Ayurvedic wisdom magnetizes one’s consciousness to the gifts within every moment.
Did you know Ayurveda’s nickname is: Mother of all healing arts? Developed over 5,000 years ago, the science of Ayurveda means, the study of life. This ancient science is ever-evolving to meet the physical, mental and spiritual needs of humanity. Its growth is mirroring the earlier path of Yoga over the past 20 years. Known as the inseparable twins, Ayurveda and Yoga offer a systematic and practical approach for optimizing health. Based on a philosophical model believed to have been divinely transmitted from Hindu Gods to sages and on to physicians, Ayurvedic wisdom magnetizes one’s consciousness to the gifts within every moment.
Ayurveda’s fundamental principles are firmly rooted in the five natural elements – earth, water, fire, air, and ether. These elements correspond to the Tri Doshic Philosophy of biological forces that govern life’s cycles and expression and are known as Kapha, Pitta, and Vata. From this philosophical perspective, a simplified approach to improving health can be viewed as getting closer to our nature.
Imagine 5,000 years ago, individuals spent their entire life devoted to studying life’s expression and cycles. The Rishis were sacred and gifted individuals with the ability to see and know beyond the gross material world of the five senses. They could see into the subtle and causal realms that govern the physical world. From these gifts, Ayurveda was developed. Initially, it was primarily to protect, preserve and nourish life and prevent disease, and secondarily to treat illness and heal the sick.
Today, modern lifestyles are burdened by multitudes of stressors and chronic illness is crushing our economy and collapsing our health care system. If I could go back and ask one of the Rishis, What is our greatest stressor? I can imagine their answer might be, Being ignorant of the gift of life.
So how might we apply the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda to improve our health today? Actually, there is a simple approach that everyone can appreciate. If ignorance of life’s gifts is the stressor perhaps using our senses to gain knowledge is our remedy. Our ears, nose, mouth, skin, and eyes are the threshold of our attention and energy. Ayurvedic philosophy states that each sense organ is governed by elemental energies that also link to functional organs. By gaining more command over these senses we can increase our knowledge, energy, and resilience. When we direct our attention to listen, see, and feel on purpose, we eliminate the unconscious pull of unimportant stimuli. And as we harness our attention within, the Autonomic Nervous System shifts into its parasympathetic, rest and digest mode where healing occurs. Alternatively, when our senses are over stimulated, uncontrolled, our nervous system triggers its sympathetic process of protecting us from harm, and we are geared for fight or flight. Data from our senses is constantly being gathered and every cell within every organ and tissue receive the cues from our Autonomic Nervous System.
We can learn to affect our cellular biology and manage stress by inducing the relaxation response. Pioneer Dr. Herbert Benson describes this organic process in his seminal work, The Relaxation Response. There is no drug that can breathe, move, meditate, or eat for us. And while the need for pharmacological treatment is real, I am of the opinion that our country is overprescribed at an unaccountable cost to human potential and productivity. Ayurveda’s living gifts teach us how to manually regulate the autonomic nervous system, and much more.
My study of Ayurveda began 9 years ago. Over the years I have healed and transformed what was painful and gained clarity about my purpose. My work is in service to others who seek to awaken to the gifts of their lives and transform physical, mental and spiritual suffering into joy. To this end, I am developing DoshAsana, a lifestyle brand the blends modern advances in behavior science with Ayurveda and Yoga.
For more information about the growth of Ayurveda’s role in healthcare, check out The National Institutes of Health PubMed website for research studies exploring Ayurveda’s efficacy in treating disease. https://nccih.nih.gov/health/ayurveda.