Ayurveda Vedanta

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    Ayurveda-vedanta: The Vedanta of

    Life Science

    krishna varnam tvishakrishnam sangopangastra

    parshadam

    yajnaih sankirtana prayair yajanti hi sumedhasah

    This is a verse from the Srimad Bhagavata Purana,

    ( 11.5.32 !

    "#n the age of $a%i, inte%%igent persons &orship the

    in'arnation of odhead &ho 'onstant%y performs the

    sa'rifi'e of 'ongregationa% g%orifi'ation of the )ord.

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    *%though +is eterna% 'omp%eion is not -%a'kish, &ithin,

    +e is $rishna +imse%f. +e is a''ompanies -y +is

    asso'iates, servants, &eapons and 'onfidentia%

    'ompanions.*''ording to the opinion of many *'haryas &ho are

    eperts in the study of /edi' %iterature, this verse

    des'ri-es the in'arnation of )ord Sri 0haitanya

    ahapra-hu, &ho des'ended to earth in the ho%y p%a'e

    kno&n as avadvipa on the -ank of the ahnavi (anges

    river in the present state of 4est Benga%, #ndia, in the

    year of 167 *.8.

    )ord 0haitanya ahapra-hu, -e'ame famous as imai

    pandita (pandita means a great s'ho%ar of the /edas9

    having -een -orn under the medi'ina% neem tree, +e &as

    kno&n as imai from +is ear%y 'hi%dhood, -e'ause of his

    erudite s'ho%arship of the vast o'ean of /edi' %iterature.+e 'ompared the ten essentia% su-je'ts of the Srimad

    Bhagavata Purana &ith the ten medi'ina% roots of the

    *yurveda (8asha mu%as.

    +e ep%ained that, just %ike the dasha mu%as made into an

    "arishtam 'ures the diseases 'aused -y the im-a%an'eof the three dhatus, vi:., $apha, vayu and pitta (mu'us,

    air and -i%e , in the same &ay the dasha mu%as of Srimad

    -hagavatam (the ten root su-je'ts &i%% 'ure the diseases

    of materia% identifi'ation 'aused -y the im-a%an'e of the

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    three gunas, vi:, sattva, rajas and tamas (goodness,

    passion and ignoran'e.

    *''ording to Sri 0haitanya ahapra-hu, Srimad

    Bhagavata Purana is a natura% 'ommentary on the

    /edanta;sutras of Sri%a /yasadeva!

    artho

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    *%% /edanti' epositions are 'ommentaries -y various

    *'haryas on the /edanta sutras. So the ten essentia%

    su-je't matters of Srimad Bhagavata purana are %ike

    "/edanti' o-servation and pres'ription -y the(*yur/edi' a'harya /yasadeva -ased on his o&n study

    of the (*yur/eda shastra , the /edanta;sutras.

    Thus there is no dou-t that the *yurveda shastras and

    the /edanti' shastras have a very simi%ar, if not a'tua%%y

    the same, purpose to them. +aving esta-%ished this

    samya and sam-andha (resem-%an'e and re%ationship of

    *yurveda and /edanta, %et us make an ana%yti'a% study of

    the su-je't through the eyes of -oth /edanti' and

    *yurvedi' *'haryas!

    edi'ine and hea%ing are the t&o most important physi'a%

    s'ien'es ep%ored and deve%oped in the vedi' times. The

    yaya, /aiseshika and Sankya 8arshanas are dire't%y and

    intimate%y 'onne'ted &ith these aspe'ts of vedi'

    kno&%edge.

    +atha yoga, Tantra physio%ogy, Siddha and many other

    yoga s'hoo%s of study etensive%y dea% in their anatomyse'tions &ith su-je'ts from the diffusion of energy in the

    -ody through the nervous system (-ased on the 'hakra

    %inked management of energy up to the study of

    em-ryo%ogy, heredity and geneti' 'odes.

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    # = *yurveda as part of the /edas

    The great *yurvedi' *'haryas have 'onfirmed that

    *yurveda is a%so part of the /edas.

    Susruta, one of the greatest *yurveda *'haryas says in

    his Samhita (1.1.5 !

    "*yurveda is an upanga of the *tharva /eda, 'ontaining

    1>>,>>> verses in one thousand 'hapters. Brahma is the

    author of these verses.

    4hi%e hands and %egs are angas of our -ody, toes andfingers are upangas. The a'ademi' vie& may not -e a-%e

    to digest that su'h a %arge upanga &ou%d have -een part

    of the *tharva veda, -e'ause the entire avai%a-%e tets of

    the present *tharva veda seem to -e mu'h sma%%er than

    *yurveda a%one as des'ri-ed in the a-ove tet?

    But sti%% *'harya Susruta@s statement is an "apta vakya9

    So it 'annot -e under;estimated or reje'ted as a mere

    eaggeration. There are reasons &hy the present

    num-ers, shape and form of the vedi' tets do not ta%%y

    &ith fa'ts and figures mentioned in the puranas and

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    other vedi' %iteratures. That is yet another area of

    resear'h and &e do not &ant to go off the tra'k from our

    present dis'ussion.

