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The Intersection of Ayurveda and Spirituality: Balancing Mind, Body, and Soul

Updated: Apr 19

Ayurveda means the Knowledge of Life. It is much more than a brilliant system of natural medicine. Discover a framework for a whole new way of being.

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Explore more on the Saumya Blog, selected top Ayurveda blogs and websites to watch.


The Intersection of Ayurveda and Spirituality: Balancing Mind, Body, and Soul



What is Ayurveda? Let’s start from the beginning.


Ayurveda is a Sanskrit word that translates directly as the “knowledge” (veda) of “life” (ayu). Ayurveda is a branch of the Vedic tradition - an ancient Indian spiritual knowledge system, and the oldest wisdom tradition in the world - which is based on the idea that all of life, from the mundane to the majestic, is inherently connected and divine


Ayurveda is often thought of as only one component: Ayurvedic medicine. While Ayurveda is a profound approach to holistic health and healing, this is just one small dot on the vast map of this ancient tradition. Ayurveda is a path, a system of living, a spiritual journey that lasts a lifetime.


Ayurveda uses food as medicine, herbs, and lifestyle practices like meditation and breathwork (pranayama) to balance the dynamic energies within our body – creating harmony throughout our inner and outer worlds.


Enjoy our video, Ayurveda: A Compass For Living


"The Intersection of Ayurveda and Spirituality: Balancing Mind, Body, and Soul. Ayurveda is a comprehensive path that includes a tried and true system of holistic medicine to support a healthy body and mind, so one's spiritual life, can be focused on."

-Veena, Saumya Ayurveda


One of the tools of Ayurveda that supports one's spiritual path is fasting.


block letters spelling fast

Intermittent Fasting in Ayurveda: A Spiritual Approach


While intermittent fasting is a health trend, it is actually a practice that has been around thousands of year and is rooted in Ayurveda. To progress on the spiritual path, we need to be balanced mentally, emotionally and physically.


Spiritual Benefits of Intermittent Fasting



While intermittent fasting is a hot new health trend, it is actually a practice that has been around thousands of year and is rooted in Ayurveda.


Ayurveda is often thought of as one of the oldest holistic systems of natural medicine, and that is an important part as we all need to be mentally and physically healthy. Yet, that system of medicine is only one part of the vast path known as "the knowledge of life." Ayur, life, Veda, knowledge. To know the nature of life itself--that is Ayurveda.


test tubes with plants inside


Today, Ayurveda's Ancient Knowledge of Intermittent Fasting is Now Acknowledged by Modern Science.


John Hopkins Medicine recently rediscovered what Ayurveda has known all along and published Intermittent Fasting: What is it and how does it work?


According to Ayurveda, intermittent fasting does more than burn fat. Ayurveda has known fasting can prevent, and in some cases, reverse conditions and diseases. When there is a gap in the digestive process, it provides critical cleansing time for the body and mind to purify. The brilliant process of cellular purification is compromised when there is a constant supply of food moving from one end of the digestive tract, to the other.


It is only relatively recent that humans had 24/7 access to nearly all foods imaginable. Reflecting on my own ancestors, it was only a generation ago that they grew and raised all their food. Living in a remote area, there was no convenience stores or all night markets.


Raised this way, I observed how to eat seasonally, that food abundance or scarcity ebbed and flowed naturally with the seasons, which built in fasting experiences. The term ritucharya in Ayurveda speaks to this. Ritu means season and charya means rhythm.


Simply put, it is following the natural rhythms of the season year-round. This is in stark contrast to having whatever one may want all the time. When there is a constant supply of foods, and foods that are not produced by a particular season, it can lead to health issues. How is it that in modern life with brilliant medical advances, there are so many chronic diseases? According to Ayurveda, there is a connection.


Digestion consists of four processes: ingestion, digestion, absorption and elimination. What happens when the roadway of the digestive system is constantly processing? (See: Poop Analysis with Ayurveda: What Your Poop Says About Your Health.)


Think of it as a rush hour pile up--all sorts of health problems occur mentally and physically.

