Golden sayings in Ayurveda Books

india medical

Article No.1986

Compiled by London swaminathan

Date 10th July 2015

Time uploaded in London: 20-54

Charaka and Susruta were great Ayurvedic experts. Their books serve as the foundations of Ayurveda, the popular  Indian Medical System. Both of them wrote in Sanskrit and they lived at least 2300 years ago; but they have only written what is passed to them by their predecessors. Because of constant updating of Indian literature we take the latest date. Yet they stand unique in the world of medicine.

Both of them cover a lot of things in the field of medicine. It is amazing to see that even the burns are classified like we classify today as first degree, second degree and third degree burns. They talk about psychic treatments. Studying was stopped on New moon and Full moon days due to the bad effect of moon. They discuss pre-operative and post-operative care like modern day hospitals.

Let us look at some of the golden verses:

21  Pirmoji širdies operacija

1.Sastra  karma =Surgical Operation

Purva karma = Pre operative; Pradhaana = Operation; Pascaat = Post  operative

Trividhyam karma – Puurva karma, Pradhaanakarma, Paschaatkarmaeti tadvayaadhim pratyupadekshyaamah

–Susruta Sutara 5-3

2.Agnidagdham – Fiery Burns

Plustam = scorched; Durdagdham =Blistered; Samyakdagdham = Superficially burnt; Atidagdham = Deeply burnt

Plushtam durdagdham – Samyakdagdham   Atidagdham cheti chaturvidham Agnidagdham  -Susruta Sutra  12-16


3.Bad Effect of Moon- Cessation from Study= Anadhyayana Dina

Astami – eigth day of the fortnight; Amaavaasyaa –New Moon day; Caturdasai- Fourteenth day of the lunar fortnight; Purnima ardhadina – Half day on full moon day

No Veda Class or any study on the above days.

Ashtamii cha hyamaavaasyaa varjaniiyaa chaturdasii

Puurnimaardhadhinam yaavannishidhdham sarvakarmasu

–Vasisthadanurvedasamhita 30-11


4.Symptoms of Mild Poisoning =Alpavisa Chihnaani

Lohita (rajju)- reddish streak; Nila(rajju) – Bluish streak; Piita (rajju) – yellow streak; Sita (rajju) – whitish streak

Raajya salohitaa yatra niilaah piitaah sitaastatahaa

Vnjeyam raditam tattu njeyamalpavisham cha tat

–Susruta (kalp) 4-17

5.Branches of Ayurveda

Hetu; Laksana; Ausadha

Hetulingaushadhanjanam svastahsturaparayanam

Trisutram sasvatam punyam babudhe yam pitamahah

-charaka sutra 1-24

6.Esana= desire

Desire are of three types: Prana=life, Dhana= wealth; Paraloka = heavens

Trisa esanaah paryastavyaa bhavanti

Tadyathaa praanaisanaa dhanaisanaan paralokaisaneti

-charaka sutra 11-3

7.Ausadham – Therapy

Daiva vyapaasrayam = spiritual therapy

Yukti vyapaasrayam= therapy based on reasoning (physical properties)

Satvaavajaya = Psychic therapy

Trividhamausshadhamiti – daivavyapaasrayam

Yuktivyapaasrayam satvaavajayascha

-charaka sutra 11-54

8.Types of pysique/deha

Sthula = obese; Krsa= lean; Madhya= medium

Dehah sthula krso Madhya iti praagupadhishtah

9.Drugs according to Ayurveda

Dosprasamanam = alleviation of diseases

Dhatupraduusanam = vitiation of kapha, pitta and vaayu

Svasthavrttam = maintenance of positive health

Kinchitdhoshaprasamanam Kinchitdhoshapraduusanam

Svastavruttau matham kinchit trividham dravyamuchyate

Charka sutra 1-67

herb 2Medicinal-Plants-of-India---Amla-Emblica-officinalis

10.Source of Drugs

Jangama = From animals; Audbhida = From vegetables; Parthiva = From the earth

Tat punastrividham proktam jangamaudbhidapaarthivam

-Charaka Sutra 1-68

11.Balam = Strength

Sahajam = constitutional; Kaalajam = temporal;Yuktikrtam =acquired

Trividham baklamiti – sahajam kaalajam yuktikrtancha

Charaka sutra 11-36

12.Types of Diseases= Roga

Nija = Endogenos

Aagantu = Exogenous

Maanasa = Psychic

Trayo rogaa iti – nijaagantumaanasaah –Charaka sutra 11-45

13.Roga Ayatanaani = Causes for disease

Atiyoga = excessive utilisation; Ayoga = non utilisation; Mithyaayoga = wrong utilisation (of artha, karma, Kaala)

