Ayurveda and Yoga - Two Inseparable Sisters
Ayurveda and Yoga are two sister sciences of the same great Vedic knowledge that encompasses all of human life and the entire universe. It is important to understand the respective roles of Ayurveda and Yoga in the Vedic system. Yoga and Ayurveda are not two separate but closely related healing disciplines of India. Each has its unique place and function, and each overlaps into the other on various levels. Once a yoga teacher asked an ayurvedic doctor about the relationship between yoga and ayurveda. His simple explanation was, “Ayurveda is the science and yoga is the practice of the science.”
As per classical Vedic study, Ayurveda is the Vedic system developed specifically for healing purposes. Yoga is the Vedic system of spiritual practices. All Vedic spiritual practice involves some form of Yoga practice.
Ayurveda which translates as "knowledge of life," dates back 5,000 years to the ancient Sanskrit texts, the Vedas. It's a system of healing that examines physical constitution, emotional nature, and spiritual outlook in the context of the universe.
The term Yoga itself means to unite, combine, harmonize or integrate. A truly yogic approach is inherently an integrative approach, harmonizing body, prana, senses, mind and consciousness. It cannot be reduced to the body alone. A yogic approach to healing is not a specialization or a side-line technique but requires a synthesis of all levels and aspects of healing. That is why classical Yoga has an eightfold approach from life-style practices and values through asana, pranayama to samadhi. If we reduce Yoga to asana, we are not practicing Yoga but falling into the same trap of mainly focusing on the outer material reality and losing track of the inner reality of prana, mind and consciousness.
It is important to reintegrate Yoga and Ayurveda in order to bring out the full healing and spiritual potential of each. Bringing Ayurveda into Yoga provides a yogic and Vedic system of medicine to allow for the full healing application of all aspects of Yoga. It provides a diagnosis and treatment in harmony with Yoga philosophy, as well as a diet and herbal treatment that follows the spiritual approach of Yoga. Bringing Yoga into Ayurveda adds a spiritual and psychological dimension to Ayurvedic treatment, without which Ayurveda tends to get reduced to a physical model in which its full Vedic healing powers cannot be easily realized.
Ayurveda provides the appropriate life-style recommendations for Yoga practice, as well as the background to unfold the full healing potential of all aspects of Yoga. Yoga provides the spiritual and psychological basis for Ayurveda and its higher applications.
Combining Yoga and Ayurveda in their full applications and in the greater context of Vedic science offers a complete system of well-being for body, mind and consciousness, such as perhaps has no parallel anywhere else in the world. It can become the prime force of planetary healing that is so desperately needed today. It can add a spiritual and preventative dimension to modern medicine as well as adding important new keys for the understanding of disease and for applying natural therapies that can reduce the growing cost of high tech medicine.
Ayurveda and Yoga Conference
The Art of Living Retreat center in Boone, NC, USA will host a wonderful conference – “Ayurveda and Yoga for Optimum Health” from July 4-6 2014. This conference is being organized by AAPNA – Association of Ayurvedic Professionals of North America with the support of The Art of Living Foundation, The SKY Foundation, Amrit Yoga, and California Association of Ayurvedic Medicine. The conference will give a great opportunity to understand both these sciences from many renowned speakers and legends of this field.
The 3-day conference will be inaugurated by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is a humanitarian and spiritual leader, an ambassador of peace and human values. He is also the founder of The Art of Living. He has made pioneering contribution since many years to preserve these two sciences. Art of Living also runs a world class Ayurveda college and hospital in Bangalore in Southern India. Recently it has also established Sri Sri University in Odhisha, India which also teaches courses in Yoga and Naturopathy.
The eminent Ayurvedic and Yogic Scholars at the conference includes – Dr. David Frawley, Yogini Shambhavi, Mother Maya Tiwari, Yogi Amrit Desai, Shunya Pratichi Mathur, Dr. Suhas Kshirsagar, Dr. Vivek Shanbhag, Yogi Devkrishna Avadhooth etc.
More than five hundred ayurvedic and yogic practitioners and students, teachers are likely to participate in this conference.
The conference highlights include:
1. Blessings and Inauguration Speech by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
2. 3-day multi-track events
3. 8 Keynote Presentations
4. 15 general lectures on Ayurveda & Yoga
5. 20 workshops on various topics of Ayurveda & Yoga Therapies
6. 10 workshops on Morning Meditation, Yoga, and Chanting
7. Special 90-minutes presentation by Legally Mine
8. Sattvic Vegetarian Meals
9. 20 hours CEUs Certificate toward AAPNA membership renewal
10. Networking with ayurveda, yoga, integrative health professionals
More information about the conference can be found on www.artoflivingretreatcenter.org
- Dr Sejal Shah, Art of Living Faculty, Conference Coordinator
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