Ayurvedic medicine is concerned with health in the broad sense, including the hygiene of life, the body but also the mind. Not very accessible in France, we know especially its declensions: massages, yoga, cure, diet … Discover the principles of this practice in full revival.
Among the so-called “traditional” medicines, Ayurvedic medicine is one of the oldest and best known. Originally from India, for nearly 5,000 years, it has focused on defining each individual’s Prakruti, ie its individual constitution and the dominant principle governing its metabolism. The term Ayurveda comes from two Sanskrit words: ayur which means longevity and veda, knowledge.
The Science of Humor
Medicinal-ayurvedic-essential Ayurvedic medicine would recognize the physical features, diseases and dysfunctions most commonly affecting patients. According to this science of the humours, each individual is characterized by the mixture of three humours.
The three main humors form the Doshas, the vital energies that regulate the organism. They are called Vata (the wind), Pitta (bile) and Kapha (phlegm).
For schematization, those dominated by the Vata element have a slender silhouette, an imaginative and impulsive character and may be subject to insomnia and anxiety;
People of the Pitta type enjoy a certain resistance but may be the prey of anger and passionate reactions.
Finally, the Kapha would have a solid constitution with tendencies towards overweight and slowness, and even problems of obesity and cholesterol.
,These dominant types are found in varying proportions according to each one and the “pure” types are practically non-existent. This is only a vague sketch, as this refined medicine sets out to define many criteria by examining different parts of the body: the tongue, the eyes, and especially the wrist, whose pulsations will inform the vitality of the body. Patient and its possible pathologies. Urine is also at the heart of the diagnosis. It is a matter of apprehending man as a whole.
Apart from a precise diagnosis, Ayurvedic medicine advocates dietetic diets adapted to the functioning of the weakest organs of each type. The treatment of diseases, strictly speaking, consists of four main stages:
One begins with Shodan, a cleansing of the body that allows to release it from its toxins. First, a massage based on oil and herbs is carried out. Then it is the Pancha Karma where you can carry out enemas, nasal showers or vomiting considered as liberators. Foods like clarified butter or a form of yogurt, highly prized in Indian cuisine, are then recommended to restore the intestinal flora.
The second stage of treatment is the Shaman, the stage that reconciles the doshas by integrating a spiritual dimension to the treatment. The practice of fasting, singing, yoga and exercises of meditation and breathing constitutes this method of “enlightenment”. Ingestion of herbs or spices is also part of this stage of treatment. Therefore, Shaman can be both advocated for emotionally ill, immune deficient, or healthy individuals who wish to improve their overall physical condition.
The third step is called Rasayana and consists of a toning process capable of increasing the body’s capacity and performance. This step is mostly recommended for boosting fertility and sexual performance. Anti-oxidant properties are also given to Rasayana to improve longevity. Physical and respiratory exercises and herbal preparations are coupled with treatments based on compound minerals according to the dosha type of the patient.
The last step, the Satvajaya reduces stress and increases psychological balance in order to achieve greater spiritual elevation and better mental performance. We are initiated to the mantras, or sound therapy, to the yantras, which allows a greater concentration and tantras that allow to direct the energy through the body and to liberate the consciousness.
Still very practiced today in India, it remains difficult access for the Westerners. Nevertheless, certain therapeutic techniques such as massages, dietary regimes, yoga and certain purification cures are increasingly offered.