Ayurveda, which means the ‘Science of Longevity’ is a vast medical system that has existed for thousands of years. It is a holistic science that has been refined over generations and takes into account the spiritual, psychological, emotional and physical aspects of the human being. It seeks the optimal health of the individual through the prevention as well as removal of disease when present and aims to help one flourish according to their own nature.
Digestion is of core importance to our health and in Ayurveda the functioning of our digestive system is understood as the root of all disease. This is a central belief in all the Eastern Medicine traditions that the modern West is realising more and more. Ayurveda offers ageless wisdom with regard to the diet appropriate for different people, and the effect it has on health and disease management. These universal laws can be applied to our local foods and herbs, illnesses and prevention of disease.
We are all Unique
Ayurveda understands that everyone is unique and the advice and treatment for each person may vary. We are comprised of a particular mix of psycho-physiological energies known as dosha which arise from a combination of the five elements of Ether, Air, Fire, Water and Earth 1. The dosha exist in the expression of character, body and disease through to the level of quantum physics 2. They are expressions found in all levels of the universe.
Each person is conceived having a particular constitution, prakriti, a certain balance of dosha. Through the effect of thoughts, emotions, environment, diet and age we find ourselves in a current state of health, vikruti. The aim of Ayurveda is to harmonise our current state with our original state thus achieving our own perfect balance. This is done through the use of diet, lifestyle, massage, treatments and herbs.
In determining a person’s constitution, Pulse diagnosis and Tongue diagnosis are used as well as assessment of any symptoms, patterns of illness and family history. Current bodily health, emotional well-being and mental state are also taken into account as current indicators of health. Due to our constitution we are prone to certain dispositions of health and illness. In Ayurveda and other natural ancient healing modalities, the focus is on the health of the patient rather than on the disease. It is about bringing the patient back to their optimal health and highest expression and then maintaining that. This is done by treating the root-cause of the disease rather than just the symptoms. The result is a feeling of being more balanced, of being in tune with ourselves and the universe.
With new clients we start by a consultation to determine constitution and choose the best diet to follow, which herbs and activities are appropriate, and which type of massage or treatments will help re-balance your constitution. In each of the treatments specific organic oils are used depending on one’s constitution.
(1) Ether and Air combine to form Vata, Fire and Water combine to form Pitta, and Earth and Water combine to form Kapha.
(2) More on the recent findings of Quantum Physics can be found in the Articles section under ‘Modern Science and Ayurveda’.