Although the breadth and scope of practice is vast, Ayurveda is particularly well suited for the treatment and relief of chronic diseases.
By definition, there is a prolonged timescale (chronicity) involved in such conditions and the aetiopathology (cause and pathway) are often either missed, deemed inconsequential or neglected completely. Whilst the focus is on treatment of disease, it seems that the process that took us there is often ignored.
If the causes of disease are not removed; be it bad diet, excessive intake of damaging substances or deleterious behaviour, there is no possible way that one can obtain long term health. Symptoms can of course be treated, but it is inevitable that illness will return again and again until the root is removed.
We have an innate acceptance of these decrees in nature; In our gardens we prune the trees and divide our plants. We take care to feed and address the pH of the soil for each plant (as an individual) and remove the pests and all traces of disease, should they occur. If our tomatoes have blight or powdery mildew, we would certainly not rid them of the disease only to return to the same dank spot, which cultured the rot originally.
We have somehow lost our connection to our place, as a part of this natural law and, it seems, we maybe think that (for us) these rules need not apply – we can fast track our way to health by obliterating disease as it occurs and we can carry on consuming whatever we want, whenever we want, in the meantime. I must stress (at this point) that there is NO JUDGEMENT – we are all guilty, in varying degrees, of this behaviour!
As well as treating specific conditions with targeted herbs and preparations, Ayurveda addresses bad lifestyle choices and food habits, which over time can cause disease, pain , stress and unhappiness (through accumulation) or may be aggravating factors for long term symptoms.
Through the use of specific herbs to break down and remove these accumulations whilst adjusting the diet to suit. The digestive fire (agni) is assessed and adjusted according to the individual.
When in good health, Ayurveda offers a system to maintain health and to live in harmony with the environmental and seasonal changes which can effect us on a daily basis.
Chronic disease seems to be considered “a given” in our world. Many are resigned to the fact that they must live with symptoms, which, at the nagging best will diminish the simple joy of every day life and at worst can be debilitating and often intensely painful – consigning many to a life on pain killers and anti depressants on top of other medicines prescribed for their particular condition.
There is no doubt that Modern Conventional (Western) Medicine is one of mankind’s major success stories. It has prolonged and given life to many who would have otherwise perished and is still the best treatment for acute and severe disease.
There is, however, room for a coexistence between the modern medicine that we so readily accept and the herbal traditions that have been practised for thousands of years across every continent, with well documented and known benefits.