilst Naikan Tharapy encourages more focus on how the client has been cared for and supported.
In traditional approaches, the therapist offers significant validation of the client’s experiences, whilst in Naikan Therapy, the therapist also helps the client understand the experiences of others, and take responsibility for their own actions and outcomes. Finally, in western approaches the therapist may provide analysis and interpretation of the client’s feelings and experiences, whilst a Naikan Therapist helps the client create a framework for self-reflection (Krech, 2002).
“Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”
― C.G. Jung