Ayurveda Treatments at Nilayoram
Ayurveda, the Indian System of medicine and treatment has
a hoary tradition. Kerala, the southern state of India is well known
for its ayurvedic heritage. A balanced, healthy, enjoyable and
successful life entails harmony between Mind, Body and Spirit. If
any one of these suffers an imbalance, disharmony is immediately
evident. Time at Nilayoram is devoted completely to well being. We
offer a host of ayurvedic Treatments to enhance, restore and renew
The resort is conceived to
become a rendezvous for pleasure and purification. It works wonders
in unwinding, while purifying dryer body and soul in harmony with
nature. The riverfront facility with lush greenery and tranquil
surroundings is the most ideal location to be in and enjoy
thoroughly the luxury of being one amongst a very few occupants.
Upon your arrival at the
resort, a team of eminent ayurveda physicians will examine the
patient and after panel discussion and consultation, appropriate
treatment will be charted. The entire treatment will be supervised
by senior doctors and executed by qualified and experienced
masseurs. All the external and internal herbs administered are
prepared in traditional way and hence unequivocal quality and result
are obtained. Wholesome vegetarian food is provided during treatment
offered at our Centre are:
Actions and indications
Tones muscle, improves circulation. Balances
Obesity, Especially for Diabetic Gangrene
Rejuvenate the entire body, esp.
neuromuscular system. Balances Vata. Rheumatic diseases like
Arthritis, Paralysis, Hemiplegia, Epilepsy, Paralysis-Agitanus
and Sexual weakness.
Rejuvenates all tissues. Balances Vata
Weight loss, Rheumatism, Pain in the Joints,
Emaciation of limbs, High blood pressure, Cholesterol and
certain kinds of skin diseases.
Deep relaxation. Brain rejuvenation. Balances
Insomnia, Vata aggravation, Stress related
Brain and neuromuscular tonic. Whole body
Epilepsy, Facial paralysis, Dryness of
nostrils, mouth and throat, Severe headaches, and other Vata
Balances Vata. Tonic. Arthritis, Paralysis, Hemiplegia, Numbness,
Gastric complaints associated with Rheumatism and constant
Loose weight, improve circulation. Hemiplegia,
Paralysis, Obesity and certain Rheumatic ailments
Sinusitis, recurrent respiratory
problems.Headaches, Brain disorders, some types of skin
Internal rejuvenation. Improves immunity.
Aids cleansing. Also used in Osteoarthritis, Psoriasis,
Anti inflammatory tonic. Gentle, deep
cleansing. Osteoarthritis, arthritis with swelling,
spondylitis, sports injuries etc.
Female reproductive disorders. Endometriosis,
cysts and fibroids, tumors, infertility.
Strong and flexible back. Disc prolapse, Back
pain and spinal disorders.
Tones respiratory system and heart. Asthma,
other respiratory problems hearth diseases and muscular
Tones facial nerves and muscles. Facial
paralysis, speech disorders and other nervous disorders of
Improves sleep. Strengthens eyesight. ENT
problems, insomnia, migraine etc.
gifted Kerala invites tourists to experience and cherish the
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Kerala Hill Holidays
Kerala, popularly regarded as 'God's own
country', is probably the most beautiful, exotic and picturesque
state of India. Flanked by the blue waters of the Arabian Sea in the
west and the Western Ghats (mountain ranges) in the east, Kerala
abounds in exotic and beautiful Hill stations, lovely beaches and
serene and calm backwaters. The unparallel Natural beauty of Kerala
attracts thousands of tourists from all over the world round the
year. And rightly so, the National Geographic Traveler ranked it as
One of the 50 'Paradise Found' on the earth.
The hill stations of Kerala are known for their
exotic charm and beauty that can't be defined in words. Located
amidst the lush green vegetation with numerous milky waterfalls,
ravishing rivulets, splendid springs, lakes and hill-plantations,
they provide an enthralling experience to tourists. Sprawling spice
and tea plantations on the hill slopes provide you an enchanting
sight. The fresh and pristine air filled with the fragrance of
cardamom and pepper makes a spellbound effect on your body soul.
Amidst such surroundings you feel like as if you are in a paradise.
One of the major advantages of holidaying in Kerala hill station is
that they are relatively less crowded in comparison to hill stations
of north India.
Ayurveda in Kerala
Kerala, the land of spices, is the
best place to get to know and experience. Ayurveda, be it Ayurvedic
products or service.
Ayurveda, the 5000-year-old natural herbal health care system has
been recognized the world over as the most perfected body-mind
health care system. Ayurveda, a holistic system of medicine that is
rejuvenative and therapeutic, is widely practiced in India. Kerala,
the tropical paradise on the southwest seaboard, is well known as
the heart land of Ayurveda.
Kerala, the confluence of different natural herbal systems, enriched
and fine-tuned Ayurveda. While the Ayurvedic system was enriched by
Siddha and Marma systems in southern Kerala, it joined hands with
Kalaripayattu and Kalari Therapy in northern Kerala. This resulted
in the emergence of a new stream noted for its special procedures
Kerala, situated in the tropical
region, has an unparalleled herbal wealth compared to the other
parts of India. Though the very same herbs are found in the
Himalayas, the herbs of Kerala have a special potency due to its
unique geographical position and tropical climate. These aspects
made it possible for the healers of Kerala to perfect the
preparation of Ayurvedic medicine. Even for classic Ayurvedic
preparations, Kerala Ayurveda has evolved its own formulations that
are superior in effec
Kerala has an unbroken tradition of
Sanskrit (the language of ancient wisdom) learning. This knowledge
of Sanskrit enables the healers of Kerala to interpret the Ayurvedic
system accurately and get a proper insight. The Namboothiri Brahmins
even today follow the Vedic tradition and knowledge systems. They
are the only people who can perform the fire sacrifices or yajnas as
they were done during the Vedic times and pronounce the Vedic chants
the original way. They still practice Ayurveda and contribute to the
efficacy of the system. Sanskrit learning has spread to all layers
of Kerala society. Ayurveda is a living tradition belonging to
people of all socio-cultural groups.
Legend has it that when Parasuram
created Kerala, the southernmost tip of India, it consisted of 18
city-states with 18 kings to rule over them. Each city-state also
had a family that practiced Ayurveda and other traditional healing
systems in order to look after king and his subjects. These medical
practitioners were known as Ashtavaidyans, literally translated to
doctors trained in the 8 (ashta means eight) branches of Ayurvedic
medicine - kaayam (general medicine, baalam (pediatrics), griham
(psychiatry), urdhavangam (including all the organs above the neck -
eyes, ears, nose, teeth, throat, etc.), shalyam (surgery), dhamshtra
(therapy for poisoning), jara (anti-ageing treatment) and sexual
Thus, 18 families of Ashtavaidyans existed in the days of yore. They
were the torchbearers of the 5000-year-old Ayurvedic healing system
in Kerala. However, since they were engaged in surgery and were
likely to touch blood, they were not allowed to intermingle with
other Brahmin families. This led to a lot of inbreeding within these
18 families and consequently, a decline in their fertility. Thus the
Ashtavaidyans came to be reduced to 8 families. Alathur,
Chirattamannu, Ilayidathu Thaikkadu, Pazhanellipurathu Thaikkadu,
Pulamanthol and Vayaskara are the six families of Ashtavaidyans
still practicing today.
