The development of aging processes vary from person to person, depending on different factors, ranging from the type of food, genetic tissue preparation, individual personality, existential goals, lifestyle, geographical coverage, inheritance, biotype, karma, etc..
Rasayana is the Sanskrit word for Ayurveda rejuvenation, longevity and quality of life. Rasa means juice, lymph fluid, mercury, sperm, taste, emotion, and is also the first of the tissues (plasma); ayana means among other things, control, regulation, progress, style, both are Rasayana, one of the 8 specialties of Ayurveda. We recall the ancient Ayurvedic Indian medicine as one whose words mean knowledge of life (Ayus: life, Veda: knowledge).
Ayurveda describes life in terms of function rather than structure, is more subjective than Western medicine whose fundamental requirement is that everything is to be objectified, proven.
It is holistic because it not only sees the individual as a whole but as all the same. The macrocosm (universe) and microcosm (humans) are composed of the same elements.
It doesn´t focus so much in giving a name to the disease but understanding the nature of the imbalance, the environment and the patient, or the whole.
It considers the patient and disease separately (Rogi-roga) and then sets the balance and order to the macrocosm.
Rasayana is a highly developed science in Ayurveda and is intimately connected with all aspects of each individual (bio-psycho-neuro-immune-social-climate, etc.), the ultimate goal is to confer longevity, slow aging and prevent disease by improving immunity and resistance.
Rasayana seeks not only longer life but a better quality of life, although no one escapes aging, the details of how that happens occur very differently in all individuals.
Rasayana therapy, as postulated in Ayurveda, takes a multidimensional look that includes a protective approach towards preventive health.
Rasayana aims to:
Retard aging, stabilizing age (Vayahsthapana).
Increase life years (Ayushkaram).
Increase intelligence (Buddhi)
Give strength and endurance (Bala).
Empower people to prevent disease (Rogapahamam samartham).
Immunity: Naimitika or Vyadhiksamatva (Vyadhi disease ksamatva is resistance, immunity, bullet).
Improving the conduct and behavior (Achara Rasayana): universal love, peace, acceptance, judgment, attachment, health, non-violence ... (Prema, Shanti, santosha, viveka, vairagya, Svastha, ahimsa ...).
Increase sexual potency (Vrishya; Vajikarana).
Transformation and rejuvenation of the body (kaya kalpa).
Improve the physical body, muscles, bones, digestion, the body channels, elimination (or doshas, dhatus, agni, srotas, bad).
We are the only animals that can change our biology by what we think or feel (There are no psychosomatic diseases, we are psychosomatic beings)
Rasayana is the essence of alchemy. It is recommended, along with food and herbal medicine, meditation, lifestyle, mental management, the use of breathing techniques and sound techniques, to connect with internal happiness (state of inner silence in which through vibration are spirit and matter religated). Alchemy is, according to Coelho, "bring to material plane spiritual perfection."
In the history of science, alchemy is an ancient practice not verified by the scientific method, a philosophical discipline combining elements of chemistry, metallurgy, physics, medicine, astrology, semiotics, mysticism, spiritualism, art, dance and rituals.
Rasayana pays attention and care to the building blocks of life called upasthambas, which are eating, sleeping and expertise in the management of the senses (ahara, nidra and brahmacharya). The upasthambas (or trayopasthambas) are among many things needed to replenish the daily spending of energy and eliminate waste products, thus not generating any toxins, impurities or free radicals.
Speaking of Rasayana then is to talk about longevity, the increase of brain power, improvement of health, keeping the person active and youthful.
It is a science of the cosmos and the soul related to the process of spiritual realization. It is based on the view that there is something of everything in everything and that through the presence of the sacred we can bring about a transformation in things.
Rasayana uses three basic tools for rejuvenation, in successive steps: purification (cleaning channels and tissues), increase digestive fire, and improvement of nutritional diet. Part of the conduct of Rasayana also includes control of emotional disturbances.
It can be classified according to where it is performed (in special places or at home), and by purpose or objective (imbalance of mind, body, health promoter, etc..) As purifying therapy or palliative use.
Rejuvenation (Rasayana) is not magic, it's diet, behavior, herbs, mind, etc.., But it's true and there is growing evidence that the appropriate use of supplements (not supplements because they don´t substitute but complement) as vitamins, especially the C, B and E, some antioxidants, shark cartilage, spirulina, phenolic compounds (which are substances derived from certain plants such as grapes, strawberries and blackberries, then we shall see), etc.. can aid as well.
Rasayana can be intramural or extramural
The intramural (Kutipravesika Rasayana): building a cottage especially for treatments (called kuti) and live in it (pravesika). Withdrawals or places of purification and treatment are usually constructed according to the rules of Vastu (meaning things real) energy, the Hindu architecture similar to Chinese Feng Shui (meaning wind water), controlled air currents, water, sun, Earth and space science, particularly in relation to the macrocosm.
This therapy has the best results as the patient stays in this peaceful enviroment approximately one month.
It was traditionally the place where the kings lived together with the wise and the doctor was constantly attending. There was a ratio of the space and weight, the openings were small and had all the food, accessories and medicines necessary for treatment. The walls were thick and had three concentric chambers built inside one another. The atmosphere was comfortable in all seasons and was preserved from the noise and temptations.
The procedure began on an auspicious day and lasted, with the brightness of light, 14 days, during the north course of the sun.
Rasayana Vatatapika is called extramural (Vata: wind and Tap: heat, sun) is at home. It´s adjusted to the patient´s life schedule and can even be administered to asymptomatic patients in order to develop general immunity to disease.
The methods used are massage, fasting (diet), sweat therapy (baths, temascales, exercises) and dravyas (drugs, spices, substances, preparations).
Then Rasayana may be intramural or extramural and also as prevention (Kamya Rasayana), maintenance (Ajasrika Rasayana) or treatment and immunity (Naimitika Rasayana).
Only when the evacuation is completed (ama) in the chikitsa, Rasayana is prescribed according to age and physical characteristics.
The purification process is best done in a secluded spot in the middle of nature, away from stress and bustle.
It controls and monitors daily diet and the previous purification procedure.
Ayurveda is vital to know the true cause (Hetu) of injury or disbalance.
Of course it is more important the diagnosis (nidana) than the treatment (chikitsa).
I always say if the diagnosis is wrong, the treatment will be always wrong.
“After age 40, one should eat half, walk twice and laugh three times as much”
Prof. Dr. Fabian J. Ciarlotti
Escuela Espacio Om
Buenos Aires, Argentina