Published: 03/31/2006 - Updated: 08/09/2019
Author: Prof. Dr. Luis Ruiz-García
Ayurveda means "science of the long and happy life."
Ayurveda is an ancient art of healing, as practiced in India for over 5000 years uninterrupted. In Sanskrit language "Ayur" means life and "Veda" knowledge. Literally means "science of life." It is not conceived only as a medical system but as a real life system to promote health.
It was formally recognized by the World Health Organization as a traditional medical system. The Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) under the Institute of Health in the United States located Ayurveda within the category of higher professionals in complementary systems. In India there are 134 medical schools, which must be studied for more than five years to get the title of doctor.
Ayurveda is a living medicine, by its design and its methodology is integrated with modern medicine, complementing its valuable contributions and solutions. It accepts and encourages the observation and research, which has helped corroborate many of its postulates and recommendations.
Its principles are universally applicable to the daily existence of every individual. Now, there is growing interest and acceptance of the Ayurveda throughout the world because it offers practical solutions to problematic factors of medicine of the century in a context of profound respect for the person and nature.
It is effective in the prevention and cure of diseases, the health and promoting longevity.
The aim of Ayurveda
Ayurveda was born so that humans can meet the purpose of existence: to discover our inner reality. Health is the basis for fulfilling this goal. Ayurveda helps the healthy person to maintain health and avoids getting sick.
- It is the first holistic system that integrates body, mind and spirit.
- It is proved by experience over 5000 years.
- Its principles are universally applicable to the daily existence of every individual.
- It is capable of treating the disease instead of merely the symptoms.
- It focuses on the treatment of the patient.
- Uses multiple treatments, usually neglected in the individual.
- The specific therapy is mainly of natural remedies.
- It aims to achieve rejuvenation and restore the body's balance
- Purifies toxins accumulated through Panchakarma techniques
- There is an equivalence between the universe or macrocosm and microcosm, or the person.
- Any positive or negative experience at the body has its effect on the mind and vice versa.
- Just as the truth is infinite and every single person, the treatments are infinite and for each one of us.
- The best medicine is to cure the patient.
- All food is a remedy and each remedy is food.
- Traditionally, there are eight specialties: general medicine, pediatrics and obstetrics, surgery, ophthalmology and otolaryngology, toxicology, psychology, and virilization and rejuvenation.
- Its bases are covered by the philosophical theory of the five elements (ether, air, fire, water and earth) of Tridosha (Vata, Pitta and Kapha) and the three body types, seven dhatus or tissues, the three bad or excretory products, and the Trinity of life shaped by the body, mind and spirit.
The ayurvedic pharmacopoeia includes over 5000 different formulations which have evolved over millennia. It has proven its effectiveness, tolerance and safety in the laboratory of life. The World Health Organization has stated that international declarations of Ayurvedic traditional remedies, therefore, it is not required to be subjected to clinical and laboratory studies to be approved as drugs.
Ayurveda includes topics not usually addressed by allopathic medicine, such as taking into account systematically diet and lifestyle, based on the psychophysical biotypes. It recognizes that the ultimate cause of all diseases is violating the laws of nature. The elements central to the treatment and prevention of diseases are based on promoting the mental balance and reducing stress.
It recognizes that our health cannot be separated from what we eat, what we do and what we think. Ayurveda gives us a system to understand the set of qualities and energies moving through our daily life practices, so we can use to stop or prevent imbalances that cause disease.
Ayurveda emphasizes the pursuit or maintenance of a healthy life through a system of daily behavior austere, dietary regulations, seasonal changes, instructions related to sleep and sexuality and other issues similar to everyday life. This will is in harmony with cosmic rhythms of nature.
In the East, the key to understanding is the acceptance, observation and experience, while the West focuses on the questioning, analysis and logical deduction. This way of dealing with things differently requires a new way of thinking by people who begin studying Ayurveda.
Ayurveda, as the constitution of each person, offers a comprehensive plan to maintain and / or restore the balance of mind-body based on diet, physical activity, daily routines, and mental harmony with spiritual development, adding support with herbal remedies and techniques of detoxification and rejuvenation.
Source: Prema Ayurveda Health Foundation
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