Ayurveda is a 5,000 year old system of natural healing with roots in the Vedic Culture of India. The word Ayurveda originates from two Sanskrit words; Ayur meaning “life” & Veda meaning “knowledge” or “science.” This life science is often described as Yoga’s sister science. It offers a body of wisdom designed to help people stay vital while realizing their full human potential. Providing guidelines on ideal routines, diet, behavior, and the proper use of our senses. Ayurveda reminds us that health is the balanced and dynamic integration between our environment, body, mind, and spirit.
Life According to the Five Elements of Nature: What’s a Dosha?
Ayurveda sees perfection in nature. Nature consists of 5 elements: earth, air, fire, water, and space. Humans also consist of 5 elements- you see earth in our structure, air in our ability to move, fire in our metabolism, water as fluid in our bodies and space (being the most subtle element) as this invisible container of the other four elements. Everyone has a unique elemental profile; while we consist of all 5 elements, some elements are more prevalent in us than others. Ayurveda uses the term Dosha to describe our elemental profiles.
When the doshas are out of balance we experience first discomfort, then eventually disease. We often times ignore, make excuses for, or simply learn to live with these discomforts. In the mind, this can be many things including: nervousness, fear, anxiety, anger, frustration, sadness, depression, confusion, confusion, insomnia, etc. In the body this might be physical pain, digestion problems, food sensitivities, allergies, low energy, skin irritations, etc.
AYURVEDA AND THE NATURE OF DISEASE
Ayurveda believes that everyone’s natural state is health and happiness; it is a very old form of medicine focusing heavily on disease prevention and practices that develop self-awareness. This practice is meant to empower patients with techniques for personal health maintenance & wellness.
Ayurveda believes that you must treat the person, not just the condition, signs, and or symptoms of a disease process. Ayurveda states that the true nature of disease is that we become unbalanced in mind body or spirit and forget our natural healthy self. When we begin to feel unbalanced symptoms manifest in the mind or body.
Our best medicine is prevention.
Humans have 5 senses; we can see, smell, hear, taste and touch. We take in information and impressions through our senses all of the time. In fact, in this modern day and age our senses are frequently overwhelmed with information with all the stimulation they receive on a daily basis. Ayurveda utilizes physical and mental healing through utilizing 5 sense therapies. These therapies are done to bring the body back into balance when physical body, mind, or our spirit/energy is off balance. Once the body is stabilized the 5 sense therapies are done to maintain balance in the body. Five sense therapy is often done through diet, but can also incorporate healing through sound, colors, aromatherapy, Ayurvedic body therapies, and yoga/meditation.