The word ‘’Ayurveda’’ means ‘’Science of Life’’. It is the oldest medical system in the world known today and at the same time it’s the art of daily living.
Ayurveda originated in India 5000 years ago. It is considered to be the oldest recorded health system that we know of today and it is called by scholars the ‘’Mother of all health sciences’’. The knowledge of Ayurveda derives from the Vedas and is based on the shad darshan (six philosophical schools of India). One of these is the school of Yoga philosophy and here we see the intimate link between Yoga and Ayurveda. They are sister sciences, 2 branches of the same tree and it is therefore strongly advised for any Yoga student to have knowledge of Ayurveda as well.
Ayurveda is a natural and holistic system. It considers the human being as a unity of body, mind and spirit, each unique. We are all different people with our own strengths and our own weaknesses, and to get to know our own Body-Mind-Spirit and how it interacts with our environment will give us the key to health and longevity, because it will tell us what our needs are. Ayurveda gives a profound yet easy to understand way to do exactly that.
Ayurveda is both a medical science and practical art of daily living. Treating illnesses is only a part of Ayurveda. It is about preventing illness and enhancing health, vitality and longevity. This can only be achieved when body, mind and spirit are in harmony. Ayurveda aims to maintain our harmony and balance or restore them when they are disturbed. Crucial in this is the adjustment of our personal lifestyle to our individual needs.
You can consult an Ayurvedic practitioner with any question regarding your health. Different aspects will be considered, such as your individual constitution (prakruti, balance of tridosha), the state of your digestive/metabolic system and others organ systems and tissues as well as your mental emotional state, (medical) history and daily habits. Amongst others your tongue, pulse and body energy will be examined.
Nutritional advice and other lifestyle-advices play a large role in Ayurvedic treatment. Ayurveda is specialized on cleansing and rejuvenation processes. Amongst others methods used are marma (vital energy point) therapy, oil massages, joint manipulation (gentle musculo-skeletal work), advice regarding the use of herbal remedies, breathing techniques, meditation, yoga and other exercises and many more.
Working with Ayurveda is usually not a quick fix, aiming to reduce only the symptoms (there is no so-called “magic pill”), but it is rather like embarking on a journey of self-discovery and self-healing, which works on a deep and profound level to reach true health, harmony and happiness. This gives the chance to start living Life to the fullest of our potential. And what joy can be greater?
Drs. Judith Marianne Aartsma