    *s *yurveda is an upanga of the /edas, it has the same

    purpose in a different denomination. The Apanishads

    &hi'h are 'onsidered as the end of the vedi' kno&%edge,

    (veda;anta or /edanta, aim at understanding the

    a-so%ute truth, Brahman, -eyond the fun'tioning of

    eterna%, materia% nama;rupa;jagat (the 'onstant%y

    'hanging energy of name and form. #n a different

    denomination of the %eve% of epression, *yurveda a%so

    aims at the study and maintenan'e of the me'hanism of

    the -ody &ith a purpose of giving fu%% potentia%

    fun'tioning duration so that the aim of %ife 'an -e

    a'hieved. Thus there is /edanta in the *yurveda ; and it

    is in no &ay of a %esser vo%tage than any other upanga of

    the /edas.

    *''ording to /edanta , %ife is eterna% and &as never

    produ'ed or 'ame into eisten'e, at a parti'u%ar time in

    the history. The Apanihsads are very insistent on this

    point of /edanta. The $atha upanisad 1.2.16 says!

    na jayate mriyate va vipash'in nayam kutash'a na

    -a-huva kash'it

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    ajo nityah shashvato@yam purano na hanyate hanyamane

    sharire

    "or the sou%, there is neither -irth nor death at any time.

    #t does not 'ome into -eing at any time, it is un-orn,

    eterna% and primeva%. #t doesn@t die &hen the -ody is put

    to death.

    The -asi' foundation of ayurveda is a%so on the same

    p%atform. The %ife or *yu is fu%%y 'omprehended as eterna%

    and -eyond the -odi%y eisten'e. Su'h kno&%edge (veda,

    makes the phrase "kno&%edge of %ife, vi:., *yurveda.

    /edas are 'onsidered as eterna% sound vi-ration present

    in the akasha, sha-da;-rahman9 The kno&%edge in the

    /edas is eterna%. Therefore, the kno&%edge of *yurveda,this kno&%edge of %ife, its for'e in the -ody and its

    distri-ution through the dhatus -y the %ife airs is a%so

    eterna%. There has a%&ays -een the 'ontinuity of the

    s'ien'e of %ife, vi:., *yurveda.

    The different sty%es of systemati' 'ompi%ation of thekno&%edge and instru'tions for the pra'ti'a% app%i'ation of

    that kno&%edge 'ertain%y have an origin in re'orded

    history. But the spirit and sou% of this kno&%edge is

    dire't%y part (upanga of the eterna%, undying vedi' %ore

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    (*tharva veda. #t has never taken "-irth at a parti'u%ar

    time.

    Cven though at present on%y the treatises of 0haraka and

    Susruta, &hi'h &ere 'ommented on -y %ater *'haryas,

    are taken as *yurveda, a''ording to Susruta himse%f

    *yurveda is the origina% tea'hing of Brahma &hi'h &as

    %ater simp%ified into eight parts to suit the degraded

    inte%%e'tua% Dua%ity of the peop%e of this age of $a%i.

    There are eight departmenta% %im-s (ashtanga of

    kno&%edge in ayurveda!

    1 sa%ya surgery2 sa%akya treatment of head

    3 kaya 'ikitsa treatment of ordinary diseases of -ody

    -huta vidya treatment of inf%uen'e of go-%ins

    5 kaumara -hrtya treatment for 'hi%dren@s diseases

    7 aagada tantra antidotes to poisons

    E rasayana s'ien'e of rejuvenation of -ody

    6 vajikarana reviva% of seua% strength

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    +aving anya%ysed the authenti'y of the ayurveda as part

    of /edas, no& &e &i%% ep%ore the 'ontents of the tets of

    ayurveda that 'onfirms this 'on'%usion.

    ## = ethods of treatment in *yurveda.

    The atharva veda dea%s &ith the treatment of diseases -y

    seven kinds of pres'riptions!

    Svastyayana propitiatory rites

    Ba%i offerings

    anga%ahoma o-%atons

    iyama penana'es

    Prayas'itta purifi'atory rites

    Apavasa fasting

    mantra 'hanting of sound vi-rations

    ; 0haraka Samhita 1.3>.2>

    Cven the dietery regu%ations and the use of medi'ines fa%%

    &ithin the 'ategory of -a%i, manga%ahoma, upasana and

    niyama.

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    # have myse%f seen the father of my fami%y do'tor &ho,

    &as treating my father for respiratory ma%fun'tion,

    pres'ri-e medi'ines &ith mantras to -e 'hanted 9 and it&orked %ike magi'? )ater on # have done a &ide range of

    resear'h on this fie%d, -oth theory and pra'ti'e, and it

    &ou%d -e &orth it to &rite a separate samhita on this

    su-je't.

    ### ; The +uman Body as a modifi'ation of the iveC%ements

    The human -ody is regarded -y 0haraka as a

    modifi'ation of the five e%ements and the seat of

    'ons'iousness ("'etanahistana -huta, 0haraka Samhita

    ..7.

    This fu%%y e'hoes the statements of the Bhagavad gita!

    -humir apo Fna%o vayu kham mano -uddhir eva 'a

    ahankara itiyam me -hinna prakrtir ashtadha

    apareyam itas tvanyam prakritim viddhi