Kerala Ayurveda Treatment
Reduction therapy has two parts called pacification and
purification. Pacification is done with herbs, fasting, exercise,
sunbathing and exposure to wind. Purification is a special form of
therapy for elimination of the disease causing humors. The power of
Ayurvedic elimination therapy is its system for guiding the toxins
to their sites for elimination. It consist of five parts - The
pancha karmas - cleaning enemas, nasal medication, Purgation, Emesis
and blood letting. All these require preliminary Ayurvedic practises
of oleation and sweating. Kerala a southern state of India, has
developed its own Ayurvedic treatment modalities like Dhara,
pizhichil, Navarakizhi, Elakizhi, Sirovasthi, Thalapothichil etc.
which are highly effective in a number of diseases which include
Motor neuron diseases, Arthritis of various kinds, skin diseases,
heart diseases, peptic ulcer, Asthama, Peripheral vascular diseases
and Gynecological disorders.
Ayurvedic pharmacology is based upon the concepts of rasa, veerya
and vipaka. A vast variety of plants, metals, minerals, animals,
birds and even mud and sand are used as medicines in Ayurveda.
Knowledge about Ayurvedic type of medicine is divided into eight
branches. The branches are 1. Kaya chikilsa (general medicine), 2.
Shalya (surgery), 3. Shalakya (ENT and Ophthalmology), 4. Graha
(Psychotherapy), 5. Damshitra (toxicology), 6. Bala (Pediatrics and
Gynecology), 7. Jara (rejuvenation) and 8. Vrishya (Aphrodisiacs).
Of the above the seventh one, that is rejuvenation therapy is a
unique method which Ayurveda performs. Until death our body is
engaged in a continuous struggle against the aging process. Hence
the body is called Shareeram - something that degenerates.
Nilayoram Ayurvedic Resorts offers traditional and authentic
treatments, with resident doctor, Masseurs, visiting Ayurvedic
doctors who are specialists and experts in various fields of
Ayurveda with Yoga
Ayurveda and yoga are sister Vedic sciences that
have been united for thousands of years for the sake of healing
body, mind, and consciousness. Generally speaking, Ayurveda deals
more with the health of the body, while yoga deals with purifying
the mind and consciousness, but in reality they complement and
embrace each other.
The ancient rishis (seers) were the original
masters of all Vedic sciences. They understood that good health is a
great asset on the path toward Self-realization. If the body is
neglected it can easily become an obstacle to spiritual practice.
Anyone who has practiced meditation for any length of time would
agree to how difficult it can be to sit still for long periods of
time without feeling discomfort and fatigue. Both yoga and Ayurveda
are mutually supportive and offer many ways to prevent and heal
various disorders as well as to cleanse and rejuvenate the body.
Besides sharing a philosophical foundation, both
systems have many similarities in relation to attitude, nutrition,
diet, hygiene, exercise, cleansing practices, as well as spiritual
practices. Traditionally, a student of yoga would first live close
to and serve the guru for many years, during which time he would
learn healthy habits. The basic Ayurvedic principles for health and
longevity were past on in the lineage in oral form to serve as a
foundation for a life of sadhana (spiritual practice).
Nowadays, the teachings of yoga are easily
available to all, and whether prepared or not we can leap headlong
into its practice. This has its blessings, in the sense that more
people can be turned on to the teachings, although much is often
lost without the parampara, or close guidance at the feet of an
accomplished master. With this in mind, modern yoga practitioners
would most certainly benefit from a basic knowledge of Ayurveda to
help establish a healthy daily routine and adjust their practice
according to the constitution, dosha imbalance, season, and so on,
to prevent disease and promote longevity.
First, let’s take a look at the similarities
between yoga and Ayurveda:
* Both are ancient Vedic teachings. Yoga
originates in the Yajur Veda, while Ayurveda originates in the
Atharva Veda and Rig Veda.
* Both recognize that keeping the body healthy is
vital for fulfilling the four aims of life: Dharma (duty), Artha
(wealth), Kama (desire), and Moksha (liberation).
* Both recognize that the balance of doshas
(humors), dhatus (tissues), and malas (waste products) is essential
for maintaining good health.
* Both share virtually the same metaphysical
anatomy and physiology, which consists of 72,000 nadis (subtle
channels), 7 main chakras (energy centers), 5 bodily sheaths, and
the Kundalini Shakti (energy).
* Both advocate the use of diet, herbs, asana,
pranayama, meditation, mantra, astrology, prayer, puja, and rituals
for healing the entire being.
* Both encourage physical health as a good
foundation for mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being.
* Both share the same view on psychology.
Ayurveda embraces all six of the main schools of philosophy
including the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and Vedanta (a non-dual
philosophical and spiritual path). They both understand that the
attachment to the body-mind complex is the root cause of all
suffering and that the ultimate state of health is experienced when
we abide in our true nature, which is total peace, regardless of the
state of the physical body.
* Both use cleansing methods for the body, all of
which encourage the removal of waste products and toxins through
their natural routes of elimination. Ayurveda has panchakarma (five
cleansing actions) and yoga uses Shat Karma (six purification
Ayurvedic approach to asana practice
The use of asana, pranayama, and meditation for
healing is known as Yoga Chikitsa, or Yoga Therapy and has been used
for thousands of years by Ayurvedic and yogic adepts. In Yoga
Chikitsa, a group of yogic exercises are chosen that will best
support the individual and are practiced daily. This can be done
over an extended period of time in conjunction with an Ayurvedic
regime and herbal and dietary therapies. Yoga Chikitsa also plays an
integral role in the Ayurvedic cleansing and rejuvenation process
known as panchakarma.
For a well balanced personal yoga practice, it is
important to take into consideration the individual’s body
structure, prakruti (original constitution), and vikruti (present
constitutional imbalance). The following are general recommendations
according to the predominant dosha.
Vata predominant individuals should remember to
focus on calming, grounding, stillness, strengthening, and balancing
while doing their practice.
Precautions for vata:
* Vinyasa or flow styles of yoga tend to move too
quickly from one pose to the next and can aggravate the hyper-mobile
quality of vata over time. Flow sequences can be made to be more
vata pacifying if they are not excessively long, the length of time
poses are held is extended, and transitions are done slowly and
* Those with lower back problems may find that
bending the knees in standing forward bends can prevent discomfort.
* Back bends should be done slowly, carefully and
within one's own limits.
Pitta individuals should maintain a calm, cool,
and relaxed intention while doing asanas. Pitta types may benefit
from trying to cultivate an attitude of forgiveness, and of
surrendering or offering the fruits of their practice to the divine
of to those in need of positive healing energy. Because asana
practice tends to generate heat in the body, it is best to do them
at cooling times of the day, such as dawn or dusk. Also, it is
useful to place some emphasis on poses that help to release excess
heat from the body, such as poses that compress the solar plexus and
poses that open the chest like.
Kapha types tend to be sedentary and often
dislike vigorous exercise. For this reason, their practice should be
energetic, warming, lightening, and stimulating, providing they are
physically capable. Vinyasa or flow style yoga is good for kapha
because it is dynamic and moves quickly from one pose to the next,
it induces sweating and gets the heart pumping.
Yoga poses that address specific doshic problems
can be easily added to an Ayurvedic regime and integrated into an
existing yoga routine, or they can be organized as a small session
with the help of an Ayurvedic clinician who knows each individual
case well and can help set up a well balanced program according to
the needs of each client.
Ayurveda also offers Yoga Chikitsa, or Yoga
Therapy, for specific doshic disorders. It is advised to consult an
Ayurvedic practitioner for an individualized regime.
Ayurvedic Approach to Pranayama (breathing
The ultimate goal of pranayama is to calm the
mind and prepare it for meditation. It also has a therapeutic effect
on the physical body as well. It is not essential to do a pranayama
practice according to dosha, but knowing its effects on the body is
a valuable tool for management of the doshas. Below is a general
list of pranayama and bandha exercises according to dosha.
Vata: Nadi Shodhana, Kapala Bhati, Agnisara
Dhauti, Ujjayi, Tri Bandha, Maha Mudra.
Pitta: Sheetali or Sitkari, Nadi shodhana.
