History of Ayurveda: The Ancient Wisdom Of Healing



History, when explored is always a key to unlock even the most unsolvable mystery. Let us spend some of our dear time in taking a trek through one such historic voyage, where each of our paces will provide us with a stack of treasure pacifying our soul. Let me tell you the name of such an estimable treasure island where I’m going to take you through!!! Yes, AYURVEDA is that one spectacular vicinity of more than 5000 years old, where we are going to fix our vision for the next few minutes. Let’s get started for this notable remark of our journey of life!!!!

Ayurveda – Name & Fame: Ayurveda‘ is composed of two Sanskrit words, Ayus meaning life and Veda meaning knowledge. According to Hinduism, there are 4 major Vedas or the holy books namely Rig Veda, Sama Veda, Yajur Veda and Atharva Veda and Ayurveda is considered as a subdivision of Atharva Veda. As the name implies, Ayurveda is a true knowledge of life that helps in leading a cultured and civilized life.

This age old spiritual science of holistic healing, which dates back to about 5000 years is still fresh in the world as a newborn pride, the main reason being its efficiency and effectiveness over all sorts of ailing illness. Few reliable sources state that Ayurveda’s basic principles got standardized around 1500 BC but there is no real evidence for the exact beginning of Ayurveda and no one exactly knows when this miraculous science had its birth as it is ageless like Mother Earth.

Ayurveda & Mother India : With its roots being deeply set in ancient India, Ayurveda is still considered to be the only existing form of holistic traditional medicinal treatment of body, mind and soul, which when blended together forms an ideal human system. India is a land of holistic traditional cultures and values, where you can find its eminence in each one of its remnants and Ayurveda, the established epic is not an exception at all.

Ayurveda – Spiritual Methodology of the Eternal Master:  A wise and a knowledgeable Master is often the reason behind any successful system in this world. Ayurveda, the miraculous medicinal approach is believed to have the Master of All Masters as its Mother. Yes, as per the Hindu mythology, Ayurveda is believed to be a boon granted by Brahma – The Lord of Creation to Dhanvantari who was crowned as the God of Medicine.

Ayurveda – Sources & Resources: The main sources of Ayurveda rest in three invaluable texts contributed by the most renowned Ayurvedic practitioners of ancient India- Charaka, Sushruta and Vaghbata. Their contributions include Charaka Samhita, Sushruta Samhita and a compilation of a set of major texts called Ashtanga Hridaya & Ashtanga Sangraha.

  • Charaka – The Esteemed Curator: Charaka is a man of mystical and legendary values. He is believed to have been in the court of Kanishka, an age old ruler of the Kushana Dynasty in India. Perfect preaching & practice of medicine together with ‘Privacy of Patient’s Confidentiality‘, one of the golden tenets of a tactful curator meant a lot to this man of values. Charaka’s literary exertion has Kaya-Chikitsa (Internal Medicine) – ‘The diagnosis and treatment of ailments through internal and external application of medicine’ as its core content.
  • Sushruta – The Skilled Surgeon: Sushruta is said to have served in the court of Gupta Dynasty as a surgeon. He is the man who took a giant pace in the field of surgery namely plastic, cosmetic and prosthetic surgery along with cesarean section and handling of compound fractures. Sushruta Samhita dealt with Shalya Tantra (Surgery) to a great extent.
  • Vaghbata – The Versatile Compiler: Vaghbata is believed to have existed in the 5th century AD, who took strenuous efforts in perfectly expressing the essence of Ayurveda in rhythmic verse which is found to be very essential by all the students of Ayurveda who commit to memorize these verses, which is the basis of Ayurvedic study of healing.

Hope this brief journey through Ayurveda proved to be inspiring and informative for you, which will certainly clad your thoughts & actions in an Ayurvedic way!!! Happy Health to You!!!