Arthaanaam karmanah kaalasya cha atiyoga – ayoga – mithyaayogaah

—Charaka sutra 11-37


14.Rogamaarga – Path of Disease

Saakhaa – Peripheral system; marmaasthisandhi – vital orgas, bones and joints; Kostha – Central system

Trayo rogamargaa iti – sakhaamamaarsthisandhayah koshtascha –Charaka sutra 11-48

15.Sariiradosasangraha = Pathogenic factors in the body

Vaayu =air/wind; Pitta = Fire/Bile; Kapha = water/Phlegm

Vaayuh pitam kapaschoktah saariirodosasangraha: —Charaka sutra 1-57


107 Miracle Herbs in the Hindu Vedas


Ayurveda is one of the oldest, probably the oldest, medical systems in the world. We have proof for it in the oldest religious book- the Rig Veda. Though the Vedas speak about different herbs indifferent places, the most famous hymn is the ‘THE HEALING PLANTS’ hymn in Rig Veda (10-97). Western World is using Indian herbs in their popular medicines for jaundice (Eclipta alba= Karisalankanni) and heart problem (Rawolfia serpentine= Sarpagandhi).

The hymns about herbs indicate the beliefs of Vedic society. They believed that the herbs and the amulets made out of them can do wonders. The herbs will cure all the diseases, flush out the poison from the blood and even attract men towards wives. They associated all herbs with soma plant and moon. They attributed magical and divine qualities to herbs. Ancient Hindus were botanists and environmentalists. They studied their surroundings well. They used plants as similes in poems. Hundreds and hundreds of plant names are in Tamil and Sanskrit literature.

The Vedic hymn in Tenth Mandala (10-97) mentions 107 herbs. Unfortunately we don’t know the names of those 107 herbs; but we do come across hundreds of herbs in the Ayurvedic books of Charaka and Susrutha. Here is the oldest medical hymn in the world:

1.The tawny plants were born in the ancient times, three ages before the gods; now I will meditate upon their hundred and seven forms.

2.Mothers, you have a hundred forms and a thousand growths. You have a hundred ways of working, make this man whole for me.

Please note the word “ancient”, “three ages before the Gods”. Vedas are the oldest religious books in the world. They talk about ‘ ancient ‘ times! I have already written a post “how old is Indian civilisation?”. Also note the numbers 100, 1000. We were the ones who taught the world decimal system; without decimal system no worthy calculations can be done. I am skipping a few lines in the hymn.

susrutha statue in Haridwar

Picture of Susruthar Statue in Haridwar.

5.In the sacred fig tree is your home; in the tree of leaves your dwelling place has been made. You will surely win a cow as your share if you win a man (if you cure this man)

Please note Brahmins use Peepal tree (Aswaththa; Ficus religiosa) from the days of Indus/Sarasvathy civilization until today. All Homams, Havans, Yagas and Yagnas done by Brahmins on day to day basis use only Fig tree sticks.

19.You plants whose king is Soma, spread out over the earth as you were sent by Brihaspati: unite your power in this plant.

20. Do not harm the man who digs you up, nor him for whom nor I dig you up; let all our two footed and four footed creatures be without sickness.

Please note the Vedic priests pray not only for human beings but also for animals! How kind they were!

All the Hindu fire ceremonies use at least nine different types of herbs (wooden sticks) in the fire. No proper scientific study has been done so far. Because of our carelessness we even lost the full knowledge of the 107 herbs.