Kapha: Bastrika, Agnisara Dhauti, Kapala Bhati,
Ashvini Mudra (contracting and releasing Mula Bandha), Ashvini Mudra,
Ujjayi, Tri Bandha, Maha Mudra.
Furthermore, the Four Purifications taught in our
workshops is an ancient method from the Ashtanga Yoga for purifying
the gross and subtle body in order to prepare it for more advanced
practices. They are tridoshic and safe for everyone, providing they
are performed correctly.
Meditation According to Dosha.
These spiritual paths and their meditation
techniques can be practiced by anyone, regardless of their prakruti.
This list is only intended to give an idea on how dosha can support
or influence one’s spiritual practice. Many traditions of yoga blend
various aspects of the paths listed here.
* Vata: Kriya Yoga or Ashtanga Yoga and other
structured techniques help to keep vata stabilized and focused.
* Pitta: Jnana Yoga and Vedanta are good for
pitta types because they often have sharp intellects and have a keen
interest in self-study (Atma-vichara).
* Kapha: Bhakti yoga is natural for kapha types
because they are often loving and devotional by nature.
Ayurvedic and Yogic Diet.
Ayurveda is more concerned with food being
constitutionally balanced, while Yoga promotes a diet that is
sattwic (light and pure). A combination of both aspects is the best
choice for a yogi or anyone wanting to make real progress on a
* According to dosha.
* Primarily vegetarian (meat is used as medicine,
mainly for extreme deficiencies).
* Primarily cooked (raw food in moderation,
especially for vata types).
* Containing six tastes.
* Sattwic vegetarian diet.
* Easy to digest.
* Simple meals (to limit desire).
* Both cooked and raw.
* Foods recommended in the Hatha Yoga Pradipika
consist of rejuvenating substances such as wheat, whole grain, white
basmati, corn, raw milk, raw sugar, butter, ghee, honey, dried
ginger, mung beans, pure water, vegetables.
* Fruits, roots and nuts.
* Avoiding excessive hot, sour, salty, fermented,
and fried foods.
* Avoiding tamasic (dulling) foods like meat,
onions, garlic and mushrooms as a regular part of the daily diet.
Cleansing in Yoga and Ayurveda.
Ayurveda and Yoga both emphasize cleansing of the
body for health and support of spiritual practices. Their methods
are similar and work by expelling excess dosha and ama, or toxins,
using the body's natural routes of elimination.
The yogic method is known in the Ashtanga
tradition as Shat Karma, or six cleansing measures. These are:
1. Neti (nasal cleansing):
Jala neti (salt water flushing of the sinuses).
Sutra neti (nasal cleaning with string).
2. Dhauti (washing the GI tract).
Teeth, tongue, eyes, ears and forehead.
Vamana Dhauti (vomiting salt water).
Vastra Dhauti (washing with a cloth).
Varisara Dhauti (washing with water for purgation).
3. Basti (enema).
4. Trataka (forehead wash, gazing into a candle flame).
5. Nauli (intestinal washing, abdominal rolling).
6. Kapala Bhati (skull shining).
The Ayurvedic method for cleansing and
rejuvenation is known as panchakarma (pancha karma), or five
cleansing actions. This program is usually done for a week or two,
but can also be done for longer periods depending on the case. The
five actions of this method are:
1. Basti (Enema).
2. Nasya (Nasal application of herbs and herbal oils).
3. Vamana (Therapeutic vomiting).
4. Virechana (Purgation).
5. Rakta Moksha (Blood letting).
It is obvious that Ayurveda and yoga not only
complement each other. Both sciences actually embrace each other as
they share similarities and fundamental principles on many levels.
Ayurveda and yoga should go hand in hand if we want to achieve
optimal health, peace, and longevity.
Ayurveda with Meditation
Meditation is a continuous flow of perception or thought, just
like the flow of water in a river." A practice wherein there is
constant observation of the mind, meditation brings awareness,
harmony and natural order into life. It helps you dig deep into your
inner self to discover the wisdom and tranquility that lie within.
The basic points to be
kept in mind in practicing meditation are :
Have a special place and specific
time for meditation. Try doing it daily.
Choose a time when your mind is not
clouded with worries.
Sit up straight with your back, neck
and head in one line. Facing north or east.
Condition your mind such so as to remain quiet for the duration of
your meditation session.
Regulate your breathing. Start with 5 minutes of deep breathing.
Then gradually slow it down.
Follow a rhythmic breathing pattern -
inhale and exhale.
Initially let your mind wander. It grows more restless if you
force to concentrate.
Then slowly bring it to rest on the
focal point of your choice.
Hold your object of concentration at
this focal point throughout your session.
Meditation happens when you reach a state of pure thought. Even
while retaining an awareness of duel self.
Followed diligently you will soon be able to attain a
Tips on Concentration
At the outset, it is hard to keep
your attention to keep focussed on one object.
So it is better to start off by
limiting your field of concentration to a category of objects.
Choose your objects with care e.g.
any four flowers, fruits, trees...etc. You must feel at ease with
what you choose.
After concentrating on one, you can
move on to the next, if & when your mind starts wandering.
This style of meditative exercise will
help you control your mind down to a finer focus, teaching you the
principle of single point concentration
The following are some of the principle
theories and practices of Ayurveda.
Ayurveda is divided into eight parts.
Hence it is also known as Ashtanga ayurveda.
These are as follows: Kaya, Bal, Graha, Urdhwa, Shalya, Dhanstra,
1. Kaya: The part of ayurveda which mainly related with diseases
related with body, related with digestion.
2.Bala: It is related with the paediatric age group. It is the
treatment for the proper growth and diseases of children.
3.Graha: It deals with stars and planets and other mental disorders.
4.Urdhwa: The diseases of upper part of the body above the neck.
This part is also known as Shalakyatantra. In this part, disorders
of ear, nose, throat, eyes, and oral cavity are considered.
5.Shalya: This is surgical branch of Ayurveda which is well
developed by Sushrut.
6.Dhanstra: It is related to the tooth where animal bites, poisoning
and its treatment is considered.
7.Jara: It is the branch related to geriatrics. It deals with
treatment to avoid old age.
8.Vrushya: It is the branch related with healthy sex life and
treatment related to complaints about intercourse etc.
Prakruti: At the time of conception, the particular dosha
dominating is the prakruti of that individual.According to
individuals prakruti, he or she is prone to some types of disease.
To cure those disorders, some hints related to day to day life "dincharya"
and seasonal behavior "Rutucharya"are given.
Panch Mahabhoot Siddhanta: The whole body is considered to be
made up of five basic elements such as Prithvi, Aap, Tepa, Vayu and
Aakash .When there is disturbance in dosha-dhatu-mala, the
individual suffers from disease. Hence they should be treated
The treatment part includes Shodhan and Shaman. In Shodhan, the
doshas are expelled out of the body with the help of medicines and
in Shaman , doshas are suppressed in the body. Shodhan includes five
ways of cleansing named as Pancha karma. It includes;
Nasya: medicine administered by nostrils.
Raktamokshan: letting out blood,
Basti: medicated material administered through anus.
Prakruti - The Unique Genetic Code of an Individual
Everyone knows that there are no two fingerprints alike. No two
voice modulations and no two genetic codes are exactly alike. What
makes anyone think we all have the same liver, lungs, kidneys, or
anything else the same as the next person. Therefore to propose that
we all eat the same foods, take the same drugs when we are ill, or
perform the same exercise is more than ludicrous. It is
unscientific! Ayurveda uses a system of historical analysis and
physical examination done almost entirely by observation (with the
exception of pulse reading), to ascertain one's original nature and
A diet and health plan are given to the individual according to the
needs to correct the imbalance. The basis for all other concepts in
Ayurveda is Sankhya (the analytical study of the elements that
comprise the universe). Although the modern physicist would
delineate well over one hundred elements, Sankhya states there are
twenty-four, of which five are the foundation of the gross world:
Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Ether.