Thought for the day:

A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots. By Marcus Garvey

Suggested Reading:

  1. Textbook of Ayurveda, Volume One: Fundamental Principles by Vasant Lad
  2. An English translation of the Sushruta Samhita, based on original Sanskrit text, volume 1: Sutrasthanam by Susruta Susruta
  3. The Ayurveda Encyclopedia: Natural Secrets to Healing, Prevention, & Longevity by Swami Sadashiva Tirtha

Reference Links:

  1. Ayurveda by Wikipedia
  2. Brief History of Ayurveda by Healing Sphere
  3. History of Ayurveda by Professor Dr. P.H. Kulkarni

Sushruta Samhita



The field of medicine is undeniably the field of scientific and ethical values that serves humanity since the Stone Age. Ayurveda, the science of life absolutely shares a major part in etching the medicinal world with its efficient and profound knowledge & principles of holistic healing. As any form of science attains completion with the compilation of texts by its scholars, Ayurveda remains still intact with the exertion of three major ancient masterminds who lay behind the creation of magnificent Ayurvedic encyclopedias namely Charaka Samhita, Sushruta Samhita and Ashtanga Hridaya and Ashtanga Sangraha.

Surgery, for sure is a challenging medical remedy both for the practitioner who performs it and for the patient who undergoes it. By the time you reach the end of this post, you will speechless in awe – inspiring astonishment, as your mind will revolve around the history of a great personality, who mastered the field of surgery even before people could think of it!!!

Sushruta – The father of surgery: Sushruta is believed to be one of the initial surgeons, the world was blessed with. According to few reliable sources, Sushruta is said to have survived in the 6th century B.C. He is the notable disciple of Divodasa, who developed a school for surgery in the 6th to 9th century B.C. He came up with an endless Ayurvedic encyclopedia known as Sushruta Samhita, which is highly focused on stupendous medical thesis with its core content dealing with surgery. His excellence in the field of surgery crowned him as ‘The Father of Surgery’.

Sushruta’s Contributions to the Medical World: It will truly be a breathtaking fact to know about Sushruta’s contributions to the field of medicine that has the finest information in some of the most untouched topics of ancient world. I’m sure the forthcoming piece of information will definitely make your eyes wide open with a surprised wave of wonder!

  • ‘Father of Plastic Surgery’ – Sushruta’s contribution to the field of plastic surgery is enormous with his footsteps craved in numerous areas, few of which are Rhinoplasty (reconstruction of nose), Otoplasty (correction of the deformities & defects of earlobe), repair of lip injuries and congenital cleft lip.
  • Being a perfect pioneer of anesthesia, Sushruta advocated the use of wine to block the sensation of the patient undergoing surgery.
  • He was the perfect demonstrator of various medical techniques like making incisions illustrated with the help of vegetables like watermelon, extraction of foreign bodies etc.
  • Sushruta is the unique contributor to the field of obstetrics, orthopedics and ophthalmology and is celebrated as the first cataract surgeon.
  • He was the first to give an in-depth explanation of human anatomy, embryology and the development of fetus.
  • He practiced certain innovative techniques like using leeches to free the wounds from blood clots, ant – heads as stitching materials to stitch the intestines etc.

Sushruta Samhita – A detailed demonstration of holistic healing: Sushruta Samhita talks about every single work of Sushruta in Ayurvedic healing therapy. This book is full of tactful facts that spread the knowledge of medicine applicable to people of all ages. This Ayurvedic encyclopedia illustrates not only the detailed description of surgery & surgical equipments but also about all the related branches of medicine ranging from common illness to complicated cesarean (C-section), thus making it a complete form of medical discipline.

Sushruta Samhita was translated into many languages namely Arabic, Latin, German & English thus spreading the essence of serving mankind in treating various ailments with excellence.

To this Sage of Surgery, health was a composition of mental & physical well-being that can be incorporated by following an Ayurvedic lifestyle, the major part of which encompasses following a healthy Ayurvedic routine, effective usage of Ayurvedic essential oils in day to day life, practicing healthy physical exercises along with yoga and meditation to nurture a healthy mind.

What are you still waiting for?!?!? With the fresh memories of Ayurveda and the Ayurvedic scholar – Sushruta in your minds, grab a sheet of paper to pen down your day to day Ayurvedic activities for your future that will make your lifestyle Unique & Ayurvedic!!!

