Integration with Indian Traditional Sciences

Dr. Vaishali Pavan Mali
M.D (Samhita); Ph.D.(Ayurved), B.A. (Sanskrit),                                CHRF(ICMR), PGDYE(IPGT&RA).
Research Fellow (DHR)

Assistant Professor,
Department of Samhita-Siddhant
Ch. Brahm Prakash Ayurved Charak Sansthan, New Delhi.

Dr. Sathya N Dornala
M.D (AYU/KC – Gold Medalist); M.S (Psychotherapy & Counselling)
PGDHHM (IGNOU), Ph.D (Panchakarma)(NIA)
CHRF (ICMR), Vaidya-Scientist Fellow (TDU-HST)

CMO-NFSG (Ayurveda)- Panchakarma Specialist
Resident Medical Superintendent (RMS)
Swami Vivekanand Ayurvedic Panchakarma Hospital
(Municipal Corporation of Delhi)

“Our culture, our traditions, our language are the foundations upon which we build our identity” (Anonymous), this particular quote aptly suits India. India is renowned for its unique diversity of cultures, traditions, and languages. Ancient India was called “VishwaGuru”, because, it was India, that first showed the path of civilization to the whole world by dominance and excellence in different knowledge systems.

“Knowledge is power” is a popular proverb, which means that knowledge is more powerful than physical strength, and no great work can be done without knowledge. No individual or nation can prosper without knowledge. This is true that currently world economy is being driven by a knowledge base i.e., a Knowledge-driven economy. The government of India, for the first time, gave due weightage to Indian Knowledge Systems in National Education Policy 2020; to inculcate a sense of pride in our unique legacies that is sustainable and strive for the welfare of all.
Ministry of Education has created an innovative cell, Indian Knowledge Systems (IKS) at AICTE, New Delhi with an aim to Preserve (by documentation of the oral knowledge/digitalization of the manuscripts/ancient texts), Protect (Intellectual property rights) and Promote interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research on all aspect of IKS for societal application.

Solutions for many of the world’s problems lie in Indian Knowledge Systems. Eighteen thematic areas are identified under the domain of IKS. Interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research on the individual themes of IKS is conducted and the outcomes are integrated then it’s for sure that, India shall regain its intellectual leadership and once again emerge as a ‘VishwaGuru’.

Ayurveda is considered under ‘Holistic medicine and wellness’ theme of IKS. Ayurveda, an Indian traditional healthcare knowledge system, is considered a soft power tool along with Yoga (Nature journal). In this era of globalization where lifestyle and dietary food patterns are changing drastically, we are inviting a range of new disorders, threatening our health. In such a scenario it is pertinent to explore and establish the interrelationship among various Indian traditional sciences to offer comprehensive, nonreductionist, and holistic healthcare. Ayurveda speaks about physical, mental, spiritual, and social well-being & personalized, preventive, protective, promotive, predictive, and participatory level of healthcare. Exploring the interlinkages and cooperation between these diverse knowledge sciences with Ayurveda will contribute immensely to effective healthcare solutions.

The scientific literature of Ayurveda traces ample evidence establishing its association with parallel ancient sciences. Astronomy is the study of the universe and of objects that exist naturally in space, such as the moon, the sun, planets, and stars. Astrology studies the impact of these objects on human life. Astrology is developed as one of the six auxiliary disciplines, connected with the study of the Vedas. Astronomy principles have an impact on the foundational structure of Ayurveda. By use of the mathematical theory of Astrology, one can predict the chronicity and future prognostic aspect of disorders in advance. This will help a physician to take the necessary steps in preventing such conditions. Likewise exploring references from the scientific literature of Ayurveda and Astrology, and further integrating that knowledge will be a most appreciable step to finding holistic personalized healthcare solutions for many grievous conditions of mankind.

Vastu Shastra, the science of Indian Architecture is one of the ancient teachings from the Indian civilization. Indian architecture is based on directional impact, the impact of five elements, and the structure of a building. It tells how a building should be planned to channel the positive energy in our lives. Vastu harmonizes nature’s powerful energy sources, such as the sun, moon, wind, light, thermal, earth, electric, magnetic, and cosmic energy. Thus this traditional system of Vastu architecture supports promoting mental and physical health. We encountered many citations where ancient Ayurveda scientists used this science of architecture during healthcare delivery. May it be building a structure for Swedan and various Panchakarma procedures or building a special structure (Kuti) for Rasayan purposes, Ayurveda physicians have used the principles of Vedic architecture effectively.

Indian Music is one of the oldest musical traditions in the world. Since the Vedic period music has been an integral part of Indian tradition. The ‘Samveda’ is full of music. Music has a proven connection with the human mind, body, and soul. It influences all levels of human existence. Sounds create not just emotions, they also change the very chemistry of your system. In Ayurveda, Trigunas is considered a psychological manifestation of Tridoshas. The effective use of music therapy will impact the person’s mental health and thus possibly modify physical health also. In classical music, a specific Raga (a special type of music) is assigned for a specific time of day or night. The relevance of the time theory of Raga in clinical settings with its impact on Tridosha will be a new area of exploration. Effects of sounds on fetuses have been well recognized. Prenatal music has proven a positive association with neurobehavioral outcomes. Adopting music of science in conjunction with Ayurveda principles will open up many doors to be a part of the health care delivery system. This field can be explored and researched effectively with the help of the science of music. Exploring the interrelationship among these various dimensions of Indian Traditional sciences will surely open the doors for sustainable holistic health care.

The objective of this blog is to explore various dimensions of integration of Ayurveda with parallel Indian Traditional Knowledge Systems. India is one of the oldest civilizations in the world with a rich cultural heritage and strong tradition of sciences. Since the ancient Vedic ages, Indian scholars have exhibited mastery over knowledge across the spectrum.  The Indian subcontinent contains a fascinating array of knowledge systems and practices. Indian traditional sciences comprise Ayurveda, Yoga, psychology, philosophy, Jyotish (astronomy and astrology), Unani, Sangeetam (music), Vastu (architecture), mathematics, linguistics, and oral traditions of India. 

Integration of Ayurveda with IKS will become the foundation for One health i.e., Meta-health.