It is wonderful that research is highlighting the mental and physical benefits of Ayurvedic intermittent fasting and yet, it doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of what Ayurveda's approach to fasting can do for your spiritual self.


digestive system anatomy

Intermittent Fasting, Ayurveda, and the Digestive System


In Ayurveda, the digestive system is considered to be crucial to a person’s wellness and vitality. When the digestive system, agni, is unable to work optimally, toxins, ama, build up and cause imbalance before eventually leading to disease. Fasting promotes a steady release of those toxins and fosters proper regeneration of energy and digestive power.


For thousands of years, Ayurveda has recommended at least a 12 hour fasting window every day to give the digestive tract adequate time to rest and for cleansing on a cellular to occur. If the digestive tract is never given a break, the all important digestive fire, your agni, (think of this as your sacred fire) becomes imbalanced and can no longer properly digest the food ingested. Fasting is just one of the ways Ayurveda can help improve your digestion and overall health.


block letters spelling spiritual


Intermittent Fasting as a Spiritual Practice


Fasting, in Ayurveda, is not simply intentionally skipping a meal or two. Fasting Ayurvedically, is an extension of practicing pratyahara, withdrawal of the senses —in Sanskrit praty means against and ahara means anything taken into the body. Ayurvedic fasting is a spiritual practice aimed at understanding one’s self and developing spiritual strength.


Ayurveda teaches us that intermittent fasting is not about the food, but about the spaces between the meals. Intentionally skipping a meal is an opportunity to perform tapas, to exercise our discipline and develop spiritual strength.


When we choose to practice pratyahara through intermittent fasting, we deliberately choose what to put into our body, or, in this instance, not put into our body. We create a commitment to not eat and through that experience, we gain determination on our path. It’s a lot like exercising and gaining spiritual muscle.


To learn more, click here.

 

"To know about Ayurveda, contact Veenaji at Saumya Ayurveda --because when it comes to our spiritual life, it is emphasized in the ancient texts to consider what you eat, how you eat, as this supports a solid meditation practice.


Being an expert Ayurvedic doctor, and there are now very few, because it requires knowledge of the scriptures, the medicine, but it also requires a great deal of being a sadhaka. Without being a sadhaka, an Ayurvedic physician is not a true physician.


Because the medicine of Ayurveda is not simply medicine, it is much, much more than simply medicine. The name itself says it, Veda, it is the knowledge, wisdom, to know all about Ayu, life.


Life is complicated.


As one example, digestion itself is a very complex process. An Ayurvedic expert not only sees digestion from a physiological perspective, but also from a sadhana point of view.


The personality is another. There are many complex personality traits. Modern medical science cannot explain it, but an Ayurvedic doctor who is an expert--can tell you, for example, Vishuddha chakra needs to be balanced.


When you consult with Veenaji, then your body, mind, and your pranic body operate optimally and your sadhana, your spiritual life and life becomes easier, and your practice becomes enjoyable.”

--Dr. Panditji Dabral, Ph.D., Sanskrit


Saumya Ayurveda's 3 steps for transforming your life daily with image of a woman meditating by a lake

There is a saying, "The mind is more in the body, than the body is in the mind." The Saumya 3 step meditation process shifts us from fight-flight-freeze mode to rest-restore-relax mode. Give it a try for forty days and observe the changes. The more grounded and relaxed we are, the smoother life flows.


"The breath is the connection between the mind and body, so by training the breath, we become calm, focused, and grounded, we slow down the aging process by decreasing stress. These practices are so simple and easy to have as part of our daily life. We actually feel and look younger."

- Veena, Saumya Ayurveda


1. Learn Diaphragmatic Breathing and Change Your Life. When we re-learn to breath diaphragmatically, we move from the flight-fight-freeze mode, to rest, restore, relaxation mode from where we want and need to live.


2. Daily Guided Practices: 11 minutes in the morning and in the evening, as anchors of your daily Ayurveda routine.



"Choose a couple of practices from the routines that provide you with the greatest support. Perform them while applying our two-minute meditation technique and your mundane tasks, just transformed into a mellifluous meditation. This is meditation applied to daily life." - Veena, Saumya Ayurveda


"Veena was able to help me regain my energy in just a few months and I’m feeling like my “young” self again! I love the food plan she designed for me, and all the supporting practices (am/pm routines, breathing techniques, herbs, and spice mixes) are so enjoyable to incorporate into my day. I highly recommend Saumya Ayurveda if you want to feel better and have more vitality.”

