Top 5 Facts About Father of Ayurveda

Top 5 Facts About Father of Ayurveda

Father of Ayurveda

Many scholars perceived Ayurveda as an ancient science of healing. The literary meaning of Ayurveda in Sanskrit is “The Science of Life ”. The knowledge of Ayurveda originated in India nearly 5000 years ago. This was also known as the “Mother of All Healing ”. Most of the teachings in Ayurveda were orally taught by the most accomplished Gurus to their disciples. Only a few thousand years ago, these valuable teachings and the knowledge of Ayurveda started getting printed, yet most of them are still inaccessible.

Ayurveda is based on Indian philosophy while modern medicine relies upon Physics, Chemistry, Botany, and Zoology.

The question arises who is that great person behind the knowledge of Ayurveda? Though they are many prominent names that are associated with the discovery, teachings, and science of Ayurveda, the most familiar name is, Acharya Charak a.k.a Maharishi Charaka, also known as the Father of Ayurveda.

In this article, you will learn more about the founding father of Ayurveda-“Acharya Charak”.

Let’s get started!

Acharya Charaka – Father of Ayurveda

Acharya Charaka was born in 300 BC and is known as the Father of Ayurveda for his incredible contribution to Ayurveda. Charaka Samhita’ is known as the Encyclopedia of Ayurveda, which encompasses the knowledge and understanding of Ayurveda. It is one of the most ancient treatises on Ayurveda.

Ayurveda has three great treatises namely, Charaka Samhita, Sushruta Samhita, and Ashtanga Sangraha. But due to its precise knowledge, Charaka Samhita gained popularity among the three treatises.

Charak Samhita’ mentioned the fundamentals of vata, pitta, and kapha. Everything in this universe is composed of these three elements. In Ayurveda, these three elements are the force of nature that help us understand the universe precisely. They are derived from the five elements of nature: Space, Air, Water, Fire, and Earth.

According to Charaka Samhita, there are the following branches of Ayurveda

  • Shailya Chikitsa- Surgery
  • Shaakalya Chikitsa- Head, eye, and throat medicine
  • Kaaya Chikitsa- Mental Health
  • Kaumarbhrtya Chikitsa- Pediatrics
  • Aganda Tantra- Toxicology
  • Raasayana Tantra-Pharmacology
  • Vaajikarana Tantra- Reproductive Medicine

Acharya Charaka was an expert in human anatomy, embryology, pharmacology, blood circulation and diseases like diabetes, heart disease, etc. His teachings and beliefs were based on maintaining harmony with nature. He believed that one can live a peaceful and healthy life if one lives in harmony with nature.

Acharya Charaka’s work was translated into Latin and Arabic, amongst many other foreign languages.

Father of Ayurveda
Image Credit: vedicine.org

Interesting Facts about Acharya Charaka

1. You will be amazed to know that according to Bhavaprakasha Nighantu – an ayurvedic text, Acharya Charaka is described as a reincarnation of Shesha– king of snakes and a follower of God Vishnu.

2. As they say life is incomplete without a “Guru”, so was the case of Acharya Charaka. He was a disciple of sage Atreya Punarvasu. It is believed that Atreya Punarvasu had worked as the personal physician of King Nagnajita of the Gandhara Kingdom, who finds mention in the Mahabharata. The original work of Charaka Samhita is credited to Atreya, which was codified and edited by Agnivesha and Charaka. 

3. Charaka Club -New York
There is a Charaka Club in New York, USA. It was founded in 1898, by Charles. L. Dana, Joseph Colleirs, Fedrick Petterson and Barnad Sachs.

The founders of the Charaka Club shared a common interest in the historical, literary, and artistic aspects of medicine. The former name of the club was the Medico-Historical Club. Later, in 1900, the name was changed to the Charaka Club.

The members of the club present papers on literature, art, and history, usually related to medical history.

4. Special Emphasis on Diagnosis 

Along with the teaching of medicine, logic, and philosophy of the Indian medicinal system, Charaka placed special emphasis on the diagnosis of disease and treated Ayurveda as a comprehensive system of health care that dealt with both preventive and curative aspects. 

As a father of Ayurveda, he also elaborated the subjects such as fetal generation and development, anatomy of the human body, and function and malfunction of the body. He also discussed the classification of various diseases.

5. Recognised the functioning of the heart

The findings that modern science is starting today, have already been discovered and stated by Acharya Charak way before. He recognised the heart as the controlling center of our body which is connected through 13 channels. He even mentioned that any obstruction in the main channel will lead to deformity in the functioning of the body.

Final words 

Acharya Charak as the Father of Ayurveda has contributed greatly to the healing of humanity. Keeping his efforts in mind the medical world shall work deriving inspiration from the Acharya Chara and his compiled knowledge in Charak Samhita.

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