Meaning of Ayurveda
Ayurveda defines life ‘Ayuh’ as the intelligent coordination of four parts of our existence, the soul, the mind, the senses, and the body, with the totality of nature and the cosmos. Health is not merely a state of the body, it is the sum total of the effects of our interaction with the seasons, planetary changes of the earth, and moon, other planets, as well as orbiting relationships within our lives, our loved ones and friends, co-workers etc. It works an an exchange, since we affect and are affected by every other thing including animate and inanimate thing in existence. Bringing all of this into balance is the key to living healthy as per Ayurveda.
In Ayurveda the whole life’s journey is considered to be sacred.
Definition of Ayurveda: Ayurveda is that which deals with Ayuh (life) or promotes life-span. In simple words, Ayurveda is that which deals with good, bad, happy and unhappy life, its promoters and non-promoters, span and nature.
Definition of Ayuh (Life): Mind, self and body – these three make a tripod on which the living world stands. That (living body) is Purusa (person, includes men and women both), sentient and its location is Ayurveda.
Definition of Sarira (Body): The science of Ayurveda has simplified the organizational layout of the human body into three basic components, Dosa (Body Humours), Dhatu (Tissue) and Mala (Impurities). Body is originally composed of dosas, dhatus and malas. In vedic scriptures , Purusa is defined as combination of the five great elements and consciousness.
The Ayurvedic philosophy says that an individual is bundle of ‘spirit’, desirous of expressing itself, uses subjective consciousness or Satva to manifest sense organs and a mind. Spirit and mind then project themselves into a physical body, created from the five (Panca) great (maha) eternal elements (bhutas) together called thePancamahabhutas arising from Tamas.
This is very important to understand: The entire science of Ayurveda is based on the “five great elements” (Pancamahabhuta) theory. The sense organs then use Rajas to project from the body into the external world to experience their objects. The body becoming the vehicle of mind, for gratification of senses.
Now understand how we are effected and in turn effect the whole existence: The Bhutas combine into ‘tridosas’ or bio-energetic forces that govern and determine our health or physical condition. While the three gunas (Rajas, that is activity, Tamas, that is inertia and Satva , that balances the first two) or psychic forces determine our mental and spiritual health.
Ayurveda is thus a holistic system of health care that teaches us to balance these energies in order to achieve optimum health and well being.
Definition of Health: One whose Dosas, Agni and function of Dhatu and Malas are in a state of equilibrium and who has cheerful mind, intellect and sense organs, is regarded as “Svastha” (Healthy).
Aim of Ayurveda
Dharmarthakamamoksanamarogyam, means the objective of Ayurveda is to protect health of the body and to alleviate disorders in the diseased. Disease-free condition is the best source of virtue, wealth, gratification and emancipation while the disease is destroyer of this source , welfare and life itself
Subject Matter of Ayurveda
Ayurveda provides knowledge of aetiology, symptomatology and therapeutics, best way for both the healthy and the sick, tri-aphormismic, continuing since time eternal and virtuous which was first known only to Brahma the creator.