Miracle Herbs in Atharva Veda

Of the four Vedas, Atharvana Veda is the most useful Veda. It contains verses for marriage, birth and death. It contains talismans for good sex life and herbs for healthy life. Now I will give the details about the herbs:

AV Kanda 2

Jangida mani

For the sake of a long life and for the sake of happiness, I wear an amulet (mani) made of jangida. It will increase my strength and will dry up all manner of ill health (The jangida was a plant that was cultivated so that charms and amulets could be made out of it).

AV Kanda 3

Parna mani

This powerful parna mani (amulet) has come so that it may destroy enemies through its powers. This amulet is like the strength of the gods of the gods and the juice of all herbs. May it energise me.

This sukta is about an amulet made out of the leaves of the palasha tree.

“O, parna mani! You are a leaf, but you are the protector of my body. May you increase my valour. I will wear your energy on my person for an entire year.


AV Kanda 4

Prayer for removing poison (from the tip of arrow)

O poison! The celestial bird Garuda drank you up and you could do no harm. You could not make him mad or unconscious; you were like food for him.

O poisonous plant! What has the one who dug you up out of the ground achieved? What has the mountain on which you grew achieved? Their efforts have all come to nought.

The juice of the herb named varana nullifies all poison. This juice is like amrita itself and with its help, I purge you of all poison.

O poisonous plant that has led to the unconsciousness! I will fling you aside like an arrow. The juice of my herb will banish you the way a useless utensil is discarded. I repulse the poison with this herb.

AV Kanda 5

The herb Kushta

“ O, herb who are named Kushta! You grow on the mountains. Descend here from the mountains so that you may cure disease.

Heaven is thrice removed from earth. The divine asvaththa tree grows in heaven. It is there that the gods obtained the immortal kushta plant.

Oh, kushta plant! Make this patient sit up. Make him healthy and remove his ailment.

You were born from the gods. The soma herb is your friend. You are like the breath of life; you cure diseases of the eye. Grant this patient happiness.

You were born in the Himalayas. You bring welfare to mankind. Justly is your praise is chanted. You cure diseases of the eye and the head. You purge the body of bad blood and increase one’s strength. You have the power of healing.

Shilachi or Laksha

The night is your mother. The sky is your father and your grandfather is the sun himself. You are known as Shilachi. You are the sister of the gods.

(Shilachi was a medicinal plant, chiefly used to repair fractures. It is subsequently referred to as Arundhati).

He who drinks your juice lives. You are the one who protects men. You are the one who nourishes and cures.

Like a man embracing a woman, you climb round every tree. You are the one who grants victory and a long life. You are also known as Sparani.

You are to be found in the trees bhadra, plaksha, asvaththa, khadira (acacia) and dhava. You are to be found in the parna (palasha) and the nyagrodha (fig tree). You are the plant that heals all wounds. Come to me.

AV Kanda 6

Hair growing herb Revati

O Revati herb! Great are your healing powers great is your strength.make us well. Grant us an abundance of hair. Make our hair luxuriant. (We are not able to identify revati now).

AV Kanda 7

A wife’s prayer

“ I dig up this herb from the ground. This herb will attract his attention towards me. This is the herb that protects one from all misfortunes and prevents one from falling prey to temptation. It will bring him back to me and it will grant happiness.

“This herb is named asuri. It is this herb that gave Indra the power to rule over gods. I use it to obtain power over my husband so that I may always be loved by him.

“O,herb! You obtain your serenity from the moon and your energy from the sun. The other gods bestow divine qualities on you. It is for that reason that I praise you.


AV Kanda 8

Heaven and earth will elevate you. The god who is the preserver will elevate you. All the herbs, led by their king Soma, will grant you protection. They will make you rise above earth.

There are 650 English and Tamil articles in my blogs on similar subjects. Enjoy reading! Contact

Why Do Hindus Practise Homeopathy?

By S Swaminathan

Health is Wealth

Health is wealth is a popular saying in many Indian languages. The message is same, but they convey it in different ways. The Tamils developed a medical system called Siddha therapy 2000 years ago. Siddha is a person who has attained some extraordinary powers – both mental and physical. Siddha system is similar to Ayurveda – another old medical system of India. Like Ayurveda, Siddha also treats the imbalances of the three body humours called vatha/wind, pitha/bile and kapha/phlem. Siddha men used herbs and minerals to treat the sick patients.

