What is Ayurveda and what is an Ayurvedic lifestyle consultant?
Ayurveda is an ancient form of holistic medicine from India, it is easily the most holistic form of medicine to ever come out of the east because Ayurveda treats the entire being mind, body, and soul not just one part of the body or a particular set of symptoms. Ayurveda is a science, in fact its name comes from two Sanskrit words Ayur which means life, more specifically it means longevity of life, and veda which means science, so Ayurveda is the SCIENCE OF LIVING A LONG LIFE. Ayurveda rose out of Yoga and like yoga is rooted in Samkhya Philosophy.
Purusha and Prakriti
Samkhya philosophy states that in the beginning there was pure cosmic consciousness, this pure cosmic consciousness is unmanifest, eternal, indestructible, it can not be perceived through the five senses, it is beyond the realms of time and space, we call this energy Purusha. You are purusha, a single cell of pure cosmic consciousness, the soul or atman in Sanskrit. Prakriti is primal nature, it is the manifestation of the creative power of purusha. Prakriti is the creative force that shapes the entire manifested universe including your body.
You are not a human being having a spiritual experience, you are a spiritual being having a human experience. Each and everyone of us is a unique cell of the supreme consciousness here to free ourselves from the bondage of samsara the cycle of birth, life, death, and rebirth, to go home and reunite with the supreme, when this happens is based on your karmas (actions) which shapes your dharma (path).
The ancient sages laid a path for us, this path includes practices that we must follow to free ourselves and go home we call those practices YOGA but that's not entirely correct The word yoga means union, to unite, to bind, to make whole. The practices we call yoga are all designed to help us see through the vail of MAYA (illusion) and realize our true nature, pure consciousness, pure love. Yoga is the goal of the practices not the practices themselves. This is hard work and sometimes takes many lifetimes, in order to be able to achieve our goal we need to keep our bodies, our vehicles in good working order and that is what Ayurveda is for.
The elemental building blocks of life.
Everything is the manifest world is made up of different combinations of the five elements of ether, air, fire, water, and earth. What makes Ayurveda unique is that not only does it recognize the five elements it recognizes the unique combinations of the elements within us which makes up your unique constitution called a dosha. Vata dosha is a combination of ether and air, Pitta is a combination of fire and water, and kapha is water and earth.
The doshas are the primary forces and subtle substances behind all physiological and psychological functions, they produce the body and are the causative factors in the disease process.
Vata dosha is the biologic humor of space and air. its qualities are dry, light, cold, rough, subtle, and mobile. Vata dosha is responsible for all physiological processes, it governs the breath, sensory and nervous systems, because of vatas involvement with the nervous system vata type disorders have more severe implications than pitta or kapha as it will affect the entire body through the nervous system.
Pitta dosha is the biological humor of fire and water the fire here is a liquid fire like acid, fire by itself can't exist in the body it would destroy it, so we can say fire contained by water. Pittas qualities are hot, sharp, slightly oily, light, mobile, and liquid. pitta governs digestion, temperature, sight, hunger, and the luster of our skin.
Kapha dosha is the biological humor of water and earth kapha is the glue that holds us together it is cold, wet, sticky, heavy and dull. Kapha is the mucus lining of the stomach and lungs, the saliva in our mouths that helps to break down food and the mucus that traps invaders in our noses. Think of clay when clay has a good wet to dry ratio it is moldable and mobile, too much water and you have a gray puddle you cant do anything with, not enough water it becomes brittle and breaks easily. All three doshas are needed in the body vata is movement and energy, Responsible for the coordination of all of the bodies functions, Pitta is our inner fire our radiance, through which we digest impressions, thoughts, air and food, while kapha is our vigor, the internalized essence of digested air, food, mental impressions, and our mental endurance.
Of course Ayurveda is an amazing system for healing and restoring wellness to our lives but Ayurveda is not just a system of medicine for when we get sick. Ayurveda is a way of living so that we don't get sick in the first place. Ayurveda is the science of living in perfect harmony with our environment, it maintains balance so we can live to our full potential and end the cycle of samsara.
What do I do as an ayurvedic lifestyle consultant?
Well Ayurvedic treatment is based on three fundamentals 1) PRAKRUTI this in an individuals birth dosha, prakruti actually means "original creation" 2) VIKRUTI this is the individuals current dosha (*hint*if the prakruti and vikruti aren't the same there's a problem) and 3) is the nature of the medicine. As an ayurvedic lifestyle consultant I determine the prakruti and then I determine the vikruti, to do this I use questions, I examine the pulse, I examine the skin, I examine the tongue. Then I formulate a treatment plan using diet, herbs, yoga, mantra, meditation, I then work with you to restore balance.
What's in my toolbox?
- Thai Yoga Massage
- Cupping Massage
- Tuning Fork Therapy
- Hot Herbal Stem Massage
- Marma Therapy
- 20 Years of Experience
Tibetan shirodhara is a modular sequence each portion as a single treatment is amazingly relaxing and therapeutic but when brought together yields amazing results.
Shirodhara is a sanskrit word composed of two roots "shiro" means head and "dhara" means a fine continuous stream. During the shirodhara portion of the treatment a fine stream of warm medicated oil is poured onto the forehead at the third eye chakra for around 20 minutes, the oil stream flows back towards the hairline over the scalp nourishing your skin and hair, soothing your nervous system, lowering your blood pressure and "defragmenting" your mind opening up creativity and silencing the unnecessary chatter.
The 90 minute four part treatment sequence begins with the psychological stress sequence anointing twelve marma points with dosha appropriate oils to begin the process of quieting the mind and preparing the energetic system for the shirodhara treatment itself. Next is the abdominal massage this has a grounding and reassuring affect and directs vata dosha back to its seat in the colon. Following the abdominal massage is the Tibetan Eye Treatment a treatment that is used in Tibet to treat headaches and snow blindness, don't be fooled by the name the place of treatment is actually the feet but it leaves the eyes feeling bright and hydrated, the Tibetan Eye Treatment also serves to direct vata dosha away from the head making the shirodhara treatment even more nourishing. and finally we arrive at the shirodhara treatment itself, for the next twenty minutes warm oil just a couple of degrees above body temperature is slowly and gently poured from a special vessel made of brass or copper over your head nourishing and soothing mind, body and soul.
The Shirodhara oil Ingredients:
Sesame oil, Sunflower oil, Lavender, Amalaki, Brahmi, Bringaraj, Nutmeg, Rose, Sandalwood, Aloe, Saffron.