These five elements, when joined in different combinations, make up
the three "doshas" or "biological modes" which are the "Prakruti" or
nature of an individual and the nature of all things.
The combination of air and ether gives us Vata or the Kinetic
Biological Mode. Vata is that which is electric in the body and
causes all movement in and out of the system (breathing, urination,
defecation, menstruation, etc.)
The combination of fire and water gives us Pitta or the
Transformative Biological Mode. Pitta is that which mutates or
transforms the outside elements of the macrocosm into the inside
elements of the body (the microcosm). Pitta governs the digestion of
physical, mental, and emotional elements.
Finally, the combination of earth and water gives us Kapha or
the Structive Biological mode. Kapha is that which makes for both
lubrication (mucus, synovial fluid) and structure (bones, muscles,
fat, joints, etc).
Meaning of Ayurveda
system of self-care that originated in India more than 5000 years
ago, Ayurveda is becoming very popular all over the world, with
hundreds of healers incorporating it into their practices and
thousands of people using its well-tried principles and therapies to
improve their well-being.
The Vedic word ayurveda has two root words--ayu and veda. Every root
word in the Vedic tradition has its own definition--thus, ayu has
its own definition and so does veda. Literally and concisely, ayu
means "life" and ved means "science." According to this translation,
ayurveda means "the science of life." But the Vedic texts expand on
these definitions to offer us a more complete understanding, and our
ayurvedic expert Vaidya Rama Kant Mishra has explained some of these
What is the real meaning of ayu or life according to the fundamental
principles of ayurveda? Sharirendriya sattwa atma samyogo ayuhu,
goes one verse. Sharir means physical body; indriya means senses.
Sattwa refers to the combination of mind and heart--overall
psychological strength, and atma means soul or spirit. When all of
these--body, senses, heart, mind and spirit--are in proper balance
and function in a harmonious, coordinated manner, that is true
life--"the living body."
Veda means science: not a science that changes its theories and its
findings every few years but ageless, eternal knowledge built on
siddhantas, fundamental unchanging principles. Veda refers to guided
knowledge: it is not just theory, but also a roadmap for how to
derive practical benefit from the knowledge.
A longer definition of ayurveda
Another longer definition of ayurveda goes: ayurhitahitamvyadhe
nidaanamshamanam thathaa vidyate yatra vidhwadhihi tatra ayurveda
uchyate. This verse takes us to a deeper level to understand what
Ayurveda provides us with a complete understanding of what is
life-sustaining and what is not, not just for the physical body, but
also our mind, heart, senses and spirit. This includes descriptions
of the kind of diet, lifestyle and behavior that is optimal for
well-being, the ideal environment, and the herbal rasayanas that are
good or bad for each of these aspects of health. There is great
detail on each of these modalities--what to eat, when to eat and how
to eat are a part of dietary recommendations, for example. The texts
also include recommendations for nurturing relationships and living
as part of the human community.
If an individual does not have this knowledge or has the knowledge
but does not implement the knowledge, then, say the texts, the
person becomes susceptible to imbalance and disorders
History of Ayurveda
years ago in the magnificent Himalayas, one of the greatest sages of
India, Srila Vyasadeva wrote down the Vedas for the first time, this
included a branch which is called Ayurveda: "The science of Life" (Ayur
means life and Veda means science).
The Vedas came from an oral
tradition that reached back into antiquity. Srila Vyasadev entrusted
the original copies of the texts with his most erudite and
enlightened disciples, who, along with other great sages,
inaugurated a very long sacrificial ceremony for hundreds of years
for the purification and blessings of the entire world. Remember
people lived for one to two thousand years back then. During that
time, they studied and discussed these ancient texts with their own
disciples, who wrote commentaries, and expanded and developed these
original and eternal truths without ever altering them.
During the years
after the conclusion of this sacrifice, copies of this perfect Vedic
texts were placed in various temples and libraries throughout India.
They were written down in the original Sanskrit language for the
benefit of the general population. (Sanskrit is the father of Latin
and most of the world languages).
As far as the science of life
was concerned - Ayurveda - volumes of wisdom poured forth like the
rains during the monsoon season. Beside Vyasadeva's information
about hundreds of herbal drugs in the Vedas, there were descriptions
later on, by other sages like Sushruta, Charaka, etc. on how to
perform prosthetic surgery to replace limbs, cosmetic surgery on the
nose and elsewhere, caesarean section, and even brain surgery!
Everything was described in
great detail and archaeological research has uncovered evidence that
proves that some of these operations were performed successfully
between 3,000 and 5,000 years ago. The great sage Charaka has given
information in Ayurveda about the development of the child within
the womb week by week, month by month, limb by limb, from conception
to birth, that equals our modern medical texts in accuracy.
There is information about
atomic energy, gynecology, pediatrics, surgery, anatomy, herbal
drugs, Ayurvedic dieting and nutrition. All are described in the
most simple and profound manner so as to make it easy enough for any
person to have a basic working knowledge of this great science of
life - Ayurveda. I know this sounds incredible and you may be
wondering, "How is it possible to have one system embrace all
systems" How would it be applied? The answer is simple. The first
step is to ascertain the individual's "Biological Mode" , and than
to treat the person accordingly.
Principles of Ayurveda
ayurvedic philosophy an individual bundle of `spirit’, desirious of
expressing itself, uses subjective consciousness or Satwa
to manifest sense organs and a mind. Spirit and mind then project
themselves into a physical body, created from the five (Pancha)
great (maha) eternal elements (bhutas) –
together called the Panchamahabhutas – which arise
from Tamas. The sense organs then using Rajas
to project from the body into the external world to experience their
objects. The body becoming the mind’s vehicle, its physical
instrument for sense gratification.
combine into "tridoshas" or bioenergetic forces that
govern and determine our health or physical condition. While the
three gunas (Rajas or activity,
Tamas or inertia and Satwa, which balances the
first two) or psychic forces determine our mental and spiritual
health. Ayurveda is thus a holistic system of health
care that teaches us to balance these energies in order to achieve
optimum health and well being.
Diagnosis in Ayurveda
medicine names three main causes of disease – 'overuse', 'disuse' or
'misuse’ of faculties; 'errors in judgement'; and influence of
seasonal changes. According to Ayurveda all human
diseases can be classified into the seven broad categories, namely :
1. Genetic (Adibalapravritta)
ailments as obstinate skin diseases, hemorrhoids, diabetes,
tuberculosis and asthma that arise primarily due to defects in the
sperm (sukra) of the father – when it is called
pitrija or the ovum (sonita) of the
mother – when it is termed matrja.
abnormal behaviour, addiction of any type and stressful situations
affect the reproductive elements of both the male and female,
resulting in a defective foetus.
2. Congenital (Janmabalapravritta)
due to nutritional disorder (rasakrita) and
unfulfilled cravings of the mother during pregnancy (dauhrdya)
If diet and / or
conduct of the mother aggravates vata, the foetus
might end up with deformities as kyphosis (hunchback), blindness
and dwarfism; increased pitta may cause alopecia and
yellowish pigmentation of skin; and enhanced kapha
might result in albinism.
3. Constitutional (Doshabalapravritta)
Arise out of any
dietary or behavioural disturbance brought about by an imbalance
in any one of the three vital physical energies (Tridoshas)
or the three vital mental energies (Trigunas).
constitutional disorders are of two types : somatic (Sharirika)
& psychic (Manasika).
4. Traumatic (Sanghatabalapravritta)
trauma causing experience – external or internal – leads to this.
