I recently saw an influential Ayurvedic person from USA posting in social media – “Is Kerala Ayurvedic methods just a hype or is there any real science behind it?” The flavour of the question leaned towards Keralian therapies being just a marketing strategy.
I have seen many south Indian Ayurvedic people crying foul against metallic content usage in Ayurvedic medicines by north Indians. So, both these two different school of thoughts cross each other’s lines from time to time.
Kerala Ayurveda practitioners have based their practice on Ashtanga Hrudayam, which is one among the three major Ayurvedic treatises. They also follow many locally written Authentic Ayurveda text books such as Sahasrayogam and many Malayalam language text books such as Yogagrantham etc.
Read related: Is Kerala Ayurveda Treatment Different From Mainstream Ayurveda?
North Indian Ayurveda practitioners follow more of Charaka and Sushruta along with many recent text books such as Bhaishajya Ratnavali, Ayurveda Sara Sangraha etc. So, use of metallic preparations is more in North India.
Use of oils and variants of massage – sweating therapies such as Takradhara, Shirodhara, Pizhichil, Kizhi etc are more in south India.
Read related: Introduction To Rasashastra: Using Metals And Minerals To Heal
Both these Ayurvedic styles have some things in common such as –
Both of them follow
Panchakarma techniques of detoxification,
Rasayana anti ageing therapy,
Vajikarana aphrodisiac therapy
Kashayas, tablets, capsules etc as medicines.
I have seen northies ridiculing Ashtanga Hrudayam that it is not authentic and some south people ridiculing the other two Brihatrayees.
So, which one is great? – Northern Ayurveda or southern?
Before even trying to answer this question, let me state that this question itself is wrong. There is no need to answer this question. This question should not exist at all. We need not fight for the sake of bragging.
Ayurveda is not about winning arguments, Ayurveda is not about judging which text book is great over the other. Ayurveda is about helping people to live healthy lives with our knowledge and experience.
There are many ways of treating a disease. It can be through massage etc therapies or it can be through metallic preparations, it can be through pure herbal medicines etc. As long as it is helping people to lead a healthy life, we should not worry about which one is greater.
In fact, we should learn and adopt the therapies and medicines that are followed in different regions. This helps to increase our tools, knowledge and armory to fight new set of diseases. This way, we can help more and more patients with Ayurveda.
Already, Ayurveda and Ayurvedic people are pounded, hammered, ridiculed, condemned within India and around the world. Ayurvedic doctors everywhere are ridiculed, Indian Medical Association has declared that Ayurvedic graduates cannot conduct surgery, CNN India conducted an under cover operation over BAMS doctors present in ICU of hospitals.
There are umpteen number of restrictions for Ayurveda practice in USA, Europe, Japan, Germany, UK, Australia etc.
Under such a hostile condition and situations, if we are not helping each other, if we are not expanding our knowledge by mastering a variety of therapies, if we do not support each other, we will be further hammered. The total cause of Ayurveda could fail because of our stupid useless arguments!
Please remember if you are wasting time in one such argument, you are denting the cause of Ayurveda in a micro level.
I would go on and say, we Ayurvedic people should be open and supportive about, not only different Ayurveda practice styles, but we should also support other natural sciences such as Homeopathy, Siddha, Unani, Natuopathy, Yoga etc.
More we learn, more we adapt, more we appreciate, more we practice, better for us, better for Ayurveda and better for the public.
Together….. we can!