What is Ayurveda?
The word Ayurveda is Sanskrit word and composed out of two parts. “Ayus” means Life, “Veda” means Knowledge, Wisdom, Science. Thus the term meaning can be translated as a “Science/Wisdom of Life”.
Ayurveda is the ancient science and art of human bodily and mental health. This ancient holistic medicine implies an emphasis on preventive approach to maintain balanced healthy state but has the second goal is to care of diseased person to help to return their healthy balance.
There are main concepts:
- Individualized approach to the person – each person has unique physical and psychic (mind-body) constitution.
- Ayurveda is integral study, considers and uses all the aspects of human being – gross physical body and subtle parts which are literally mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects.
- Personal responsibility and active deliberate participation of the individual in recovering and health maintenance.
- Methods of Ayurveda are natural (naturophatic), believing that besides gross components and actions of particular natural things whether it is water, food, herbs or herbal formulations, there is subtle vital energy behind them – Prana which brings special but significant effects and properties. In contrast, artificial chemically synthesized drugs and food are devoid of righteous subtle properties and can thus cause multiple side effects and even new diseases.
- It is cost-effective. As soon as you learn your own unique being and comprehend the concepts of Ayurveda you can use its methods to maintain the healthy balance though your whole life free of charge.
- It works.
“Science of Life” teaches us how to preserve health in wide sense and bring happiness and satisfaction in our lives.
Which tools does Ayurveda mostly rely on to return balance and preserve health?
Appropriate changes in life routines, lifestyle, diet, exercises, meditation, natural procedures of body works like oil massage, sauna, sweating etc. go first. As Ayurveda relies on integral, complex approach in most cases those methods are used all together. Then if those methods above are not enough in case of worse disbalance, special methods of fasting, cleansing, herbs intake are used.
Having a consultation with ayurvedic doctor or practitioner you would be able to recognize your natural balance (body-mind constitution), comprehend the causes of current disbalance and get advice on how to change your lifestyle, diet, routines, exercise etc. to address disorders. From that point, you are on the way to your health and better living. That is not going to be fast jump but rather slow but steady progress which completely depends on your own efforts. But the result is as strong and significant as the efforts invested. Besides the health improvement you will learn your own mind and body and will be able to control and master them for all your life.
To simplify there are three basic tools of health – proper movement, proper breathing, proper nourishment.
Proper movement – our body is made to live in movement (not in still sitting behind computer for whole day five days a week); our mind is made to generate proper thoughts and emotions and function in proper pace and rythm.
Proper breathing – our body does live only while it is properly provided with life energy – Prana. One of the physical aspects of Prana is oxygen which we breathe in to enrich our blood with. Subtle aspects of life energy are even more important. Correct breathing is the most important for the health and the best instrument to control mind and body state.
Proper nourishment – with water, food, air components (oxygen, nitrogen etc.), impressions getting though all five sense organs.