Both Ayuerveda and Siddha believed in the principles of ‘a sound mind in a sound body’ and ‘prevention is better than cure’. The Hindu Upanishads say ‘the soul can’t be reached by a weak person’ (na ayamathma balaheenena labya – Mundakopanishad).

These indigenous systems create an awareness of diseases and emphasize the importance of healthy life. Unlike western medicines they guide you through your everyday life- literally from morning till night. They tell you what to eat and what not during a particular day or a particular time of the day. They tell you with what you should brush your teeth and which direction you should lay your head in the bed. The proverbs, similes, sayings and actual medical writings in Sanskrit and Tamil supply enough evidence for it.

Who gave the world Homeopathy?

We are told that Homeopathy was developed by the German physician Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843).But Indians know the principle long ago and are practising it in their day to day life.

The basic principles of Homeopathy are:

(1) ‘Like cures Likes’;

(2) ‘Symptoms of diseases are body’s self healing processes’ and

(3) ‘If one is administered with very dilute dose of what causes the disease, one will be cured of the disease’

When Hindus go to a holy place, they won’t drink or bathe in the water at once. Even when they go to temple tanks or holy rivers they will take three sips of water and sprinkle it on their head. Then they will use it for washing their feet and hands ,bathing etc. This small dose of three sips of water (Brahmins call it Achamana) will help them to avoid all the diseases from that particular water source. In those days, water was the main source of diseases. The mineral contents, temperature, taste and quality of water were different from place to place. There was no chlorination or protected water supply for the public. Even today one can practise this ‘achamanam’ and avoid getting diseases from water. The diluted water-in small quantity- gives immunity to us from the germs and other impurities. So Hindus know the principle of Homeopathy ‘Like cures Likes’. No need to say that we should remeber other basic rules about hygiene.

The rule for doing ‘achamana’ (sipping of water) is that the amount of water you take should submerge only one black gram seed (Urad Dhal in Hindi and Masha in Sanskrit). So when you do it three times you would have taken water that submerges only three seeds-so little. When Hindus did it they recite Lord Vishnu’s names: 1.Achyutaya Namaha 2.Ananthaya Namaha 3.Govindaya Namaha

Tamil book Tirukkural 1102 and Natrinai 140 also talk about this principle but in the context of a love sick woman’s look. “For the disease caused by this beautiful maid, she herself is the cure”-says Tirukkural. Like cures Likes!

What is the secret of black hair? 

Stress triggers or complicates most of the diseases is a modern discovery. But a Tamil Cankam poet called Pisiranthaiyar who lived 2000 years ago gives the secret of his black hair at a ripe old age in a beautiful Tamil poem.

When Pisiranthaiyar went to see the great Chola king Kopperun cholan (who was starving himself to death following an ancient Tamil rite) all were amazed to see an old poet without any grey hair. When they asked about the secret of his black hair, he sang;

“How can it be you don’t have any grey hair, through you have lived for many years?

You have asked the question and I will give you an answer!

My children have gone far in learning. My wife is rich in her virtue!

My servants do what I wish and my king, who shuns corruption, protects us!

And in my city there are many noble men who through deep knowledge, have acquired calm, have become self controlled, and the choices they make in their lives are built on the quality of restraint.”

-(Purananuru 191 by Pisiranthaiyar)

To put it in a nutshell:

My son is well educated

My wife is very cooperative

My servants are obedient

My king is a good ruler

My town is full of scholars

If one has all these, one need not worry. If you lead a care free life, you won’t get stressed. You will be ever young like Markandeya. Modern science says that stress triggers blood pressure, heart diseases, cancer and diabetes .

You are what you eat is in all our scriptures. Lord Krishna speaks in detail about the three kinds of food (Bhagavad Gita –chapter 17) and what qualities one gets from those. There is a beautiful saying as well:

“One fourth of what you eat keeps you alive and three fourths of what you eat keeps your doctor alive”

(From an Egyptian Inscription)

1,2,3,4 Out! 

