What is Ayurveda?

‘Ayurveda,’ the ancient system of life and knowledge, took birth in India thousands of years ago. The theory of Ayurveda originated from a deep understanding of the creation of an improved mental and physical health through meditation and other spiritual practices. 

Ayurveda is generally understood as a science of life that describes the important components of life. According to experts, Ayurveda is not only a science of medicine but also includes a number of academic principles of the modern time such as economics, ecology, and sociology. 

History and Philosophy 

  • Ayurveda encompasses a great philosophy and science. It was not developed as a separate system. It has rather been a part of the evolution of knowledge. It is considered the practical integration of Vedic philosophical systems that amalgamated with the measures of health. 
  • According to Ayurveda, the journey of life is sacred. Ayurveda was first discovered in Veda, which is one of the oldest existing literature in the world. It is believed to be more than 3000 years old and is in use even today. 
  • Some of the important Ayurveda techniques like Charaka Samhita, Astangahrdaya, and Sushruta Samhita were said to be compiled in between 1500 BC and 500 AD. 
  • The art of Ayurveda spread around the 6th century BC to the other countries around India and today, its effects can be seen across the globe


An intricate system of healing 

Ayurveda is an intricate system of healing. It is more than just a medical system. It is considered the Science of Life. Just like the plants and animals that live in harmony with nature and follow the inherent laws of Nature to create balance within their beings, we humans, too, need to adhere to the principles of Mother Nature. 

Therefore, to say that Ayurveda helps sustain and improve the health of a person by using the basic principles of nature is justified. This system helps bring the sick individuals back to equilibrium with their true self. 

The philosophy and principles of Ayurveda can help people learn a series of conceptual systems that are characterized by health and disease. According to Ayurveda, there is a strong interconnection between diseases and health and everything that occurs in the emotional and spiritual spheres of life can have a great impact on your personality. There should be perfect harmony between your feelings, thoughts, physical actions and healing to stay healthy. 

Meaning of Ayurveda 

The word ‘Ayurveda’ is derived from two Sanskrit words: ‘Ayu’ meaning ‘life’ and ‘Veda’ meaning ‘having the knowledge of’. Hence, Ayurveda means “The knowledge of life’. Ayu or life is a combination of four vital parts: body, mind, soul and the senses. 

Mind, Body, and Senses 

We have a tendency to identify or take care of only with our physical bodies. We often ignore the mind that underlies our physical structure. Ayurveda believes that our mind cannot just control our thought process; but also assist the body to carry out our daily activities including circulation, digestion, respiration, and elimination. 

The body and the mind have to work in harmony with each other in order to regulate our body system. The mind can assist the body by using a sense of information gathering. You can consider the mind as a computer that receives data from the senses. 

For example; taste and smell are the senses that support the digestive process. When your mind registers that the food is entering the stomach, it passes the signals to the digestive organs to act accordingly to release various digestive juices to promote the process of digestion. 

In this manner, your mind can control and regulate the physical functions of different organs and systems. 

That is why; maintaining a perfect clarity of senses is considered an integral part of allowing the body and mind to integrate their functions for achieving optimum health. 


Ayurveda believes that other than our existence in a physical form combined with our mind and senses; we also exist in a subtle form called the soul. According to Ayurveda, our soul and the underlying self remains unchanged. 

There are many aspects to Ayurveda which are quite unique to this science: 

  • The recommendations of Ayurveda regarding the foods and lifestyle we should follow to stay healthy are different for each patient. This is due to the constitutional model of treatment followed by this science. 
  • It believes there are a few energetic forces around us that influence the nature and our health. These energetic forces are referred to as the Tridoshas. 
  • The treatment in Ayurveda is determined based on the detailed inquiry of symptoms, direct physical examination, observation and the knowledge of herbs and spices received through ancient texts. 
  • Ayurveda sees a strong connection between the mind, soul and the body. Hence, it provides a huge amount of information regarding this relationship and its effect on the emotional, intellectual and physical health of a person.

Objective of Ayurveda

The concepts of Ayurveda have two complementary aims. The first aim is to maintain the health and wellbeing of an individual by recommending specific diet and nutrition, lifestyle habits, hygiene, exercises, and stabilizing techniques.

These dietary and lifestyle habits can enable a person to maintain health and increase his or her life-span.

The second aim is to cure the ailments of those who are sick. This aspect relates to various disorders, their causes, diagnosis, and the therapies to cure them and to prevent a relapse in the future.

Both of these aims are interconnected and comprehensive in their own rights. The primary focus of Ayurveda is to maintain your health from the outset.

Ayurveda aims to achieve complete health for a patient and not just to suppress his or her physical symptoms. The approach is to detect the main cause of the illness and remove it from the roots thereby allowing complete healing to occur.

The understanding of Ayurveda that each human is a unique individual enables this system to address the specific health concerns of patients while offering an explanation to why one patient responds differently than another to any therapy. We hope you will continue exploring Ayurveda to enhance the balance of your mind, body, senses, and soul and gain further insights into the beautiful miracle that we call life.

The information contained in this blog post is intended solely to provide general guidance on matters of interest for the personal use of the reader, who accepts full responsibility for its use. Please consult your physician or other health care professional regarding any treatments for your health issues.


  • January 07, 2019
  • Aruntha Vijay