Foundational Principles: The Integrative Ayurveda Multi-Modality Approach
1. Enlivening the Inner Intelligence of the Body
Ayurveda holds that underlying all natural processes is a field of pure intelligence and organizing power – called Veda. This universal field at the basis of all Natural Law also manifests as the body’s inner intelligence and source of all developmental and healing processes.
This inner healing ability of the body spontaneously orchestrates a myriad of self-repair mechanisms in response to any imbalance. The main goal of the Integrative AyurVeda approach is to create health from within by enlivening the inner intelligence of the body.
2. A Personalized Medicine Approach
Integrative Ayurveda is personalized medicine. Every individual has their own unique body constitution or mind-body type. Integrative Ayurveda practitioners are trained to diagnose body constitution as the first step in assessing their patients/clients.
The practitioner then recommemds a treatment or prevention program that is personalized for the individual’s body constitution as well as their underlying imbalances. Rather than treat the disease, Ayurveda treats the whole person and the root imbalances at the basis of the disease. Several people with the same condition might be prescribed very different sets of recommendations.
3. Treating the Root Cause of Disease
Ayurveda aims to diagnosis and treat the root causes of disease by:
a. determining the imbalances in the body’s inner intelligence at the source of physical disorders
b. removing the lifestyle and dietary risk factors contributing to disease
4. Coordinating a Multi-Modality Approach
Having powerful multi-modality tools is only useful to the degree the clinician also has knowledge of how to coordinate their use. Over thousands of years Ayurveda has developed detailed protocols for coordinating a multi-modality approach to complex patients with multiple symptoms.
Mind-body Medicine — The Foundation of the Integrative Ayurveda Approach
Maharishi AyurVeda draws on a truly Vedic approach to mind-body medicine by using the essence of Vedic Meditation –the Transcendental Meditation (TM) technique. During TM the individual transcends through the levels of the mind in the simplest and most direct way to the experience the field of inner intelligence at the source of thought – pure consciousness.
This process creates two universally positive influences on healing within the body:
1. First deep rest and it’s powerful rejuvenation is created throughout the system during transcending.
2. Secondly it is a major theme in the Ayurveda that having our conscious attention go to an area of the body or mind enlivens that area. The use of attention is the key to Vedic meditation. During the TM technique the conscious attention flows through all the levels of one’s inner intelligence and eventually settles in the source of intelligence – the field of pure consciousness at the source of thought.
This ‘transcending” process – the flow of attention through all the levels of the mind to pure consciousness within, is Ayurveda’s single most powerful technique to enliven the healing ability of the body.
The TM technique has become one of the most scientifically studied meditation techniques in the world with more than 380 peer-reviewed research studies published in more than 160 scientific journals describing a wide range of benefits.
Ayurveda describes most disease as originating in mental disorder or mental “mistakes”. According to Ayurveda essentially all disease is the result of “pragyaparadha” – translated as “the mistake of the intellect”.
According to Ayurveda the ultimate “mistake of the intellect” is the conscious mind losing contact with its source in the field of pure consciousness within.
Diet is the key physical approach of Ayurveda and includes proper digestion, and gut health. Integrative Ayurveda course participants learn foundational approaches to optimize diet, digestion, assimilation and elimination. This includes detailed dietary plans for different constitutions and imbalances.
Ayurveda provides extensive knowledge about two aspects of lifestyle or “daily routine”.
- Understanding the natural rhythms and cycles that support health in the body. Ayurveda provides instruction in how to maintain balanced routines of eating, sleeping, exercise and elimination to be in tune with Nature’s cycles.
- Ayurveda adds powerful rejuvenative procedures that can be included in one’s daily routine to acheive optimum health.
Ayurveda contains the largest herbal compendium of any system of traditional medicine. The Maharishi Ayurveda Personal Wellness Course familiarizes participants with the major individual, generic, Ayurvedic herbs.
The Maharishi AyurVeda Personal Wellness Course includes instructions on use of spices for nutrition, cleansing, and balancing of Vata, Pitta and Kapha. The course also includes instruction on the use “spice water infusions” to make the balancing influence of spices reach more deeply into the tissues.
The buildup of toxins which block the channels of circulation and communication is considered to be an imbalance at the basis of most chronic conditions. Ayurveda recommends a wide variety of dietary and physical medicine cleansing protocols to help the body remove this root cause of chronic conditions.
The most powerful cleansing approaches in Ayurveda are the in-residence treatments of Panchakarma, which include daily administration of herbalized oil massage, heat treatments and elimination procedures.
Ayurveda provides detailed instruction on the daily use of self-administered massage for prevention and rejuvenation. Instruction includes the types of strokes used on different parts of the body and the choosing of the most approriate massage oil.
Ayurveda contains a deep knowledge of the effects of essential oils and aromas.
Music Therapy – “Gandharva Veda”
The melodies of the Vedic music called Gandharva Veda can be used to help bring the individual in harmony with natural rhythms in nature and help rebalance the physiology.
Marma Point Therapy – Vital Point Therapy
Ayurveda contains detailed knowledge of the network of biological intelligence in the body.
This therapy uses specific massage and essential oils to enliven the main nexus points through which biological intelligence and the healing force operate in different areas of the body.
Maharishi AyurVeda contains unique knowledge of how to use recitation of various aspects of Veda and Vedic Literature to enliven the inner intelligence responsible for proper functioning of different areas of the body.
Practice of Self-Pulse Diagnosis for Healing
The Maharishi Ayurveda Personal Wellness Course includes instruction of how to practice Ayurveda self-pulse diagnosis in a way that creates a powerful enlivenment of the body’s inner intelligence.
Healthy Buildings and Architectural Design
The Vedic tradition contains an extremely valuable body of knowledge as to the construction of healthy buildings. The Vedic Rishis experienced the influence of different orientation of architectural design on the state of balance and imbalance of Vata, Pitta and Kapha. This body of Vedic knowledge is called “Sthapatya Veda” or “Vastu” and is an important part of the Integrative Ayurveda Training Program.
Ayurveda recommends different levels of exercise for different body types. It also delineates the best times of day for exercise, the recommended level of exertion and the types of side-effects that can come from over-exercise.
Yoga and Ayurveda are sister sciences in the Vedic tradition. Ayurveda incorporates Yoga asanas as part of it’s recommended daily routine and includes descriptions of which postures can bring balance to Vata, Pitta or Kapha. Maharishi Yoga asanas instruction also specifies the proper way to move the attention during different postures to bring about maximum healing and balance.
Pranayama – Vedic Breathing Practices
The pranayama breathing techniques of the Vedic tradition are included in the practice of Ayurveda and pranayama practice is considered part of a proper Ayurvedic morning routine.