External trauma is
induced by injuries inflicted by sharp instruments and bites of
animals or venomous insects.
overstrain lead to internal trauma.
5. Seasonal (Klabalapravritta)
Brought about by
changes in the nuances of seasonality.
Sometimes the body
fails to adjust itself to the sudden and abnormal climatic changes
– extreme cold might lead to frostbite and rheumatic disease.
While extreme heat may cause sunstroke or fever.
6. Infectious and
Either born out of
natural calamities as lightning, earthquakes, floods and the
invisible, malignant forces of nature.
through sexual & physical intimacy and sharing of food, plates,
bed, clothes, towels and cosmetics with effected friends &
Or as a result of
7. Natural (Swabhavbalapravritta)
healthiest of people are struck by hunger, thirst, sleep, death or
Brought about by
functional, organic and natural changes in the body.
physicians try to assess the symptoms of these diseases as much as
the nature of ailment and its root causes (nidana).
This is of utmost importance in ensuring correct choice of remedial
& preventive measures for treatment of the disease. For otherwise,
even after therapy, one might not get the desired response and there
would remain a chance of recurrence.
The early signs and
symptoms (purvaroopa) provide useful warnings and the
opportunity for taking necessary action before a disease can assume
dangerous magnitudes. The main signs and symptoms (roopa)
reflect the true nature and intensity of the disease. Another oft
used method of diagnosis is exploratory therapy (upasaya)
which uses diet, medicines and routines to detect diseases otherwise
difficult to diagnose. Acting either against the cause of disease or
the disease itself or producing relief. For example a swelling that
is alleviated by an oily & hot massage, is obviously caused by an
imbalance of vata.
To confirm, evaluate and treat a
disease, physicians need to perform clinical examinations of
patients – wherein textual knowledge (aptopadesa), direct perception
(pratyaksha) and inference (anumana) are all very important
components. The examination of patients can be carried out in the
fold (Bidha) Examination (Pariksha)
Covers a general examination of the
- Visual observation (Darshan)
- Tactile perception (Sparsha)
- Questioning (Prashna)
Ayurveda is a holistic system of
healing which evolved among the Brahmin sages of ancient India some
3000-5000 years ago. There are several aspects of this system of
medicine which distinguish it from other approaches to health care:
1. It focuses on establishing and
maintaining balance of the life energies within us, rather than
focusing on individual symptoms.
2. It recognizes the unique
constitutional differences of all individuals and therefore
recommends different regimens for different types of people.
Although two people may appear to have the same outward symptoms,
their energetic constitutions may be very different and therefore
call for very different remedies.
3. Ayurveda is a complete medical
system which recognizes that ultimately all intelligence and
wisdom flows from one Absolute source (Paramatman). Health
manifests by the grace of the Absolute acting through the laws of
Nature (Prakriti). Ayurveda assists Nature by promoting harmony
between the individual and Nature by living a life of balance
according to her laws.
4. Ayurveda describes three
fundamental universal energies which regulate all natural
processes on both the macrocosmic and microcosmic levels. That is,
the same energies which produce effects in the various galaxies
and star systems are operating at the level of the human
physiology--in your own physiology. These three universal energies
are known as the Tridosha.
5. Finally, the ancient Ayurvedic
physicians realized the need for preserving the alliance of the
mind and body and offers mankind tools for remembering and
nurturing the subtler aspects of our humanity. Ayurveda seeks to
heal the fragmentation and disorder of the mind-body complex and
restore wholeness and harmony to all people.
Scope Of Ayurvedic Medicine
Classically, Ayurvedic Medicine was
conceptualized and practiced as eight major clinical subspecialties
of medicine in addition to numerous adjunctive specialties. The
eight major subspecialties continue to be taught today and they
Internal Medicine (Kayachikitsa)
General Surgery (Shalya Tantra)
Pediatrics and Obstetric/Gynecology (Kaumarabhrtya)
Toxicology (Agada Tantra)
Nutrition, Detoxification and
Rejuvenation (Rasayana Tantra)
Fertility and Virility (Vajikarana)
For every disease, there is information
about: definition, etiology, prodrome, clinical symptoms,
pathophysiology, prognosis, principles of treatment, medicines,
diet, lifestyle recommendations, and even etymology. This approach
is strikingly similar to that of modern medicine and even more
Over the last century, Ayurvedic
Medicine has experienced a rebirth and has continued to evolve its
holistic approach to health in accordance with modern needs and
scientific advances of the day. Today, modern Ayurveda also
Kulam Svastyam Kutumbakam:
Principles of Preventative Healthcare For the Entire Family
Sangakara Chikitsa: Treatment of
Addictions. Includes strategies for defeating addictions to
alcohol, tobacco, sexual behavior, and food.
Panchakarma Chikitsa: Purification
and Rejuvenation Treatments. Prescribed with respect to one's
individual nature, work, social circumstance, age, and season.
Sthaulya Chikitsa: This
discipline covers practical and effective approaches to maintain a
healthy weight through constitutionally-determined diet, exercise,
herbs, spices, teas, breathing, and psychological aids.
Vatavyadhi Chikitsa: Specific
treatment plans for the diseases of Vata origin which affect the
musculoskeletal system and nervous system (joints, bones, muscles,
nerves) Examples include but are not limited to: osteoarthritis,
osteoporosis, osteopenia, multiple sclerosis, spondylosis,
sciatica, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue syndrome.
Promotion of self-healing and resistance to disease (i.e.
immunity) as per your age, sex, occupation, nature, daily routine,
medical history, mental status, season, and region.
Vajikarana: Specific remedies
for Male infertility and impotence as well as Female infertility.
Saundarya Sadhana: Beauty and
cosmetic treatments for men and women, including skin, hair, eyes,
posture, body odor, and general appearance
Amalaki* is used to rebuild and maintain new tissues
and increases red blood cell count. It is considered helpful in
cleansing the mouth, strengthening teeth, nourishing the bones
and is the highest natural source of vitamin C. It reduces pitta
without aggravating vata or kapha.It is a one of three herbs
used in triphala, the primary Ayurvedic tonic for maintaining
Arjuna* is a famous cardiac tonic used in Ayurveda for
a variety of heart conditions. Used to lower blood pressure and
heart rate. Traditionally given to support circulation and
oxygenation of all tissues. Often combined with ashwagandha,
brahmi and guggul in heart formulas.
Ashoka is used in Ayurveda as a tonic for the uterus
and is believed to help maintain proper function of the female
Ashwagandha* has been traditionally used for general
debility, sexual debility and nerve exhaustion. It also is said
to regenerate the hormonal system, promote healing of tissues,
and support sound sleep. It is considered the primary
adaptogenic Ayurvedic herb for its ability to build reserves for
handling stressful conditions.
Bacopa* assists in heightening mental acuity and
supports the body's ability to relax. It is used in formulas for
Bhringaraj* is considered helpful in premature graying
of hair, balding , alopecia, loss of teeth, enlargement of liver
or spleen, chronic hepatitis, anemia and skin diseases. It is a
rejuvenative for pitta. Also available in oil form.
Bibitaki* is used as a laxative to cleanse the bowels.
It is also used as a gargle for sore throats because of its
heating and soothing properties. It is a one of three herbs used
in triphala, the primary Ayurvedic tonic for maintaing health.
It is considered a powerful tonic for excess kapha.
Bitter Melon has been shown to regulate the body's
ability to process sugars by suppressing the neutral response to
the stimuli of sweet tastes. For control of blood sugar levels
also see shardunika ( gymnema) and chandraprabha.
Boswellia* has been used extensively in Ayurveda for
joint support. Along with its cousin guggul, it offers broad
health and immunomodulating benefits for arthritis sufferers.
