Ayurveda, the science of life, has been evolved in India around 5000 years ago and is said to be the oldest existing healthcare systems around the world. Ayurveda, the indigenous medicine system stresses on the prevention of body ailments in addition to curing them. Exceeding time and narrator, this ancient wisdom, in which fact and fantasy as well as science and conjecture are interwoven, have been devoted to retain health and youth in quest for immortality over the millennia. The great seers of ancient India have enriched the world with two remarkable legacies, Ayurveda and Yoga, which have made significant contributions to the art of healing, health and rejuvenation.
Today Ayurveda is a unique, vital branch of medicine, a complete natural therapeutic system that depends on the diagnosis of your body's humours - vata (air), pitta (heat) and kapha (water) - to achieve the right balance. Natural way to refresh yourself, Ayurveda eliminate all toxic imbalances from the body and thus regain resistance and good health.
The historical and philosophical tradition of Ayurveda
According to Hindu mythology, Ayurveda is believed to have originated as a ray of enlightenment in the cosmic consciousness of Brahma - the Creator. Brahma has composed Ayurveda as a branch of Atharva Veda (one of the four Vedas). Brahma imparted the knowledge of Ayurveda to his disciple Daksha Prajapathi, who passed it on to the Aswins, the twin gods, who in turn conferred it to Indra, the king of the gods, from Indra the knowledge has been transferred to sage Dhanwantari. And the sage has used his knowledge of ancient medicine system for the wellness of human being.
Ayurveda received a lot of encouragement during the Buddhist period in India. Buddhist monks took a religious note to the wonderful healing powers of Ayurveda. After Buddhist era, Ayurveda witnessed a decline and it was only in the late 19th and 20th century Ayurveda has been revived by some of the traditional practitioners.
Textual masterpieces on Ayurveda
The Atharva Veda lists the eight divisions of Ayurveda - the Astanga, but the nature of the disease, the principles of treatment and herbal cures, which form the core of Ayurveda have been discussed earlier in the Rig Veda, the world's oldest religious texts. Later, sages compiled separate text for Ayurveda. Atreya Samhita is said to be the oldest medical book in the world related to Ayurveda. The age of assemblage witnessed the emergence of immense amounts of classical medical literature, among them Charaka Samhita by sage Charaka and Sushruta Samhita by Nagarjuna are said to be the monumental records of Ayurveda. Ashtanga Hruduaya, one of the principal texts of Ayurveda, was composed by Vaghbata contains the essence of the eight divisions. It contains the kernel of Ayurvedic Medicine and philosophy and stands next only to the two other monumental works mentioned above. In its style of presentation, the Ashtanga Hrudaya resembles the Charaka Samhita more than the Sushruta Samhita. Vagbhata also introduced some modifications in the branch of surgery.
In Sanskrit, Ayur means 'pertaining to life' and Veda, 'science' or 'wisdom'. The philosophy of Ayurveda says that the theory of human pathology propounds that the human body is composed of Tridoshas, the three humours - Vata (air), Pitta (heat) and Kapha (water). The body in which three humours or Tridhatus are in a state of equilibrium enjoys perfect health and their disequilibrium causes ill health. The therapeutic aspect of this science focuses on regaining the perfect balance.
Importance of physician in Ayurveda
"A good physician is one who lives in a place abounding in medicinal plants and who assiduously devotes his time to the acquisition of knowledge" says Rig Veda.
About the doctor's code both Sushruta and Charaka has of different opinion. According to Charaka, the condition of illness however serious has not to be revealed to the patient, but Sushruta gives importance for telling the patient about the seriousness of illness.
An Ayurveda physician or practitioner has to treat the patient as his own son. A good physician had to be good cook as well since he had to ensure that his medicines were palatable says in Ayurveda doctrines.