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What is Ayurveda?

Defination & origin

Ayurveda is made up of two sanskrit words …AYUR means life & VEDA means the knowledge of. That means ayurveda is a science or knowledge of life.

Ayurveda is holistic system of medicine.

Origin

Ayurveda is convoluted system of healing that originated in INDIA more than 6000 years ago.

As per historical evidences Ayurveda is ‘’UPAVEDA ‘’ of ‘’ ATHARV VEDA’’ (part of )

Purpose of Ayurveda

As per all ancient ayurveda texts there are 2 purpose of ayurveda.

I. preventive purpose:- prevention from diseases by providing guidance regarding food , lifestyle, and also through medicines and panchakarma.

II. curative purpose:- to cure diseases from it’s root cause with the help of medicines(compulsory), panchakarma (optional),diet and proper lifestyle changing.

How ayurveda fundamentally works

  • Ayurveda defines a human being as a conglomeration of PANCHAMAHABHUTAS (FIVE ELEMENTS ) and ATMA (SOUL) .FIVE ELEMENTS ARE AS:
    • PRITHVI ( EARTH)
    • JAL( WATER)
    • AGNI (FIRE)
    • VAYU(AIR)
    • AAKASH(EATHER)
  • These 5 elements (panchamahabhutas) are present in the body in the form of DOSHAS,DHATUS & MALAS comprising various organs & organic systems.
  • 3 DOSHAS ( VATA+ PITTA+ KAPHA) , 7 DHATUS ( RASA+RAKTA+MANSA+MEDA+ASTHI+MAJJA+SHUKRA) , 3 MALAS (PURISH+MUTRA+SWEDA) all together make up physical aspect of human being,which is gross,inactive and unconcious.
  • As against ATMA (SOUL) is subtle , active and concious.
  • Soul activates the material body.
  • Between material body and soul there’s mind & five senses which co-ordinates the function between soul & physical body.
  • Thus,human being has 3 aspects of personality.
    1. Physical (somatic) 2.Mental 3. Spiritual
  • The period of time during which all 3 aspects of personality exists & works together is called AYUS ( LIFE) .
BODY CONSTITUTION
  • As per ayurveda the functional aspect of our body is governed by 3 energetic forces or biological humours .
    • vata( eather + air) =regulates all body movements & represented by nervous system
    • Pitta( water + fire) = which is principle of biotransformation & cause of all metabolic processes.
    • kapha(earth + water) = responsible for all structural & lubrication in the body.
  • Vata,pitta & kapha are somatic while rajas & tamas are psychlogical energetic forces.
  • The sperm which is male seed & the ovum which is female egg also contain vata,pitta & kapha.
  • Vata,pitta, & kapha ‘s proportion in the body changes according to diet,lifestyle & emotions.like father’s lifestyle,emotions & diet influences sperm & ovum by mother’s .at the time of fertilization when sperm enters ovum , individual constitution is determined , which has seven types.
    • Vata domi nant
    • Pitta dominanat
    • Kapha dominant
    • Vata + pi tta domi nant
    • Pitta + kapha dominant
    • vata+kapha dominant
    • vata+pitta+kapha all in same proportion.
Vata dosha

The importance of vata dosha is most among 3 doshas is because of vata is the main driver of the body ,including pitta & kapha,all the tissues (dhatus) & malas(waste products) . if vata becomes imbalanced for long & sufficiently enough ,it can also cause the other 2 doshas to become imbalanced .

Vata dosha typesLocationFunction
prana vata Heart ,chest, throat
  • regulates will power, heart, sense organs,intellect and vision
  • cause for expectoration,sneezing, belching,inspiration and swallowing of food
udana vata chest
  • its functions are initiation of speech,effort, enthusiasm , strength, color,complexion and memory
  • correlated with breath and process of respiration.
Vyana vata located in the heart, moves all over the body in great speed
  • related with blood circulation and muscle activities – flexion and extension
Samana vata stomach
  • Digestion of food in stomach and duedenam by regularise digestive enzymes secretions
Apana vata Large intestines,bladder ,genitals
  • Defecation
  • urination
  • ejaculation of sperm in men
  • menstruaion in women, child birth
Pitta dosha

Pitta governs all heat, metabolism and transformation in the mind and body. It controls body’s digestive and metabolic system and how we discriminate between right and wrong.

Types of pittaLocationFunction
Pachaka pitta Between stomach and large intestines Digestion and transformation of food materials. It cooks the food, divides it into essence and waste,
Ranjaka pitta Liver,spleen Forming rakta dhatu from essence of digested food
Sadhaka pitta heart It attends to mental functions such as knowledge, intelligence, self-consciousness, etc, thereby helping the purpose – aims of life.
Alochaka pitta eyes Helps in vision
Bhrajaka pitta SKIN helps exhibition of color and complexion.
Kapha dosha

Kapha governs the structure & immunity of the body. It is the principle that holds the cells together and forms the muscle, fat, bone. The primary function of Kapha is protection.

Types of kaphaLocationFunction
Avalambaka kapha chest Lubrication and nourishing
Kledaka kapha stomach It moistens the hard food mass and helps in digestion.Forming rakta dhatu from essence of digested food
Bodhak kapha toungue perception
Tarpaka kapha head Nourishes sense organs
Shleshak kapha Bone joints lubricates and strengthens the joint.