What is Ayurvedic Medicine
Originating in India over 5000 years ago, Ayurveda is one of the oldest and most comprehensive systems of healing in the world. It is more than a mere medical system to treat disease, but a way of life that promotes abundant health, vitality and energy.
Ayurveda, pronounced ‘are-you-vay -da’ is a Sanskrit word: ayu meaning ‘life’, and veda meaning ‘knowledge’ or ‘science’. It is therefore translated as the ‘science of longevity’, ‘the art or life’ or ‘the wisdom of life’. Ayurveda is the science by which the totality of life is understood and a body of wisdom that teaches us how to live a healthy and happy life.
It stems from the ancient body of knowledge known as the Vedas, which also brought us Yoga, meditation and various other eastern Philosophies.
Ayurveda describes the diet, medicine and lifestyle behaviours that are beneficial to life and consciousness as well as those that are damaging. Ayurveda gives you the knowledge and tools to obtain optimal health and wellbeing. It aids you in living a long, happy and fulfilled life, helping you to reach your full human and spiritual potential.
Ayurveda has stood the test of time as a medical system as it is based on the laws of nature, which themselves are unchanging.
Ayurveda views the human being as part of nature – we are intrinsically connected to the world around us. We are composed of the same elements (air, space, fire, water and earth) as the world around us and governed by the same natural forces. These elements make up everything in the universe: organic and inorganic; animate and inanimate; nature, food, stars, planets, animals and us humans.
Therefore, what we can gather from this knowledge is that specific changes in our environment or food, for example, can result in similar changes in our body. Ayurveda teaches us how to live a life in alignment and in harmony with nature. It’s when we support this relationship and align ourselves with nature's flow, that we experience perfect health.
Ayurveda is indeed a holistic form of medicine and views health as not merely the absence of disease, but the harmony between mind, body, spirit and the world around us.
Ayurvedic medicine aims to create a healthy body, peaceful mind, vital spirit, and a balance in the 3 vital forces in the body and mind, known as the doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha.
This view is such a strong contrast to the biochemical model of modern medicine that views the body in a deconstructed chemical and mechanical way.
Ayurveda believes we are an expression of a living consciousness that has the power to balance and heal itself given the right circumstances.
Ayurveda is a natural medicine, using foods, herbal medicine, body treatments such as massage, scrubs, etc., and lifestyle practices such as Yoga, meditation and purification programs to restore vitality and balance to the individual.
Ayurveda is more than a mere medical system − it is a way of life. Ayurveda offers tremendous insight into how we can live in harmony every day for optimal health and disease prevention and giving us tools and insights to reconnect with our true self, and the world around us.