What is Ayurveda?
Ayurvedic Medicine is a system that literally translates into the science of life. This system also translates as the science of medicine. The Ayurvedic system dates back 5,000 years. Ayurveda looks into the human body in a way that it breaks down every part of the body and how it interacts with nature. In other words, it is not humans and nature. It’s humans are nature, and nature is human. Ayurveda has been around longer than any other medicine and because of that, it was the original knowledge used to fix ailments and “dis-ease” in the body. Ayurveda considers the human body and soul as a microcosm in the mass macrocosm of the universe. Humans are merely small entities in a vast universe that coexists together to heal from the inner most part of the soul.
Ayurvedic medicine doesn’t just take a disease and treat it through medication, it takes the whole human, not just symptoms into consideration. Every human body is so unique why would it ever be considered okay to treat any individual the same as another? Ayurveda analyzes each person through their unique constitution by having the patient answer a series of questions in regards to the chief complaint at hand and questions relevant to the patient from childhood all the way to present moment, reading the pulse and looking at the tongue. Also, it is important to understand that Ayurveda doesn’t just spend five minutes with each patient. The principles are based on Health and Fitness. Ayurvedic practitioners sit with the patient to find the translucency between patient and practitioner. The practitioner needs to know you and your condition fully to understand how to treat you fully.
Relativity of The Five Elements of Life
The relativity of the five elements of life and how they exist in the human body governs the principles of ayurvedic medicine. These five elements are fire, water, air, space, and earth. The body possesses all of these elements.
Consider fire for instance, heat control or fire regulates the body’s temperature. This principle also governs the digestive fire. Alongside, if you ever have heard someone say “fire in their eyes”, Vision is relative to fire as well.
Air is the idea of how things such as fluid and blood move through the channels. The means to get from one place to the next. Air also obviously controls the breath or “prana” the life force energy.
60% of water makes up the human body. So, the idea of water as a component of the body is a primary ingredient.
The earthy value in the body is the idea of the stability and strength within the body. What are the stable trees within the body; the bones and the muscles, these are the strength or grounded earthy principles within the body.
Space is all that is in between the physical channels of which air, water, blood and other fluid pass through. In this idea it is very relative that the principles of every living thing on the planet are connected and humans are no different.
After examining the patient, a constitution or “Prakriti” questionnaire is asked. This questionnaire asks questions of the patient to see how they are from birth to now. This gives the practitioner a better understanding of which of the five elements are more prevalent in that specific person. ‘Doshas’ is the name of these bioenergetics combinations of the elements. The Doshas have three parts: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Firstly, Vata is the air and space. Secondly, Pitta is the fire and water. Lastly, Kapha is the earth and water. Depending on the outcome of your prakriti, it will determine which dosha is more relevant in you. So, after finding out all of this information, it is then that the practitioner treats the patient whether it’s through:
- Herbal Medicine
- Massage and Rejuvenation Therapies
- Breathing Techniques
Ayurveda is the primary form of medicine when wanting to understand yourself in body, in mind and in consciousness.