-Molly Rossini, Minnesota


notepad on a desk with client testimonials written on it


“Veena is a treasure of wisdom, support, and encouragement. I have made such progress since working with Veena. Her advice is transformational. In every single conversation and email I learned such valuable information and gained tools that are helping me be my best and healthiest self. I am so grateful I discovered Veena and took the leap to work with her.”

-Jenny Hubbard, New Jersey

 

“I feel greatly improved. Stress fell of like an old hairy coat. I’m just not anxious. Depression is way decreased. I was haunted by anxiety my whole life, and it’s just gone. The mudra, mantra...WOW!


This is so cool! I have regained hope. Something wonderful is taking place. You and your knowledge come to me after a lifetime of searching and prayer. I am forever grateful.” --Mark Hughes, Minnesota

 

“Veena has literally changed my life. I was struggling with mental and physical symptoms that my doctor had no answer for. I thought I was going crazy and just making symptoms up.


With Veena’s guidance, with herbs and diet changes, I soon realized that my symptoms were very real. After making the changes, I made small victories along the way, and became better with each appointment with her.


Now almost 6 months later, I am a completely different person. I still have some things to work on, but with Veena’s help, I know I will be able to take control of my health and not leave it to Western medicine that was giving me little to no help and covering up my symptoms with another medication. Working with Veen has been the best decision I have made for my health. You won’t be disappointed!” -- Maria Fumagalli, San Diego, California


 

“Working with Veena is incredible. She's sees the possibilities that lay dormant in us, and is so patient and kind in sharing her wisdom and tools to help birth those possibilities. As Ayurveda is a living science, it takes conviction and discipline to change habits, to live a different reality.


Veena makes navigating the changes smooth and meaningful, inspiring at every meeting, letting me know that, YES, changes are happening! Thank you, Veena. Many blessings!”

-Kyle Sangster, Minneapolis, Minnesota


woman exploring a map

The Intersection of Ayurveda and Spirituality: Balancing Mind, Body, and Soul is a place to discover and explore your inner world.


We all want to be heard, understood, and cared for as whole beings, not a set of isolated symptoms. True health is more than the absence of disease, which is why Western medicine so often leaves us feeling hopeless and unseen.


Deep down, you already know what you’re searching for: a new framework for living – one that brings your entire being back into balance. With Saumya Ayurveda, you’ll receive individualized guidance to create the physically, mentally, and spiritually vibrant life you crave.


Saumya Ayurveda provides concierge, top-notch, award-winning Ayurveda care. We strive to keep it simple, so you can focus on you! Opt for virtual consultations and we'll come to you.


Our practice model is client focused, we’re not in the retail herb business. We’ll guide you where to order herbs directly online. Our top-shelf Ayurveda oils and herbalized ghees are the best in the land and we’ll ship your care package right to your doorstep.


Our effective multi-appointment consultation packages provide you with experienced Ayurveda care, enthusiastic guidance, and inspiring support.


Explore our personalized services and book your FREE discovery call today. Psst! Our clients say it best – so read and watch our client's stories.


Ayurveda and the Spiritual Path image Veena

Veena is a Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner and meditation teacher, and monk.


She is President Emeritus and teaching faculty of the Meditation Center.


Veena fell in love with the traditional medicine used in her family’s home, learning herbal remedies at her grandmother's knee.


These childhood experiences were the seeds of a lifelong passion. For over 30 years, Veena has dedicated her life to the world’s oldest healing system: Ayurveda.


She draws on this ancient wisdom to help others find their compass to a healthy life – and support those left wanting by Western medicine.


An experienced Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner, Veena’s deep, intuitive knowledge of Ayurveda empowers her clients to reclaim their fullest, most vibrant lives –mentally, physically, and spiritually. Veena individualizes treatment plans to each person, rather than offering a one-size-fits-all approach, so it fits your life and becomes woven in your lifestyle, naturally.



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