Am back with second part of dinacharya. Last post I had briefly touched upon exercise benefits and its contraindications. Further after exercise/Vyayama in dinacharya, Udwartana is indicated. Udwartana is body massage(Abhyanga) done with medicated powders. Udwartana is known to offer various health benefits. Udwartana done after the Vyayama will pacify vitiated Kapha(Water element) dosha, it reduces the fat deposits, enhances body strength and leaves you with radiant skin. Udwartana choorna can be prepared at home with Besan atta or mustard powder mixed with oil and turmeric and to be applied on the body which removes the impurities and cleans the skin pores and imparts moisture, glow and softness to the skin, which is followed by warm water shower after the application.
Benefits of Bathing/Snana-
“Dipanam vrushyamayushyam snanamoorjabalapradham 1
Taking bath enhances your digestive fire, rejuvenates, increases life span, enhances strength and enthusiasm, eliminates- itching, impurities on skin, reduces- fatigue, sweat, thirst, burning sensation and diseases.
One should bathe with hot water or room temperature water?
Taking shower with hot water is beneficial as it increases body strength but the same hot water to wash your hair(head) it will reduce the strength of the hair follicles also cause vision issues.
Taking bath immediately after a meal, causes indigestion
After the bath one has to take meal as per one’s appetite and avoid over eating.
You remember Satvavajaya chikitsa mentioned in my first Ayurveda series?
Here in this dinacharya, Ayurveda also talks about adhering to one’s dharma to obtain happiness which means dinacharya is not just about daily routine in taking of this body but it is also about one’s conduct which again is crucial in preventing diseases. This is termed as Sadvritta
So Ayurveda even specifies about having good friends circle who will guide you in the right direction and stay true to you and not to be part of their circle if they are not one of them. The following points which considered as papa karma as per Ayurveda texts is best avoided for one’s growth.
- Himsa( Physical or mental)
- Stheya( Robbery)
- Anyatakama(Pleasure through immoral means)
- Paishunyam- Hurting other with abusive words
- Parushanruta- Harsh words
- Anruta- False speech/false promises
- Sambinna Alapa- Not standing their ground with their speech and tends to change with situation as per their comfort with selfish motive
- Vyapadam- Killing someone or planning for one
- Abhidya- longing for somebody else’s properties/assets
- Drigviparyaya- To disrespect shastras and elders
” Atmavatsatatam pashyedapi kitapippalikam”
Always consider all beings similar to your own self, even the smallest of the insects or ants never consider them inferior to you, do not harm them and have compassion for all beings.
Who should be respected? Respect- God( Supreme), Cows, Brahmin, Elderly, Guru, Parents, Rulers, Vaidya, Guests
Who should be helped? Help- Those who have no source of livelihood, Who is stricken by grief and diseases. Such people need to be helped with the resources that one has.
One who has approached you seeking help should never be sent back empty handed, never insult them or provoke them.
One should be willing to help even their foes, even when they aren’t helpful. This reminded me of one instance from Ramayana that Lankapati Ravana agrees to perform Yagna/Pooja for Prabhu Sriramachandra at his request before the commencement of the war and even after knowing that the war can turn out to be fatal for him. I do not know if this reference is in line as per Ramayana scripture, please correct me if am wrong.
Stay grounded in any given situation- Happiness or grief. Know the reasons that has given you happiness or caused grief but do not develop hatred towards those situations or reasons that has caused you grief.
“Kale hitam mitam bruyadavisamvadi peshalam”
Speak at the right time, speak comforting words, thoughtful words, speak the truth and that which is pleasant.
How to talk- Initiate the talk, enquire about one’s wellbeing, speak with pleasant mind, well mannered, compassionate, humility, include your friends and family in your happiness. Do not trust all/ everything around you and do not suspect either.
Maintain Secrecy- Do not envy anyone or consider anybody to be one, do not speak about any humiliation that you have faced, do not speak ill of your Guru/King.
Know how to deal with others keeping in mind the nature of people and should deal with them in a manner best pleasing to them and learn the art of dealing with people. It is lokavyavahara- being worldly wise. This might sound like Chanakya neeti, but Ayurveda texts has clear guidelines about the aspects of life- Physical, mental, emotional, Social etc
Do not deviate from Dharma, Artha, Kama, Moksha, do not indulge too much in to sensory pleasures nor restrict them.
In sarvadharma( all activities) adopt balance do not be for or against it.
Bodily Cleanliness- Keep nails short, look presentable, keep you legs clean, maintain personal hygiene, shower regularly, use pleasant fragrance, be well dressed, wear gem stones, wear auspicious herbs and mantras( as amulets).
Self defense/safety- Use Umbrella, wear footwear, keep looking at a distance of four arm length while you walk. If one has to travel at night then go equipped with danda(stick), mouli(head cap/turban), accompanied by an assistant.
Do not tress pass- Holy shrines or samadhi of saints, flag posts or unholy things.
Avoid- Crossing the full flowing river with strong currents, do not go closer to fire or volcanoes, and do not climb on trees if your suspect it to be weak.
Also- Cover your mouth while sneezing/yawning/coughing/laughing, do not dig the ground unnecessarily, do not make improper body gestures, do not pick/blow your nose unnecessarily.
I shall now end the part 2 of dinacharya here and may be would require one more post to complete dinacharya. That said, Ayurveda propagates healthy living in every sphere of life which not only provides physical wellbeing but also helps us work out our karmas without creating/minimizing new karmas to help us evolve spiritually too by being mindful. Ayurveda is a way of life.
See you all in next post:)
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