Mindfulness and Ayurveda is a term that is getting popular in the present era. When is the last time you ate with mindfulness? Mindfulness is nothing but whatever you are doing – right here and right now with complete dedication to that action.
So, when I said eating mindfully – I was talking about the time when you had calmed down and completely focused on the food you ate enjoying each and every bite of it.
Mindfulness with Ayurveda is a great first step to making lifestyle changes that balance your mood and bodily functions with dedication. When speaking in terms of classical Ayurveda, mindfulness can be correlated to ‘Smriti’. The term Smriti (memory) denotes a wide array of higher intellectual faculties including memory, cognition, past sense perception, mastery in mind.1Smriti is related to Atma(soul) and Mana (Mind). Ayurveda often relates or addresses physical wellbeing along with nutrition, mindful exercise, and daily routine, including proper sleep. Emotional well-being is addressed with stress management practices as well as emotional awareness and regulation training, based on principles of mindfulness. Spiritual well-being is addressed through the practices of meditation, yoga, breathing, and a teaching perspective that consciousness is the basis of existence within which physical form and mental thoughts arise.2 In short, Ayurveda involves addressing physical, emotional, and spiritual components of life with tools and practices to support all these areas. This practice of addressing the physical, emotional and spiritual components of life is said to be practicing Mindfulness with Ayurveda.
Journey into healing
How to attain mindfulness with Ayurveda? In the healing tradition of Ayurveda, there are practices that address physical health, such as nutrition and mindful physical movement, as well as emotional health with an emphasis on shifting perspective from an ego-based perspective to one that is based on a larger sense of self.2
- Dinacharya (Daily Regimen) – Following a set of guidelines from waking up at Brahma Muhurta to sleep. How can s systematic daily routine help you? Routine helps to establish balance in one’s constitution. It also regularizes a person’s biological clock, aids digestion, absorption and assimilation, and generates self-esteem, discipline, peace, happiness, and longevity.
- Ritucharya – Ayurveda has depicted various rules and regimens (Charya), regarding diet and behavior to acclimatize seasonal enforcement easily without altering body homeostasis. The prime principle of the Ayurvedic system of medicine is the preventive aspect, can be achieved by the change in diet and practices in response to change in climatic conditions. This is a very important aspect of preventive medicine as mentioned in Ayurvedic texts.
- Panchakarma– The principles of Panchakarma, one of the unique karma, known through five thousand years mentioned in the Ayurvedic literature to detoxify and purify the body. None other medical sciences have the knowledge to clean or to detoxify the mind, body, and soul. Panchakarma not only cleans the body from inside but it also refreshes both mind and soul by its karma. It has both preventive and curative mechanisms. The word panchakarma constitutes 2 words – Pancha which means five, and Karma which means action/Procedure. The therapy involves fivefold procedures along with preparatory procedures and post procedures which cleanses the body physically and mentally.
- Yoga and Meditation – Yoga and meditation, which was once considered to be exclusively an Eastern practice, often associated with religion and spiritualism, has become a more scientific modality in recent years and is accepted for routine practice in many parts of the world. Mindful meditation, Kundalini meditation, Transcendental meditation, etc. are some of the popular forms of meditation.
- Implementing these aspects in everyday life can help you reduce stress, improve well-being, and find more joy in life.
- Amin, H., & Sharma, R. (2015). Nootropic efficacy of Satvavajaya Chikitsa and Ayurvedic drug therapy: A comparative clinical exposition. International journal of yoga, 8(2), 109–116. doi:10.4103/0973-6131.158473
- Patel, S., Klagholz, S., Peterson, C. T., Weiss, L., Chopra, D., & Mills, P. J. (2019). Psychosocial Effects of a Holistic Ayurvedic Approach to Well-being in Health and Wellness Courses. Global advances in health and medicine, 8, 2164956119843814. https://doi.org/10.1177/2164956119843814