system of health from Ancient India
Spices - medicine
Brief Introduction to Ayurveda
- defined as 'the science of life', 'the knowledge
of living,' and 'the art of longevity,' is the
ancient system of health and medicine originating
in the Indian subcontinent between 3 and 5 thousand
years ago. The practice of Ayurvedic principles
in relation to living well goes hand in hand with
the practice of hatha yoga. yoga
are hoping to offer Ayurvedic treatments and consultations
at Portugal Yurt Retreat this year with a local
us and enquire. other
treatments available at Portugal Yurt Retreat
wisdom, depth and enduring utility of Ayurveda
are a testimony to the civilisation from which
it came. This medical system emphasises that humans
come from nature, that we are an integral part
of the universe, and that we have a responsibility
to it. The balance of the universe lies within
us.' The Ayurvedic Cookbook
- see ref. below.
the Rig Veda, which is around 4500 years old,
there are descriptions of 67 herbs, which are
used for making medicines. The first ayurvedic
medical text, the Charaka Samhita, was written
by the Ayurvedic teacher Charaka around 700BC.
About a century later, Susruta wrote the Susruta
Samhita. Both these texts are available to students
of Ayurveda today. The Charaka Samhita focusses
on general medicine and the use of foods and herbs
for healing. The Susruta Samhita contains information
on the practice of surgery in the Ayurvedic medicine
of those times.
emphasises balance. Some of the principles of
Ayurveda are in contrast to those of modern western
nutrition, but we are all able to feel intuitively
what is right for us.
Principles of Nutrition from an Ayurvedic Perspective
should be eaten 'hot' - usually cooked.
needs to be tasty and easy to digest
needs to be eaten in the proper amounts - generally
not too much!
needs to be eaten on an empty stomach, after
your last meal has been digested.
need to work together in their actions
needs to be eaten in pleasant, stressfree surroundings.
should never be rushed, nor drawn out.
is best to focus only on eating while eating.
eat food which is nourishing to your particular
constitution - which suits your mental and emotional
whole focus of Ayurvedic nutrition is to enhance
digestion. In Ayurveda food which is heating in
nature, whether it is hot or cold, generally stimulate
Ayurvedic ideas defined:
- Spirit - Inner Spirit - Self
Prakriti - Nature - Primal Nature, our biological
constitution at birth
The 5 Tanmatras: Sensory Potentials/ Subtle Elements
Shabda Tanmatra - tanmatra of sound -
Sparsha Tanmatra - tanmatra of touch
Rupa Tanmatra - tanmatra of sight - fire
Rasa Tanmatra - tanmatra of taste - water
Gandha Tanmatra - tanmatra of smell -
The 3 Gunas: phases, states or natures of conciousness,
influencing our mental constitution
Sattva - lightness, love, life,
faith, honesty, modesty, truthfulness.
Rajas - twilight, passion, agitation,
action, emotional fluctuation, fear, desire, lust.
Tamas - darkness, inertia, non-feeling,
death, lower material forces, ignorance, attachment,
Links + Resources
Retreat - Alex Duncan, European
Institute of Vedic Studies
Institute of Vedic Studies