Ayurveda, literally means the science of life (Ayur = Life, Veda = Science). Ayurveda is an ancient medical science which was developed in India some 5000 years ago, Ayurveda, the science of life and longevity, is the oldest healthcare system in the world and it combines the profound thoughts of medicine and philosophy. Since then Ayurveda has stood for the wholesome physical, mental and spiritual growth of humanity around the world. Believed to have been passed on to humans from the Gods themselves. Today, it's a unique, indispensable branch of medicine, a complete naturalistic system that depends on the diagnosis of your body's humours - vata, pitta and kapha - to achieve the right balance.
HistoryAyurveda is the traditional healing modality of the Vedic culture from India. Ayurveda is a Sanskrit word that literally translates as “the wisdom of life” or “the knowledge of longevity”. In accordance with this definition, Ayurvedic medicine views health as much more than the absence of disease. The wise seers and sages of the time, intuitively understanding the physiology and workings of the mind-body-spirit long before the advents of modern medicine, explained the basic principles of Ayurveda.
Ayurvedic medicine was originally an oral tradition, taught and passed directly from teacher to apprentice, who would learn and work side by side. The oldest written codification of Ayurvedic principles is found in the Rig Veda. The fundamentals are then laid out in several major treatises, including the texts from Charaka, Sushruta, and Vaghbhat. The beauty in the way these have been explained is that they rely on basic principles which can be applied practically in any day and age.
Ayurveda has thus been passed down through the centuries as a complete healing system, evolving to meet the needs of the time, and yet remaining committed to its core principles. Various cultures have drawn upon the ideas of Ayurvedic medicine, and it continues to thrive in both the East and the West. In India, an Ayurvedic physician must undergo at least a 5 year post-graduate degree program (Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery) to become qualified. In the West, Ayurveda is recognized as a Complementary and Alternative Health System by the National Institutes of Health, and is blossoming in various educational institutions.Eight Branches In Ayurveda
The Branches in Ayurveda are derived from classical Sanskrit literature, in which Ayurveda was called "the science of eight branches" (Sanskrit aṣṭāṅga ). The components are:
- Kayachikitsa (general medicine): "cure of diseases affecting the body".
- Kaumāra-bhṛtya and Bala Roga: deals with the treatment of children.
- Shalya tantra deals with surgical techniques.
- Śālākya-tantra - deals with diseases of the teeth, eye, nose, ear etc.
- Bhuta-vidya deals with the causes, which are not directly visible and not directly explained by tridosha ,pertaining to micro-organisms.
- Agada-tantra deals with antidotes to poison.
- Rasayana-tantra (Geriatrics)/(Anti Agings) : deals with rejuvenation.
- Vajikarana tantra (aphrodisiacs) deals with healthy and desired progeny.