Similar to this, there is a very good poem in he Tamil book ‘Neethi Neri Vilakkam’:

If one eats once a day he is a YOGI.

If anyone eats twice a day, that person is a BOGI (enjoyer of life)

If one eats three times a day, that person is a ROGI (sick person)

If one eats four times a day, that person is a Pogi (Tamil word for gone for ever/dead)

We know very well that indigestion is the root cause of all problems. Too much food leads to indigestion or obesity. This leads to other complications.

Tirukkural written by Tiruvalluvar has a full chapter (Chapter 95-Medicine) on the basic principles of Tamil medical science.

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How Did a Pandya King Get a Golden Hand?

By S Swaminathan

It is a well known fact that the Ancient Indians made tremendous advancements in the field of medical sciences. The Ayurveda and Siddha medical systems were widely practised for the benefit of the general public. Charaka and Susrutha wrote great treatises. A lot of surgical instruments, surgeries like rhinoplasty (plastic surgery for nose), hundreds of medicinal plants and thousands of medicines were listed by them. They were not only appreciated in India but reached western world through Arabic translations nearly one thousand years ago. The old medical books in Sanskrit and Tamil run in to several thousand pages.

Though Charaka, Susrutha,Vagbhata and Agastya are known to many even in the western world, one important surgery went unnoticed by many scholars. There is a very interesting story about a Pandya king in ancient Tamil literature. The king lived two thousand years ago is known from the Tamil epic Silappathikaram (Ref.Mathurai Kandam-Katturai Kaathai) dated around second century AD. A Pandya king was fitted with an artificial hand made of gold; he was known only as the Golden Handed Pandya. Nobody knows his real name even today. One more old Tamil book refer to this story (Ref. Pazamozi Naanuru).

The Story:

The story according to the epic runs like this: a Pandya king was going through the streets of Madurai (the second largest city of Tamil Nadu in South India) in disguise during the night. In the olden days kings used to visit their subjects and observe the general public in disguise to feel the pulse of the populace. Though the ancient Arthashastra of Kautilya speaks of kings employing spies for this purpose, the monarchy always wanted to know what the people feel about them or the country directly.(Every Hindu knew what Rama did to Sita just because a washer man raised some doubts about the purest woman Sitadevi). So much importance was given to the opinion of general public – absolute democracy!

When the Pandya king was passing by a house the lights were on at the dead of night and he heard a conversation. A brahimn by name Keeranthai was consoling his crying wife with these words, ”Darling, don’t worry too much about your safety and security. I am only going to be away for a very short period. Our great king is there to protect all the citizens. Nothing will go wrong in this just place”. As soon as the king heard this conversation he felt some big responsibility fell on his shoulders. So he increased his ward rounds and kept an eye on that house. Months passed. To his surprise he saw light again in the same house at the dead of night. He heard someone talking. In a hurry he mistook that person for a stranger and knocked at the door to scare away the stranger. Alas, it was not a stranger. It was her own husband Keeranthai himself who had just returned from his tour. When Keeranthai shouted back, the king realised his mistake.

One stupid mistake will make you to do more stupid things to hide the first one. It is human nature. So the king knocked at all the houses in the brahmin street and ran away to his palace. Next day a battalion of brahmins went to the palace and complained about what happened the previous night. The king, after patiently listening to their complaints, said to them that the ‘thief’ was already caught. All his ministers were surprised to hear his statement. The king did not stop there. He asked the opinion of the complainants what should be the punishment for that ‘thief’. Everyone shouted in chorus to follow the Hammurabi law: a hand for hand, an eye for an eye. The hand that knocked on the doors must be cut off. Before a second lapsed the king drew his sword and cut off the hand with which he had knocked on the doors the previous night. When he narrated the incident, the whole world praised his justice. The royal physicians rushed for his help and attached a gold hand to his arm. He came to be known as a Gold Hand Pandya in Tamil “Por Kai Pandyan”.

This is a story to elucidate the justice that was followed in ancient Tamil Nadu. No medical information was given about fixing the artificial limb but it didn’t surprised any Indian (please read my article Why do British Judges follow a TamilKing?) because they practised either the Ayurveda or the Siddha medical system.

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