Kerala Ayurveda–as an alternative treatment
Today living in the cities, we have forgotten what are forefathers gave us. Our forefathers (the great sages and physicians) who studied the human body and ailments to such minute detail and defined various herbs, massage oils, kashayam (oil taken internally), lepas (pastes) and concoctions for treatment. “Ayurveda rejuvenates the mind and body in harmony with nature”, says the Kerala Ayurvedic Treatment Center brochure.
The Kerala Ayurvedic Treatment Center fetches just this philosophy of Ayurveda from Kerala to the urban masses. Even today the malayalee (native of Kerala) will use a conventional Danwantharam Thailam massage before a bath.
“When most people in other parts of India prefer homeopathy as an option to allopathy, the people of Kerala have always shown preference to Ayurveda to a great extent even over allopathy”, states Dr. Warrier, the in–house doctor at the Kerala Ayurvedic Treatment Center. The Kerala–based directors of the Treatment Center decided to take this rich knowledge to urban regions in India. The first Kerala Ayurvedic Treatment Center opened outside Kerala was in 1994 in the bustling metro of Mumbai. In 1999, two outlets were opened within a span of one year in Pune. According to official sources they are gung–ho about taking the idea further away from its home – Kerala.
“Books like Charakasamhita, Sushrutasamhita and Ashtangahridya are well written, it is the way in which they are interpreted or used that differs”, states Dr. Warrier. One tends to ask, “Does it hold sway within the parameters of various interpretations?” Ayurveda states‘¦The Pancha mahabhootas viz. Earth, Water, Fire, Wind or Air and Aakash or Ether are among the 25 elements responsible for the creation of universe. “These mahabhootas are known through their qualities. Whatever structure we see is only a gross form of them. So is our human body”, informs Dr, Warrier. When the dhatus or the three biological forces i.e. vata or the dynamic force, pitta or the dynamic heat and kapha or the force that binds all that is fluid in nature, enter the body, they become functional units or Tridoshas. When the Tridoshas are in equilibrium, the person remains healthy. When the doshas are in imbalance they manifest disease. Kapha–related ailments are of chest and above, while some of the common Pitta–related maladies are skin diseases, arthritis and ulcer. Degenerative diseases like paralysis and Parkinson’s Syndrome are Vata related. “From nowhere can we reach to the body in depth”, says Dr. Warrier about the system. You have to know the qualities of all the elements. In a way we come to know the disease when we are treating the mahabhootas through vata, pitta and kapha– manifestation of the pancha mahabhootas. If kapha is in excess, we have to reduce it. We start from a creation which is nothing, come to a gross level which is a body. There is nothing simple that can be done, he endeavors to explain. “Ayurveda as a science also prescribes certain do’s and don’ts in order to increase life span”, informs Dr. Warrier. The science not only details the best manner in which all activities from how to wash one’s face in the morning to the best way to performing work–related and other activities in our daily routine till we go to sleep in the night; but also earmarks do’s and don’ts for seasonal routines.