Brahmi* has been traditionally used for nervous
disorders, epilepsy, senility, premature aging, hair loss,
obstinate skin conditions and venereal diseases. It is
considered the primary Ayurvedic nerve and cardiac tonic. It
pacifies high vata or pitta. Also available in oil form.
Chyavanprash is a famous herbal jam made from amalaki
fruit, one of the highest sources of vitamin C. It is fortified
with over 20 herbs to rejuvenate and strengthen the immune
Gokshura* is a rejuvenating herb used in Ayurveda to
support proper function of the urinary tract and prostate.
Guduchi* is a considered a bitter tonic and powerful
immuno-modulator. It is regarded as a blood purifier and liver
protector. It is considered helpful in eye disorders and
promotes mental clarity. It balances high pitta conditions.
Guggul (aka guggulu)* A gum resin, historically used
for its antiseptic and deep penetrating actions in the treatment
of elevated blood cholesterol and arthritis. Often used as a
carrier and combined with other herbs to treat specfic
conditions (see Kaishore Guggulu, Yograj Guggulu, Goksuradi
Guggulu and Triphala Guggulu).
Gymnema* is commonly referred to as "Gurmar, the
destroyer of sugar". It is traditionally used in formulas to
control blood sugar levels in the body.
Haritaki* is used for coughs, asthma, abdominal
distention, tumors and itching. It is a one of three herbs used
in triphala, the primary Ayurvedic tonic for maintaing health.
It is a rejuvenative for vata.
Kutki* a bitter and pungent herb used by Ayurvedic
practitioners to support proper function of the liver and
Holy Basil offers a wide rage of health benefits,
principally supporting the respiratory system.
Manjista* is considered one of the best blood
purifying herbs in Ayurveda. It is said to cool and detoxify the
blood, dissolve obstructions in blood flow, and clear stagnant
blood from the system. It clears high pitta from the system.
Neem* is considered one of the best healing and
disinfectant agents for skin diseases and anti-inflamatory for
joint and muscle pain.It balances high pitta conditions. Also
available in oil form.
Shatavari* is traditionally used to support the female
organs, prevent sexual debility, help menopausal conditions,
stomach ulcers, inflamation and chronic fevers. It is also a
primary rejuvenative for pitta
Abhyanga: oil masssage.
Acne: An inflammatory
eruption occurring usually on the face and neck.
Agni: digestive fire,
synonymous with properly balanced cell metabolism in Western
Ajna chakra: Centre of
command,the" third eye".
Akasha: Ether or space.
Alambusha nadi: Yogic nadi,
Alochaka pitta: Form of pitta
Ama: residual impurities deposited in the cells as the result
of improper digestion. Also mental ama, impure or negative thoughts
Anaemia: A below-normal level
in the number of red blood cells.
Analgesic: A substance that
Annamaya kosha: Physical or
Apana vayu: Downward moving
Arishta: Symptom suggestive
Aromatic: Taste which
stimulates the gastrointestinal tract.
Artava: Menstrual Blood.
Artavaha srotas :
Arthritis: An inflammatory
condition of the joints.
Asana: Posture, third stage
Ascites: An excessive
accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity.
Ashvini mudra: Yogic practise
of contracting anal sphinctor muscles.
Asthidhara kala: Special
membrane for bone.
Asthma: A respiratory
disorder in which there is breathlessness wheezing and cough (dry or
with mucus expectoration).
Atrophy: A wasting or
diminution of size or physiological activity of a part of the body.
Attributes: The inherent
qualities or properties of a substance.
Avalambaka Kapha: Form of
Kapha in chest.
Avasthapaka: Primary phase of
Basti : enema
Betel leaf: A leaf eaten
after a meal to assist digestion
Bhajani: A mixture of roasted
Bhajiyas: Fried items of
onion and other vegetables
Bharta: A mashed preparation
Bhasma: Residue after
Bhutagni : digestive fire
Bile: A bitter fluid secreted
by the liver which flows into the small intestine, which is stored
in the gallbladder. It helps to metabolize fat
Chandan: Sandalwood (Santalum
A type of Indian bread
Charak: Great Ayurvedic
profounder who has written one of the classic Ayurvedic text Charak
Charaka samhita: One of the
oldest Ayurvedic text
Cholesterol: A fatty
substance in crystalized form found in all animal fats, oils, milk,
egg yolks, bile, blood, brain tissue, liver, kidney and adrenal
Churna: Powder of medicine
Chyavanprash: A formualtion
based on honey, amla and other 45 ingredients.
Colitis: A chronic disease
characterized by the inflamation of colon
Compress: A pad of folded
linen applied so as to create pressure upon exterior parts of the
Conjunctivitis: A painful and
infectious illness in the eyes which makes them red and makes the
eyelids swollen and sticky
Cosmic energy: The
all-pervading energy in the universe
Dermatitis: An inflammatory
condition of the skin. characterized by redness. pain and itching
Dhatu: one of the body's
seven basic constituents
Diabetes: A clinical
condition characterized by the excessive secretion of urine and
increased blood-sugar level
Dinacharya: daily routine
Diuretic: A substance that
increases the secretion of urine
Dosha: three basic metabolic
principles connecting the mind and body and biological humour.
Dosha vaishmya: pathological
condition of dosha
Drava: type of attribute
Eczema: Acute or chronic skin
Emetic: Medicine that
Expectorant: A substance that
promotes the ejection of mucus.
Flora: Healthful bacteria
which are present in various parts of the body, list of plants of a
Fomentation: Treatment by
warm and moist application to skin
Gati : quality of the pulse
Gonorrhoea: A common venereal
disease most often affecting the genitourinary tract
Gout: Metabolic disease
marked by acute arthritis and inflammation of the joints
Grahani : Chronic diarrhoea,
malabsorption syndrome in the small intestine
Gulma : Any tumor, lump or
Guna: fundamental natural
quality (e.g., dry, moist, hot, cold, etc.). Also applied to sattva,
rajas, and tamas, the "three gunas"
Guru: type of attribute,
heavy, spiritual teacher, Grishma, Summer, Teacher
Halasana : Plough posture
Hath Yoga : Yoga of physical
Hemant: Early winter
Hemoptysis: Coughing up of
blood from the respiratory tract
Hemostatic: A substance that
checks the flow of blood
Hima : Type of attribute,
Hrid roga : Heart disease
Hives: Eruptions of very
itchy skin caused by an allergic substance
Jala neti : Yogic cleansing
of nasal passages by water
Japa : Repetation of mantras
Jatharagni : Digestive fire,
responsible for the digestion and transformation of food material
Jaundice : A condition
characterized by yellowness of the skin and elevated level of
Kapalabhati: Kriya and
pranayama that cleanses respiratory tract
Kapha:the dosha responsible
for bodily structure
Kathina: Type of attribute,
Katu: Pungent or spicy
Khara: Type of attribute,
rough to touch
Kleda: Subtle waste product
Kledaka kapha: form of kapha
Kuhu: Nadi in yoga
Kundalini: Potential energy
lying dormant at the base of the spine.
Kurma: Type of vata in yoga
Laghu: type of attribute,
Langhana: fasting, reducing
Leucoderma: Localized loss of
Leucorrhea: A condition that
causes a whitish, viscid discharge from the vagina and uterine
Lohita: second layer of skin
condition of the lymph nodes
Macrocosm: The universe
itself; a system regarded as an entity containing subsystems
Madhyama marga: Middle
pathway, (deep tissue)
Mahabhuta: Basic five
elements (space, air, fire, water and earth)
Mahamarma: One of the three
Majja: Nerve tissue and bone
Mala: Metabolic end-products
Malabsorption syndrome: A
condition in which there is no proper digestion, absorption and
assimilation of food in the gastro intestinal tract
Mamsadhatu: Muscle tissue
Manda: Type of attribute,
slow pachaka pitta, form of pitt chakra
Manomaya kosha: Mental sheath
Mantra: Sacred sounds
Manusmriti: Compendia, Marga
-pathway or tract
Marga: Path or tract
Marma: A junction point
between consciousness and matter or weak Vital points.