Thought for the day:

The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.                                                               -Voltaire

Suggested Reading:

  1. An English translation of the Sushruta samhita, based on original Sanskrit text, volume 1: Sutrasthanam By Susruta Susruta
  2. Susruta Samhita: Text in Sanskrit with English Translation By Kaviraj Bhishagratna
  3. Synopsis of Ayurveda: Based on a translation of the Su’sruta Samhit=a (The Treatise of Su’sruta) By G. D. Singhal, T. J. S. Patterson

Reference Links:

  1. Sushruta by Wikipedia
  2. Sushruta Samhita by Wikipedia
  3. The Internal Journal Of Plastic Surgery by Dr.Sanjay Saraf & Dr.Ravi S.Parihar

Importance of Ayurveda in the West



Modern world has gifted us with enormous innovative tools and techniques that have made life easier to live. But an explicit insight on the pros and cons of this massive technological development instinctively fills our mind with a wide range of chaos! The more the world progresses technically, the more the human life steps ahead in stress, ailments and an innate mechanical progress. Thus life becomes so insensible that one is always deemed with worries and stress. What could be the apt antidote to this malady? Ayurveda stands distinct as the most holistic remedy to end this mechanical life and mark the start of a natural way of living filled with eternal bliss! This is the reason why Ayurveda is widely recognized in the west in recent times.

Ayurveda serves as the root for Traditional European Medicine (TEM), Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Unani – a natural system of healing of the Middle Eastern world. This is the strong reason why Ayurveda is rightly called as the ‘Mother of Natural Healing’. With its genesis in ancient India, the essence of Ayurveda spread to the west with the advent of many foreigners who translated the Ayurvedic encyclopedias namely Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita to Arabic, Latin, German and English.

It is a well known fact that the first major plastic surgery in the western world was performed in 1815 by Carpue who spent 20 years in India to study the Ayurvedic surgery methods. Amazing right!!! This is just a single piece of information that is known to the world and there are much more Ayurvedic secrets to be revealed and relived.

Importance of Ayurveda in the West: Western Culture is more secured with massive man-made technologies that are strong enough to weaken the resources of nature of which human resource forms a major part. Decrease in physical efforts makes life more involuntary thus increasing the mental stress. Apart from this, the modern medical system deals only with the ailments rather than their root causes, resulting in a temporary relief with more side effects that make the ailments permanent and vulnerable. Thus, people are drawn towards the most dependable holistic approach that has a unique gift of a meaningful, mentally strong life with eternal peace for every individual.

To add more life to the fact that Ayurveda has found its place in the west, down comes the sturdy list of causes that has made the western world to feel the importance of Ayurveda.

  • Self-Realization for a Divine Living: Ayurvedic healing methodology includes a wide range of techniques of which Yoga, Meditation and Rejuvenation of the body and mind with effective Ayurvedic oils have gained wide attention in the West. These forms of practice leads to self-realization thus making one to realize the true purpose of living, paving way to eternal satisfaction and ecstasy of leading a meaningful life. Ayurveda serves its sole purpose of making one to realize self and live in harmony with self and nature thus giving comprehensiveness to human existence.
  • Good for All: Unlike modern medical system, Ayurveda is good for all individuals irrespective of their status of health. With its elegant regime, Ayurveda dignifies the diseased and strengthens the stronger ones leading to health and longevity.

Apart from this, Ayurveda remains as the most natural, less expensive medical system with homemade remedies of defensive nature. Effective utilization of Ayurvedic natural herbs, spices, vegetables and natural Ayurvedic Essential oils in your day to day living will support longevity and help you in the long run.

Ayurveda can be made more efficacious if its real essence is absorbed and utilized effectively. Studies have proved that Ayurveda is effective in the treatment of acute chronic diseases like diabetes and the integration of Ayurvedic Healing system with Modern therapy can pave way for finding a solution for some of the life threatening diseases like cancer.

One final yet valid reason that makes the West fascinated towards Ayurveda is its approach towards the patients that is lifted high with a sense of personal touch and care that is often missing in the western medical system.

As a true believer and benefiter of Ayurveda, I take this opportunity to thank all those strenuous efforts of the invaluable immortals who strived a lot in  bringing the knowledge of Ayurveda to the west that has served numerous people in the past and will continue to serve in the future as well!!!

Thought for the day:

“Natural forces within us are the true healers of disease.” –Hippocrates

Suggested Reading:

  1. Ayurveda: A Comprehensive Guide to Traditional Indian Medicine for the West by Frank John, M.D. Ninivaggi
  2. Balance Your Hormones, Balance Your Life: Achieving Optimal Health and Wellness through Ayurveda, Chinese Medicine, and Western Science by Claudia Welch
  3. Ayurvedic Cooking for Westerners: Familiar Western Food Prepared with Ayurvedic Principles by Amadea Morningstar

Reference Links:

  1. Ayurveda by Wikipedia
  2. Meditation by National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
  3. Differences between Ayurveda and Modern Medicine (Allopathy) by LuzySalud