Ayurveda is one of the world’s oldest holistic healing systems. It was developed thousands of years ago in India. In the Rig Veda, over 60 preparation were mentioned that could be used to assist an individual in overcoming various ailments. The Rig Veda was written over 6,000 years ago, but really Ayurveda has been around even longer than that. It is a system of traditional medicine with its origin in the Indian subcontinent. It has been a popular and influential system of medicine in entire South Asia. The earliest literature of this traditional medicine system is said to have appeared during the Vedic period in India. The most influential of these Ayurveda literatures has been the Sushruta Samhita and the Charaka Samhita. Ayurveda is said to be a fully developed medicinal art with a number of unique and exclusive medicinal therapies and surgical procedures for the treatment of various ailments and diseases.
Meaning of word Ayurveda
Ayurveda is made up of two Sanskrit words: Ayu which means life and Veda which means the knowledge of. To know about life is Ayurveda. However, to fully comprehend the vast s cope of Ayurveda let us first define “Ayu” or life. According to the ancient Ayurvedic scholar Charaka, “ayu” is comprised of four essential parts. The combination of mind, body, senses and the soul.
Principles of Ayurveda
It is based on the belief that health and wellness depend on equilibrium of dosha, agni, dhatus, and mala and the happiness of atma, indriya and mana. The primary focus of Ayurvedic medicine is to promote good health, rather than fight disease. But treatments is recommended for specific health problems.
What does Ayurveda do to you?
The aim of this system is to prevent illness, heal the sick and preserve life.
This can be summed up as follows:
- To protect health and prolong life (“Swasthyas swasthya rakshanam”)
- To eliminate diseases and dysfunctions of the body (“Aturasya vikar prashamanamcha”)
Concepts of Panchamaha Bhutas
According to Ayurveda everything in life is composed of the Panchamahabhutas – Akash (Space), Vayu (Air), Jal (Water), Agni (Fire) and Prithvi (Earth). Omnipresent, they are mixed in an infinite variety of relative proportions such that each form of matter is distinctly unique. Although each element has a range of attributes, only some get evident in particular situations. Constantly changing and interacting with each other, they create a situation of dynamic flux that keeps the world going.
What is ‘Tridosha’ or the Theory of Bio-energies?
The three doshas, or bio-energies found in our body are:
- Vata pertains to air and ether elements. This energy is generally seen as the force, which directs nerve impulses, circulation, respiration, and elimination. It regulates all voluntary and involuntary functions of the body.
- Pitta pertains to fire and water elements. This dosha governs metabolism, e.g., the transformation of foods into nutrients. Pitta is also responsible for metabolism in the organ and tissue systems.
- Kapha pertains to water and earth elements. Kapha is responsible for growth and protection. The mucousal lining of the stomach, and the cerebral-spinal fluid that protects the brain and spinal column are examples of kapha.
Panchamaha Bhautic Combination of Ayurveda
Vata – Vayu+Akasha
Pitta – Agni+Jala
Kapha – Jala+Pruthvi
Parts of Ayurveda
It is Held That Ayurved Has Got Eight Parts as Astanga Ayurveda:-
- Kaya chikits (general medicine)
- Bala chikitsa/kaumarabhrtya (paediatrics)
- Graha chikitsa (psychiatry)
- Urdhvanga chikitsa (ophthalmology and otorhinolaryngology)
- Salya tantra (surgery)
- Damstra chikitsa (clinical toxicology)
- Jara chikitsa (rejuvenative)
- Vrsa chikitsa (reproductive medicine)