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Explore the healing wisdom of Ayurveda & learn to live a more balanced life.

THE SIX PHILOSOPHIES

THE SIX PHILOSOPHIES

{A Brief History}

Ayurvedic philosophy stems from the Shad Darshan -- The Six Philosophies of Life. 

The system was developed by ancient sages from scriptures, such as the Vedas, which are among the most ancient accumulations of recorded knowledge on the planet.

There are four Vedas, each with a sub, or 'upa', VedaAyur-Veda is an Upa-Veda.

Initially, the wisdom of the Vedas, and specifically of Ayurveda, was an oral tradition - sharing knowledge from one soul to another and embracing the importance of the vibration of sound.

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Ayurvedic knowledge does not come from the mind, but was born out of the meditation-induced revelations of enlightened rishis ('seers').  It was passed down through sutras, small phrases of highly concentrated teachings which are meant to provoke unseen knowledge (ideally under the guidance of a teacher).  A sutra can be compared to a seed holding an entire tree tree in unmanifest form.

Although no longer in physical existence, the first major Ayurvedic text was written during the 5th century BCE.

The Six Philosophies of Life (Shad Darshan), provide a means to orient in reality, to calm the disorientation of human existence and to build a foundation of truly seeing.  These philosophies are derived from the love of Truth. 

Of the six Shad Darshan, Shankya, Nyaya & Vaisheshika set up an understanding of the physical world, while Mimamsa, Yoga & Vedanta use inner observation to navigate external reality.

1) Sankya sets a foundation in the 24 Principles in Manifestation of the Universe, providing a framework for origins of existence based on micro & macro organisms.

In Ayurveda, Sankya reminds us to be the observer of our own emotions; to be the dweller dwelling in the temple that is our body.

2) Nyaya defines 4 Sources of Valid Knowledge by embracing the idea of Cause & Effect.  This philosophy finds logic in perception, interference, comparison & testimony. 

Ayurveda incorporates the teachings of Nyaya as we learn to listen to the honest wisdom of our bodies and to apply that wisdom to our potential doshic imbalances.

3) Vaisheshika based on the 9 Causative Substances, which include the five elements (ether, air, fire, water, earth), time, direction, soul & mind.

The Ayurvedic system of doshas measures balance in terms of the 5 elements and their interactions with one another.  Time is seen as a factor that causes change, and direction describes the function of a particular dosha.

4) Mimamsa is a philosophy of bhakti, or devotion, to the Universal Spirit.  It embraces the notions of dharmic duty, or action through awareness.

Ayurveda adopts the ritual component of Mimamsa through various demonstrations of fasting, offerings and candle burning.

5) Yoga follows an 8 Limb Path toward the union of mind, body & soul. 

Ayurveda finds great therapeutic value in the discipline of yoga, which not only works to quiet an imbalanced mind, but also to deepen one's connection with the physical body.  Yoga asana (postures) literally create a biochemical change in the body.

6)  Vedanta values wisdom over conventional knowledge, as a means to expand consciousness.

In Ayurveda, we find space to look within ourselves for answers; to observe our own personal emotions and reactions.

 

 

RESOURCES:

Fundamental Principals of Ayurveda Vol. 1

by Dr. Vasant Lad

AYURVEDIC ORIGINS

AYURVEDIC ORIGINS

DOSHA BASICS

DOSHA BASICS