AYURVEDA: a fine balance
As grandmothers across India tell their beloved grandchildren, who insist on making extreme choices such as eliminating fat from their diets entirely, “A spoonful of ghee never hurt anyone!” This sentiment captures the heart of Ayurvedic philosophy—everything in moderation.
Unlike more conventional systems of modern medicine, this ancient science does not offer quick fixes and over-the-counter drugs. Practitioners of Ayurveda acknowledge the fact that one size does not fit all. So, what makes people different? What drives the mysterious inner workings of our minds and bodies?
The Ayurvedic universe is founded on the idea of three doshas (fundamental energies)—airy Vata, fiery Pitta, and earthy Kapha. Each of us has a different balance of these primary energies, a combination that governs all of our physical and mental processes. These energies are not static. They alter in response to all kinds of internal and external stimuli—emotions, actions, food, weather, and so on.
There are three main energy states. At a given point in time, you may be in any one of these states:
- Equilibrium—when all the doshas are present in balanced proportions
- Excess—when a particular dosha is excessive
- Depletion—when a particular dosha is lacking
The state of excess or depletion can cause anxiety, digestive issues, congestion, weight gain, aggression, rashes, and a myriad of other concerns. In such a situation, it is important to work towards restoring the delicate balance of energies within oneself
Yogiism: The rebalancing process begins with understanding one’s own unique pattern of doshas. Equipped with a map of our own energies, we can begin to work towards creating that sometimes-elusive fine balance!