Matsyendrasana: Yoga posture
with spinal twist
Mayurasana: Yoga posture like
Meda: Fat tissue
Microcosm: A diminutive
representative world; a system more or less analogous to a much
Moong: A type of pulse
Mridu: Type of attribute,
Muladhara chakra: First
Mutravaha srotas: Urinary
Nadi pariksha: Pulse
Nadi vigyana: Pulse diagnosis
Nag: Type of vata in yoga
Nasya: Nasal administration
Nauli: Action like pitching
of boat in stormy sea
Nauli chalana: A process in
which the abdominal muscles are made to move vertically and
laterally in surging motion
Nidana: Etiological factor or
diagnosis of disease
Nidana panchaka: Five ways to
diagnose a disease
Nirama: Without ama or toxic
Ojas: The purest expression
of metabolism; the final end product of correct digestion and
assimilation of food
Om : Seed mantra
Palpation: The act of feeling
with the hand; the application of the fingers with light pressure to
the surface of the body for the purpose of determining the
consistancy of the parts beneath
Panchakrama: The five
cleansing (purification) methods to get rid of excess Doshas.
Papad: Made from dried
lentils; eaten fried or roasted
Parkinsonism: A neurologic
disorder characterized by tremors, muscle rigidity and slow
preperation of sulphur and mercury
Paschimotanasana: head to
knee yoga posture
Pavanamuktasana: knee to
chest yoga posture
Percussion: The act of
striking a bodily part with short, sharp blows as a diagnostic aid
that reveals the condition of that area of the body
contraction of smooth muscle that forces food through the digestive
Pharyngitis: Inflammation of
Physiognomy: The study of
Pichila: type of attribute,
Pingala: carries solar
energy, right nostril
Pippali: herb / Piper
Pitta: the dosha responsible
for metabolism (closely identified with agni, the body's vital heat)
Poorvakarma: Procedures done
Poultice: A soft moist
substance applied hot to the surface of the body for the purpose of
supplying heat and moisture
Pradhana: main, prominent
Pragya aparadh: the "mistake
of the intellect" (i.e., identifying with the part and losing the
Prajny aparadh: volitional
Prakriti: primal nature,
natural state, constitution
either to one's individual nature (body type) or to Nature as a
Prana: It is vital energy
(life-energy) which activates the body and mind. Prana is
responsible for the higher cerebral functions, the motor and sensory
activities. The prana located in the head is the vital prana, while
prana which is present in the cosmic air is nutrient prana. There is
a constant exchange of energy between vital prana and nutrient prana
through respiration. During inspiration, the nutrient prana enters
the system and nourishes the vital prana. During expiration, subtle
waste products are expelled.
Pranavaha srotas: respiratory
Pranayama : respiratory
exercise, also called "balanced breathing"
Prapaka: primary stage of
Prashama: alliviation of
Prithvi: element earth
Psoriasis: A disease in which
areas of skin turn red and are covered with small dry pieces of skin
Psychosomatic: Pertaining to
the mind-body relationship: an illness caused by anxiety and worry
Ptosis: An abnormal condition
of one or both upper eyelids in which the eyelid droops.
Purisha: stool, faeces
Purvarupa: predormal symptoms
Rajas: the intermediate
principle of energy among the three qualities of nature
Rajasic: having the nature of
(type of panchakarma)
Raktavaha srotas: circulatory
Ranjaka pitta: form of pitta
colouring the blood
Rasa: plasma, taste
Ayurvedic herbal or mineral preparation for longivity and
Rheumatism: Any of a large
number of inflammatory conditions of the joints, ligaments or
muscles, characterised by pain or limitation of movement
Rhinitis: Inflammation of the
mucus membrane of the nose
Rigveda: type of veda
Ruksha: type of attribute,
Sadhaka pitta: type of pitta
governing the brain
Sama: with ama or toxins
Samadhi: A state of
equilibrium; supreme joy and bliss
Samana vata: equalising form
of five vata types
between viliated dosha and dushya
Samsarga: duel vitiation of
Sandra: type of attribute,
Sattva: the higher principle
of harmony of three qualities of nature or trigunas
Scabies: A contagious skin
disease characterized by itching and peeling of the skin
Sciatica: Inflammation of the
sciatic nerve characterized by lower back pain which radiates down
Shakha: four limbs
Shakha marga: external
Shita: type of attribute,
Shlakshna: type of attribute,
Shleshaka: form of kapha
Shleshaka: form of kapha
Shukra: reproductive tissue
Shukradhara kala: special
membrane for reproductive system
Sira: blood vessel
Snehana: oleation therapy
Soma: bliss of pleasure,
principle at work behind the mind and senses
Spondylosis: A condition of
the spine characterized by fixation or stiffness of a vertebral
localisation, stage of pathogenesis
Sthira: type of attribute,
Sthoola: type of attribute,
Sukshma: type of attribute,
Surya Namaskara: the "sun
Sushruta: author of Sushruta
Samhita, ancient Ayurvedic surgeon
Swedavaha srotas: system for
Syphilis: A venereal
infection transmitted through sexual contact
Tamaka shwasa: bronchial
Tamas: the lower principle of
inertia of omni substances
Tamasic: having the nature of
Tapas: self discipline
Tarpaka: form of kapha
governing brain and nerves
Teja: premordial element,
Tejas: mental fire
Tikshna: form of attribute,
Trataka: steady gazing
Tridosha: The three bodily
organizations -Vata (air). pitta (fire) and Kapha (water) -which
govern the psychosomatic activity of daily living
Udakavaha srotas: -system of
Udanavata: upward moving type
offshoots of tissues
Upashama: symptoms getting
relieved after treatment
Undhiya: A mixed vegetable
preparation favourite among the Gujaratis
Urticaria: A blood reaction
of the skin. marked by the transient appearance of smooth.
slightly-elevated patches which are redder or paler than the
surrounding skin. This condition often is attended by severe
Vamana: medicated emesis
Vasa: fact of the muscles
Vata: the dosha responsible
for all movement in the body, biological air humor.
Vata vyadhi: diseases due to
aggravation of vatas
Vataj: due to vata
Vayu: another name for vat
Vedas: ancient books of
knowledge presenting the spiritual signs of awareness
Vipaka: metabolised part of
drug, the after taste of food in the body
Yakrit : Liver
Yashasvati : Type of nadi in Yoga
Yoga: psycho physical practices aimed at self knowledge
principle of treatment in Ayurveda focuses on bringing back the
normalcy of functions of systems by various methods. The method is a
process of changing the condition through different steps and there
by establish the equilibrium of doshas (humours). In fact treatment
is directed to perform a well-planned re-arrangement in the subtle
plane according to Ayurveda.
There are eight divisions of treatments in Ayurveda
(1) Kaya chikitsa (General treatment)
(2) Bala chikitsa (Pediatrics)
(3) Urndhanga chikitsa (ENT & eye diseases treatment),
(4) Grahachikitsa (Psychiatry),
(5) Salya chikitsa (Surgical procedures),
(6) Visha chikitsa (Toxicology),
(7) Rasayana chikitsa (Geriatrics).
(8) Vajeekarana chikitsa (Aphrodisiac treatment).
Treatments includes various types of therapies like medicated oil
massage, preventive aspects like daily and seasonal regimens,
curative /curative purification process using herbal preparations
like juice of wet herbs, herbal pastes (kalka), kashayams (herbal
decotions) medicated oils, medicated butter and ghee preparation,
Arishtams (fermented preparations) etc.
