Ayurveda – Ancient Science That Lives Today

Ayurveda is translated from Sanskrit language as ‘Science of Life’. It is an ancient science as the same men needed to be healthy.

It was born over 5,000 years ago in the Indus Valley, between India and what is now Pakistan, for their need of those ancient civilizations to live free of disease and sufferings. For the same reason, it remains alive today and his name is becoming more popular in the West for its effectiveness.

In this part of the world, the term Ayurveda interacts with many concepts as the Indian medicinal system, alternative medicine and natural lifestyle, Spa treatments, detoxification and rejuvenation therapies, herbs, stones, oils, energy healing, Vedic astrology, yoga, meditation, nutrition and many more.

The truth is that Ayurveda provides and can complement all that and more. For this reason, every year more Westerners travel to India to receive Ayurvedic treatments, either in spas or health centers. Similarly, many go for the purpose of study and become familiar with its principles and practices. And many others, on the voyage of spiritual discovery or simply relaxing, inevitably also exposed, in one way or another to these practices.

In 2006, nearly 15,000 Western tourists visited the state of Kerala, southwest India, to be treated with Ayurveda as an alternative medicine. In 2010, the expected figure stood at 100,000, according to Health report published by Pricewaterhouse Coopers Emerging Markets in 2007, and based on studies conducted by the Confederation of Indian Industry and McKinsey Company.

Western exposure to this ancient science has also resulted export. Simply put the word ‘Ayurveda’ or ‘Ayurvedic Medicine’ in Google and you will find the centers, doctors, consultants and therapists in Europe and America who offer this knowledge and are teaching, even at university level.

In the United States, the centers of Deepak Chopra and David Frawley in California have been the pioneers in exporting Ayurvedic knowledge and now there are many centers in California, Florida, Arizona and other states that offer consulting certifications. South America is not far behind. The Faculty of Medicine, University of Buenos Aires in Argentina offer certified courses and postgraduate Ayurvedic medicines. Other places include Chile, Mexico, Peru, Italy, Germany and Spain where you can take courses and receive treatments.

From the aesthetic point of view, there has also been a boom. In the world’s most exclusive spas offering treatments of Ayurveda as a luxury, it highlights Abhyanga, or lukewarm medicated oil massage and Shirodhara, or application of a stream of warm medicated oil on the forehead and ‘the third eye’ way of calming the mind. Unfortunately these treatments tend to be well away from the real traditions of Ayurveda and have turned more into a commercial mechanism. Ayurveda recognizes everything that is good for us and helps us heal. Science is an evolving humanity; among its many riches, Ayurveda, offers an explanation of the nature of human beings and the causes of the imbalances that cause diseases. Similarly, it details the changes and actions that the person has to take to improve.

Ayurveda studies life, what allows us to live a good life, rich in health, peace and love. Its mantra is ‘external health as a result of internal health’. It defines the human body as much more than a set of isolated systems in a bag of bones with muscles, which should only be feeding and breathing oxygen to live.

According to this science, man is a microcosm of the macrocosm, a reflection of nature, a manifestation of the elements of nature with an individual consciousness, a being that feeds on what you eat, see, hear, touch, smell, and think too.

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