Ayurveda for Modern Life
Oct 01, 2019 11:25PM
By Jaya Daptardar
Ayurveda is a science of life. It is the world’s oldest healing science, originating in India more than 5,000 years ago. Also referred to as “Mother of Healing,” it is based on lifestyle management according to the principle of natural healing systems relating to the five elements of nature. Those five elements pair up and create three doshas in Ayurveda called vata (air, space), pitta (fire, water) and kapha (earth, water).
Ayurveda places great emphasis on prevention and encourages the maintenance of health through the harmonious balance of body, mind and soul. This is achieved through right thinking, right diet, lifestyle, use of herbs and matching food with the season. Knowledge of Ayurveda enables one to understand how to create this balance of body, mind and self-consciousness according to one’s own individual constitution and how to create a lifestyle that brings about and maintains balance.
Many factors, both internal and external, disturb the balance in our bodies, which is reflected in the mind. These include emotional and physical stress, dietary changes, seasonal and weather changes, physical or mental trauma, work and family relationships and financial stress. Once these factors are identified, we can take appropriate action to balance or minimize their effects. Balance is order and imbalance is disorder. When you understand the nature of your order and disorder, you can re-establish the order on your own.
In the last 20 years, there has been an increase in stress, anxiety and chronic illnesses in the workplace; human resource departments are overwhelmed with finding solutions to daily stress, anxiety, anger, sick days, and resignations due to poor work/life balance. As a result, some organizations are bringing in Ayurvedic experts to coach and train their employees in lifestyle management. Many corporate workplaces now offer yoga, meditation and mindfulness training during a typical workday. Ayurveda retreats are also becoming popular in the workplace. This ancient science teaches team members to understand different personalities and their typical constitutions (vata, pitta, kapha) to help improve working relationships.
Ayurvedic doctors use various wellness assessment techniques to evaluate signs and symptoms of imbalances. They ask a lot of questions; take your pulse; observe your tongue, skin, eyes, hair, physical body form and tone of voice to find the correct imbalance of dosha. Only then will they recommend lifestyle changes, dietary adjustments, herbs and cleansing measures to rid the body of accumulated toxins to restore balance.
Ayurveda recognizes that each of us is unique, and we respond differently to the many aspects of our modern lives, each with our own inherent strengths and weaknesses. Understanding Ayurveda’s teachings on the relationships between cause and effect, both immediate and subtle, filtered through each individual point of view, will allow its ancient secrets to restore balance to our modern world.
Jaya Daptardar, BAMS, MHA, has been practicing and teaching Ayurveda in the U.S. for the past 18 years. She is the founder and president of Active Ayurveda and Yoga LLC and The Institute of Ayurveda and Life Style Management and has developed a wellness program to treat mental health and addiction-related issues. To contact her, email [email protected] visit AyurBeautyAndLifestyle.com or call 203-857-4123.