Making Ayurveda Contemporary
What is the Purpose of Ayurveda?
" स्वस्थस्य स्वास्थ्य रक्षणं आतुरस्य विकार प्रशमनं च "
Charak Samhita Su. 30/26
The purpose of Ayurveda is described as
स्वस्थस्य स्वास्थ्य रक्षणं - Unlike contemporary science where the a lot of emphasis is laid on treatment and medication, Ayurveda makes a mark by stating that its prime focus is to maintain the health of a healthy individual. The three founding pillars of Ayurveda Charaka Samhita, Susruta Samhita and Ashtanghridaya emphasize on the importance of a structured daily routine 'Dinacharya' , well-founded seasonal routines 'Rutucharya', 'Annapaana Vidhi' i.e. knowing the foods which go into our bodies and 'Aahar Vidhi Vidhaan' which states the the role of cleanliness, emotions and eating environment on our food and ultimately our bodies. Leading a conscious life in accordance with the aforementioned principles of Swasthavrutta helps in sustaining health, improving vitality and warding off diseases.
आतुरस्य विकार प्रशमनं - This means curing a diseased individual and restoring their health. However, Ayurveda firmly believes that healing does not merely mean getting rid of a disease. It implies replenishing the 'dhatus' or the body tissues which were compromised in the diseased state along with taking effective measures to prevent the recurrence of the disease in future. The science of sages does not believe in symptomatic treatment but thoughtfully employs 'Aahar' (diet), 'Aachar' (conduct), 'Vihaar' (lifestyle) and 'Aushadh' (medicines) when it comes to healing the body (or the mind).