Dr. Lad said something interesting at last year’s Ayurveda conference:
"Ayurveda is Hindu medicine. I’m sorry, but it is."
The sooner we all talk about this, the sooner Ayurveda can be considered a complementary medicine in the mainstream.
Let’s admit it. There is a Hindu underpinning to Ayurveda, to this site, to my self.
It’s true that this might upset some. I know of someone who will not go to an Ayurvedic practitioner, although she needs help, because she feels it contradicts her Christian beliefs.
Then there are the comments made in the local paper that yoga shouldn’t be available in community recreation facilities, because it is a religious undertaking.
I’m stunned by charges such as these. At first, my response is a bit of stammering.
Maybe because they are a little bit true, but only by a speck. Only by a flick of superficialities.
It’s feels like someone calling The Theory of Relativity German or Jewish.
Looking deeper, I am reminded that the number zero and the whole of trigonometry were once religious works made by Muslims long ago. (Math is predicated on a lot more belief than you may realize.)
Does that mean they are not true?
Pythagoras was first and foremost a mystic.
Shall we not teach math in public schools?
In the same way, yoga, meditation, Ayurveda, whether practiced by a Sikh, a Quaker, or an atheist is still TRUE. The body will get fitter, the mind more still.
Both are required in any faith for happiness.
Health is the best foundation for the aims of human life. (Charaka, 1)
And to me it is not surprising that FAITH is required to reach far into the universe and find these truths, forming the core of our shared knowledge and our common beliefs.
[Edited: Dr. Lad at a talk last week said, if I may paraphrase, that Chinese medicine has been around for 200 years in our country and acupuncture is accepted. With time, he seemed to say, Ayurveda will be too.]