What Is Ayurveda?
Updated: Mar 22, 2022
Ayurveda is a healing system with its roots in the ancient Indian civilisation of the Indus Valley. Ayurveda can be translated as “the science of life” or “the knowledge of life”, ‘Ayur’ meaning life and ‘Veda’ knowledge or science.
The knowledge of Ayurveda concerns the nature, scope and purpose of life; it includes metaphysical and physical aspects of disease, happiness, sorrow, pain and pleasure. It is a holistic medical system that focuses on promoting and preserving optimal health, and preventing diseases. Its purpose is to maintain the quality and longevity of life.
When disease does occur, Ayurveda rarely deals with only treating the symptoms, it focuses on finding the cause. Most diseases are attributed to incorrect nutrition and lifestyle choices, accidents or trauma, except genetic conditions which are related to one's Karma.
The incorrect use of intellect, Prajanaparadha, which means doing something you know is bad for your health or not doing something you known is good for you, is one of the main causes of disease. This includes the improper use of the five senses such as watching or listening to things that may affect mental health.
In Ayurvedic medicine, optimal digestion is the key to preserving and promoting physical and mental health. All food, drink and emotions that we consume have a direct influence on digestion. When digestion is impaired, the body’s functional systems, bodily tissues and waste elimination become impaired.
Improper digestion and elimination of waste leads to an accumulation of toxins (Ama) in the body, which eventually causes disease. Therefore Ayurvedic medicine focuses on improving the quality of digestion.
Ayurveda provides you with a framework to understand signs of indigestion so you can correct any imbalances before they turn into disease.
To find out more about the signs of indigestion and how to improve digestion (see the blog post on how to balance Agni).