The beauty is in the details: Why Ayurveda is not just some diet plan
How is it possible to expound on the details that go into the specific understanding of the qualities that go into making one individual from another and explain how those are the same details that occupy all space and time and matter? This is Ayurveda. The science of life. It is a just one of the many vedic sciences that are absolute truths of self that underlie the mysteries of existence. This is very hard for most to swallow in the Western paradigm where we have been brought up with a paradigm that nothing is absolute and everything changes with new found discoveries. What we don’t know in the west is that many of these discoveries have been “discovered” way back in history of other cultures. We are blind only to what we have been taught and ted to be well frogs.
Ayurveda is a system of living that awakens us to truth, self, awareness of our place in the cosmos and how we are responsible for our own health and not blaming other stuff like germs, bacteria, and viruses for our ills. This is also hard for Westerners to swallow when the Western model is that disease happens to you and with how allopathic medicine has us afraid of everything outside of us yet we have hardly any relationship to our self at the same time. You don’t just happen to become ill or diseased, it is something you have built over time and the choices you have made, knowingly or unknowingly.
So how do you start to understand specific categories of the entire universe? Slowly and methodically.
There are so many permutations and combinations to understand that we water things down to serve it to the masses and in this it loses all depth, acuity, and truth.
As an example, let’s take honey. In the West anything is okay to do at anytime with no consequences. With knowledge and experience of that knowledge comes the wisdom.
Honey by itself is a tonic, but if heated or mixed with ghee in equal quantity it becomes poisonous and will cause death.
It is beneficial to those of a kapha (earth and water) constitution but harmful to those of a vata (air and ether) constitution.
It is beneficial in the natural constitution of a marshy environment but harmful in desert lands.
It is prescribed for winter but prohibited in the summer.
It is beneficial for children but harmful for the old.
If taken in small quantities it has good effects but harmful if taken excessively.
If not properly digested in the stomach and intestines, it leads to consequences and will go against any line of treatment.
If taken with Indian Nightshade (Salanum Indicum Linn) and Moraceae or commonly know as Monkey Jack (Artocarpus Lakoocha) it causes death, effects strength, complexion, energy and lustre.
Not only that but the Ayurvedic texts expound upon different varieties of honey and their distinct qualities and thus their different effects.
so basically it has numerous effects according to its various combinations and the list does go on.
This just an example of the depth of ayurveda in just one substance. This detail is with all substances, not just what one substance does with another but there is an understanding as to why that lies underneath it all within all substances. This is the study of Dravyaguna in Ayurveda. It is just one of the limbs of this system.
All in all Ayurveda says that all disease is created of only three types: Over utilization, under utilization and non-utilization of: the sense organs with objects, actions related to speech mind and body, and time or transformation as in the seasons of the year. It pretty much says it all.
Today with all the ideas and theories that people come up with in the name of health is devoid of this deep knowledge. It is within these details that are missed that you find the reasons why the american nutritional scheme always is changing with a new diet fad every few years and that a new fad supplement is good until just years later it is found to be bad. It is not that the western science is getting better and thus the change of the diets but rather the lack of being able to see deeply and conversely being able to see someone as an individual that needs to be treated as such.
Ephedra which is a controlled substance now, has been used in Ayurveda for more than 5000 years and it was not until the western excessive public got their hands on it that it was subjected to excessive use and banned due to deaths.
Health is an individual thing. Not one substance is good for one and good for all. It is subjective to many factors that are not taken into account in the western paradigm.