Ayurveda for Women – 1 The Foundations for Health
The word Ayurveda has three different ways:
- Knowledge of life
- Science of longevity
- Art of living
The aim of Ayurveda is to train individuals to save themselves from various diseases. It is basically a preventive measure against various diseases, not a curative measure. Though Ayurveda has many therapeutic techniques, its greatest treasures are theories of health and diseases.
A Woman’s Creativity
Life is fundamentally a matter of flow. All the life forms whether men or women depend on the healthy flow of their vitality. The science of Ayurveda focuses its attention on flow. There are various channels in human body that are predominantly important for this flow. In female bodies apart from other channels of flow there are two more channels of flow. These are i. A Milk Channel, which includes all the structures and functions involved in the production of milk and ii.
The Menstrual Channel, which plays a very important role in expelling the menstrual blood out of the body.
A woman is embodiment of creativity in our old scriptures and texts. The key difference between a man and a woman is that of creativity. It is only a woman that can create life. Motherhood comes naturally to women. Women perpetuate the human race. It is a fact that the health of a family depends largely on the health of a woman. The concern of Ayurveda is to help women find the channels of flow. In this way they can best display their own inborn creativity not only to themselves but also to the world.
Mind –Body -- Spirit
The modern science has in it the theoretical contributions from physics, chemistry, psychology., sociology and anthropology apart from many other disciplines. However the modern scientists do not have any idea how to connect these various principles. The approach of Ayurveda is different. It does not seek answer to this question from unified to the particular view but it seeks the answer to this question from particular to the unified. Ayurveda stresses the need of fitting these patterns into a framework which many disciplines of science and art can share.
The most central of all these fundamentals is the first principle generally for both the genders, particularly for women.
Life is a relationship: All humans are dependent on each other for their various needs like food, water, light, sound, love and other nutrients. These flow into our body from outside sources. Each woman influences the world by her various actions. A woman relates to herself and to her environment through the physical, mental and emotional levels. The road to health is nothing but the road to self-knowledge or we can say a path of awakening.
All the Systems are Closely Interconnected: All the systems of human body are closely interconnected. Ayurveda does not treat any one of these systems. It is in fact body-mind-spirit medicine.
Matter Develops from Consciousness: The central to Ayurveda is concern for soul and spirit. The old rishis and munis discovered that consciousness is omnipresent. Everything in the universe that is not pure has in it unconditional consciousness. From the human point of view this consciousness is very limited. This consciousness is always been interrupted. However, this concept of consciousness is diametrically opposite to that of materialistic science. The modern science only teaches us that consciousness is evolved from the matter only. But in Ayurveda it has been proved that the consciousness in not limited to matter only rather it extends to living beings also. In Ayurveda, the ‘whole-body’ comprehension is taken to account. Our Ayurvedacharyas studied how a living form’s body, prana (life force), thinking mind, emotional mind and consciousness ---all these interplay within the functional relationships that exists between that being and its environment.
All Flows In All Parts Interact And Influence One Another: A woman can direct the flow of prana in her limbs or mind or any other organ. However all the flows are not equal. The flow of influence is predominantly from subtler to denser. Since prana is subtler than body therefore the flow of prana affects the mind more than the body. Mind is even subtler than prana thus its influence on prana is more significant than the prana influence on the mind. When we explore our souls to ourselves, we can find that it instigates the mind far more efficiently than the mind, prana and body. However this concept of soul is unknown to the West. The West has influenced us so much that we too have started forgetting the importance of soul and spirit.
Thus in this article we have studied the foundations of health not only for women but also for men. Both men and women are two pillars of mankind and each are supplement to each other. None can exist without the other.
Disclaimer: Most of the ideas in this extract have been taken from the book AYURVEDA FOR WOMEN by Dr Robert E. Svoboda. Though we have tried to modify the language in the simplest possible manner, we are thankful to the writer for giving us so many ideas and thus enhancing our knowledge,