Among the various therapies, Panchakarma (purification therapy) is
the specialty of Ayurveda treatments that consists of Snehana (oleation),
Swedana (sudation), Vamana (inducing emesis), Virechana (inducing
purgation), Nasya (medication through nostrils), Kashaya Vasti
(enema using medicated decoction) and Snehavasti (enema using
medicated oils). These treatments help cleanse the systems to
maintain perfect health. The inconsistency developed and lodged in
Dhatus (tissue spaces) due to the vitiation of doshas (humours) gets
eliminated by the panchakarma therapy.
Ayrvedic pharmacology is based on a sophisticated indigenous
knowledge category called ' DRAVYAGUNA SASTRA' consisting of the
study of a drug in relation to its Rasa (tastes), Guna (properties),
Veerya (potency), Vipaka (biotransformation) and Prabhava (special
Ayurveda takes into serious consideration the Prakruti (body
constitution- see chart), Agni (digestive fire), Ahara (food
habits), Ritu (seasonal changes) etc. while selecting the drug and
therapy for the particular disease. Ayurvedic pharmacology considers
the overall systemic effect of any plant in terns of its effect on
physiological balance (equilibrium of doshas), body tissues (dhatus)
and the excretory system (malas).
Beneficial Daily Routines
- Rise before the sunrise.
- Drink a full glass (8 oz.) of room temperature or warm water.
- Clean your face, mouth and nasal passages and gargle with salt
- Do some light yoga or stretching exercises.
- Meditate for 20 minutes.
- Take a walk or run for ½ hour, 3–4 times per week.
- Have a nutritional breakfast according to your body type.
- Have a relaxing or complete meal at lunchtime. 11–2 pm.
- Relax for ½ hour after lunch.
- Meditate in late afternoon before evening meal for 20 minutes.
- Eat dinner between 5:00 and 7:00 pm. This should not be a
- Allow two hours after your dinner before going to bed.
- Bedtime 10:00–11:00 pm.
- Give thanks.
Daily Ayurvedic Regimens
Our bodies naturally work on clearing excess toxins out of our
body during the nighttime hours. These toxins are deposited in our
colon and skin. That is why it is important to take care of personal
hygiene first thing in the morning. We must remove these toxins from
the body by bathing and eliminating to prevent them from backing up
and becoming reabsorbed by the body
Ayurveda delves deeper. Besides the skin texture, hair type and body
quality, Ayurveda lays accent on the way we move and carry
ourselves, the lifestyle we follow, the freshness we emanate etc.
Ayurveda does not see beauty as a cosmetic affair. Ayurveda calls
for self care and also development of positive routines and rituals
that will help bring out the best in us.
Empty Bowl Meditation
Sit comfortably and
quietly with palms up and open, placed on knees, like empty bowls.
Open the mouth slightly and touch the tongue to the roof of the
mouth, behind the front teeth. Pay attention to the breath. Let the
lungs breathe with no effort on your part. Breath is object of
awareness. Simply watch the movement of breath. As you are watching
the movement of your breath, pay attention to the tip of your nose.
Just be aware of the touch of air going into the nose. Cool air
going in, warm air coming out. Sit this way, quietly, observing
breath, for about 5 minutes.
After 5 minutes,
follow the breath. Go with the air into the nose, throat, heart,
diaphragm, deep down into the belly behind the belly button, where
you will experience a natural stop. Stay in this stop for a fraction
of a second, then follow the breath on exhalation, as it reverses
its course up from the belly behind the diaphragm, heart, throat,
out through the nose. and out of the body to about 9" in front of
the nose to a second stop.
The first stop is
behind the belly button, the second stop is outside the body in
space. At these two stops, breath stops. At these two stops, time
stops. Movement of breath is time. In these two stops, only
existence is present. In these two stops you are surrounded by peace
and love. In these stops, God is present. In these stops you become
like an empty bowl. The moment you become like an empty bowl, the
divine lips can touch you. God will seek you and pour benediction
into you. Let the lungs breathe and you become the empty bowl.
Practice this meditation for 15 minutes in the morning and in the
evening. As you practice this meditation, over the days, weeks,
months, you will find your time in the stops naturally prolonging
until eventually inner and outer will merge at the 3rd eye and
everything will happen within you.
You may also
practice this meditation in a prone position
Agni Tea Recipes
The first definition
of agni is the element of Fire, the second of the five elements in
the body. It also denotes the digestive fire which regulates
temperature, performs digestion, absorption, and assimilation of
ingested food, and transforms food into energy or consciousness.
Agni Tea is a
simple beverage that helps to regulate and stimulate your digestive
capacity, improving all the functions of digestive agni
Minced gihger root
2 Tbs. Sucanat or other sweetener
1 to 2 tsp. Rock salt
Bring all of the above ingredients to a boil.
Boil for 20 minutes.
Take the pot off the burner and cool for a few
Add the juice of 1/2 lime. Do not
boil the lime juice.
Pour into a thermos and enjoy throughout the
An Introduction to Panchakarma
Ayurveda treatment consists of four basic forms, namely - medicine
or drug therapy, pancha (five) karma (actions/ systems), dietary
regime and regulation of lifestyle. And works in two fundamental
ways - cure and prevention.
The preventive aspect of treatment is further subdivided into
swastha varta (personal hygiene) - consisting of dinacharya (daily
routine), ritucharya (seasonal corrections) and sadachara
(appropriate behaviour) - rasayana & vajikarana (rejuvenation &
virlification) and yoga. The curative aspect consists of three parts
antati parimaijana (internal medicine) - consisting of samsodhana
(internal purification through panchkarma) and samsamana (curative
action) - external medicine as massage, use of pastes & powders and
finally surgical treatment.
The deep cleansing process, unique to Ayurveda, that enables the
body to release excess doshas and toxins from its cells and expel
them is called Panchakarma, which basically denotes detoxification
or elimination of toxins from the body. Although the human body is
considered as a great, intelligent, natural healing system capable
of rejuvenating itself, the formation of toxins reduces that natural
capacity. It is then that Panchakarma plays a crucial role in that
Ayurveda & Astrology
Eternally fascinated by the uncertainty of the future, man has been
equally engrossed in various studies that allow a peek into the
same. Amongst the more significant ones is Astrology, a significant
branch of Ayurveda, that scientifically studies planetary movements
and their effect on human constitutions and lives.
Astrology is based on the concept that each planet is intrinsically
related to a specific body tissue and that the various planetary
movements and their positions in relation to time exert powerful
influences on your mind, body and consciousness, directly affecting
your physical and mental health. It is to be noted that sun, rahu &
ketu are nodal points exactly opposite each other and are given the
status of planets according to the Indian system of Astrology. They
are important indicators of spiritual and / or materialistic
A thorough understanding of Ayurveda
reveals that it is not merely a medical system dealing with physical
symptoms, but a wonderful science that teaches one to attain self
realization and attain a permanent state of joy and happiness. This
treatment system can cure even diseases for which modern medicine or
allopathy doesn't have remedies. For those who have recently been
introduced to Ayurveda, this section helps to build a strong base
for understanding Ayurveda in its original form.
And for those who have been studying Ayurveda for sometime and have
always wondered about its scope, this section provides the answers
they have been seeking. But this section is not the end. The entire
scope of Ayurveda is much wider and there is a lot more to be learnt
In ancient times, Ayurveda was taught orally by the guru to
his disciple, from one generation to the next. It was centuries
later that all this intellectual tradition got collated together
into written texts.
The comprehensive health solutions offered by Ayurveda has
made it popular all over the world. Unfortunately, Ayurveda too has
suffered because of modernization, commercialization and
materialization of its pure concepts.
This section tries to provide information on the original
Ayurvedic principles. These principles may prove a little difficult
to understand initially, but they are the key to understanding