Ayurveda and it’s Origin
Ayurveda has originated from the Vedas and is said to be an Upaveda (sub-Veda) of the Rig Veda. Ayurveda may also be traced to the Atharvana Veda.
Vedas are the knowledge of universal consciousness, which comprises of-
• Anadi (No Start)
• Sanaathana (Always Existing)
• Ananta (Endless)
Vedas are the embodiment of the universal truth and the ultimate knowledge, which always exist in the universe. This makes Ayurveda is eternal and endless. The written documents of Ayurveda exist since 6000 -5000 BC. The famous sage Veda Vyasa was the first to put the complete knowledge of Ayurveda into writing.
Descent of Ayurveda
Ayurveda is an eternal science that existed in the universal consciousness. Brahma (The Creator) first recollected the science of Ayurveda. Brahma taught this wonderful science to Dakshaprajaapati, Dakshaprajaapati taught it to Aswini kumara, who in turn taught it to Indra.
Bharatvaja atreya & Dhanvantari
When diseases began to trouble human beings in this world causing hindrance to acquisition of dharma (righteousness), artha (wealth), kama (desires), moksha (salvation), the sages met in the assembly of the Himalayan slopes. After a deep discussion they decided to learn Ayurveda from Lord Indra. Then Rishi Bharatvaja was elected as their representative and he was sent to Lord Indra.
Bharatvaja after learning the Science of Ayurveda thoroughly came down and propagated it to the other sages. Punarvasu Atreya one among them propagated this science of Ayurveda to his disciples Agnivesa, Bhela, Jathukarna, Parasara, Haritha & Ksharapani. Each one of them wrote treatises embodying the teachings of their preceptor. Agnivesa's treatise was adjudged as the best and became popular in this world.
The sages who came in the lineage of Bharatvaja are called Bharavajeeya parampara. The sages who came in the Bharatvajeeya parampara excelled as physicians. The famous sage of Bharatvajeeya parampara is Charaka who was the disciple of Agnivesha. He has made an excellent treatise in Ayurveda called Charaka Samhita. It was written in early 1000 BC.
At another time Divodasa, the King of Kasi, who is said to be the incarnation of Adi deva Dhanvantri (the god of Ayurveda), learnt this science directly from Lord Indra. He taught this to Aupadhenava, Vaitharana, Aurabhra, Pauskalaavata, Karavirya, Gopura Rakshita & Susruta. Each one of them made their own treatises on this science. The sages who came in the lineage of Dhanvantari are called Dhanvatareeya parampara. They excelled in surgical treatments. The famous sage of Dhanvantareeya parampara is Sushruta. He has made an excellent treatise Sushruta samhita. Sushruta is said to be the "father of surgery". In his book he has explained various surgical procedures. Sushruta samhita was written in early 1000 BC.
After their period around 500AD there comes another famous sage Vagbhatta. He wrote a treatise named Astanga Sangraha by collecting the essence from all the previous treatises. It has three pillars of medical science, viz. Hetu (knowledge of cause of diseases - etiology), Linga (symptoms) and Aushada (therapeutics).