The three pillars of ayurveda are three vital concepts that should be considered the most important in ayurveda. By following these three pillars, the overall state of health and contentment remains balanced. These are the keys for a happy, healthy life:
- Sleep is vital to your well-being. Sleep rejuvenates the body, and allows the body to heal itself on a deep level. In Ayurveda, sleep is considered the first most important thing you need in order to stay healthy. Try to sync your sleep patterns with the natural rhythms of the Sun as much as possible. Ideally, you should wake upon sunrise, and start to get ready for sleep at sundown. While this is ideal, it can be hard, given our adaptation to the Western lifestyle. With this in mind, the best thing to do would be to observe regular bedtime and wake time routines. It is an epidemic that people don’t value their sleep enough in today’s world. It is also important that your sleeping space and pre-sleep routine is also valued and practiced with mindfulness and love. It is essential that we make sleep sacred in our lives again.
- Digestion is the second pillar in Ayurveda because it is in the stomach that our health or disease originate. The digestive system is the point of origin of our doshas. This space is where disease begins, and where our attention should turn to when we experience out-of-rhythm symptoms in our bodies and minds. Ensure that you are digesting your food fully. Pay attention to the foods you eat, and how you eat them. Eat foods that balance your constitution. When you eat, enjoy the fullness of your eating experience by chewing and tasting your food mindfully, giving thanks to the nourishment you’re receiving, and cleaning your eating space afterwards. Digestion is not only important in the body; it is important in the mind. To eat well is to feel well!
Healthy Management of Desires (Bramacharya)
- The third pillar of Ayurveda is awareness of our choices. We as humans have strong, emotional bodies, and a strong relationship with our minds and mental state. These states can severely fluctuate, especially when we are unaware and disconnected with ourselves and our environment. This often leads us to making choices that are driven by desire, or emotion, rather than pure conscious thought. The proper management of these desires and of our emotional energy is essential to living a healthy, balanced life. Draw awareness to your relationships with food, sex, work, family, home life, etc. and ask yourself if there are places in which restraint can be practiced. This pillar is really about understanding and practicing an awareness of your desires, where they come from, and how you can manage them in a healthy way. Take time to be with yourself, practice a daily routine, explore artistic realms – whatever it is that allows you to mindfully contain your vital energy and express yourself authentically. Awareness of the root of desire is the key to self realization.