Where does Ayurveda come from?

All of us are pretty familiar with the term Ayurveda. It is a part of an Indian household and is used almost every day. Not only is it an essential part of our household, but is also an important part of our culture. But have we ever sat back and wondered how and when did Ayurveda origin?

The term Ayurveda is derived from two Sanskrit words, ayur meaning life and veda meaning science of knowledge. Thus, the word Ayurveda as a whole means the science of life. 

Its origin dates back to some 5000 years ago. It is an old art of treating various diseases and conditions that originated in India. It is not only the art of healing but it also teaches us that our health is in balance with the environment, body, spirit and mind. The entire concept of Ayurveda is drawn and based on these 4 factors. 

Ayurveda was first put to practice by Dhanvantari, a physician to the gods in Hindu mythology. It is said that he received the art of Ayurveda from Lord Brahma himself. The first mentions of the Ayurveda are in the Vedas (manuscripts of Hindus), especially in Artharveda. The Vedas are filled with a thousand magical ancient practices of treatment.  It also mentions the ways to expel the demons out of one’s body which were traditionally thought to be the reason behind diseases. The primary conditions mentioned are cough, fever, diarrhea,  seizures, tumours, skin diseases and dropsy. 

Ayurveda is a very wide subject and not only revolves around medication and treatments. It also includes subjects like astrology, government, politics, art and human behaviour.
The recent knowledge of the Ayurveda can be studied through “the great triad” of texts called the Brhattrayi. It consists of three books: Charak Samhita, Sushurta Samhita and Ashtanga Hridaya. They describe the basic principles and theories through which the modern Ayurveda has evolved.
Ayurveda has a deep impact on your body and can give you long term relief. It not only focuses on the symptoms of a disease but focuses on the root of the problems. Thus, an Ayurvedic treatment may show slow progress and maybe long but it shows good results and keeps you healthy for a long time. One of the key reasons why Ayurvedic treatment is considered healthy and safe is because all the medicines and herbs used are organic. They come from the same 5 elements our body is said to be composed of. That is, earth, fire, air, water and space. 

There are several other benefits of Ayurveda.

Benefits of Ayurveda:

  • Aids in weight loss
  • Acts as a stress buster 
  • Balances hormones 
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Removes toxins from the body
  • Reduces risks of diseases
  • Makes skin healthy 
  • Cures insomnia 
  • Reduces bloating 

Some of the important Ayurvedic herbs are Ashwagandha, Brahmi, Turmeric, Cumin and Cardamom. There are hundreds of other herbs that are used in Ayurvedic medicines.
Ayurveda is now begin recognised all around the world. Even WHO has recognised it as a traditional system of medicines. India has also signed an agreement with the WHO for promoting this traditional art. This agreement also includes the practices of  Unani and Yoga. 

Earlier, Ayurveda lost its importance after the country was taken over by the British because they promoted the use of modern medications. This bruised this art form cruelly. 

But now it has slowly begun to be recognised again. Modern medical practitioners have also begun to realise the value of this art form. They are now trying to find a link that will connect Ayurveda to modern science. It is not long that Ayurveda will also see further developments and help in treating people just like ancient times. 

Indian Folk Art

India has always been portrayed as a land of cultural and traditional diversity. Every corner of the country has a distinctive cultural identity which is represented through different art forms. These art forms can be collectively put under the topic of Indian Folk Art. Each region has a different style and pattern of art which is practised by the rural folks. These art forms are colourful, simple and reflect the rich heritage. The country is home to around 2500 tribes and ethnic groups. So every state has a unique and interesting form of folk art.

Previously these were done using natural dyes and mostly used for decorating walls and houses. These forms which still exist today, have undergone many changes through all these years including change of medium, colours and pattern. Here are such art forms which give us a peek into the cultural heritage of different regions of the country.

MADHUBANI

Madhubani, also known as Mithila art, was developed by women of Mithila in Northern Bihar. It is characterised by line drawings, colourful patterns and motives. These were practised for hundreds of years but were discovered in 1934 by a British collonial officer during an inspection after an earthquake on house walls.

PATACHITRA

The word ‘patachitra’ derives from the Sanskrit words patta, meaning canvas and chitra, meaning picture. It is one of the oldest art forms of Odisha. It is done on canvas and portrays simple mythological themes through rich colours and motives. Some of the themes include Thia Badhia – depicting the temple of Jagannath, and Panchamukhi – depicting Lord Ganesh as a five-headed deity.

WARLI

Warli is the name of cultivator tribes belonging to Northern Maharashtra and Gujarat. Though discovered in early seventies, the roots of the art form can be traced back to as early as 10th century A.D. Mostly featuring geometrical shapes, they potray daily life, hunting, fishing and festival scenes. They show a common human figure through a circle and two triangles, which move in circles resembling the circle of life.

RAJASTHANI MINIATURE PAINTING

The art form is introduced by Mughals who brought in persian artists for creating the art. The Mughal emperor Akbar built an atelier for them to promote the artwork. They trained Indian artists who produced it in a new style inspired by the royal lives of Mughals. Eventually the paintings made by these Indian artists came to be known as Rajput or Rajasthani miniature. They are characterized by strong lines and bold colours made from minerals, precious stones, even pure gold and silver.

TANJORE ART

Orijinating in Tanjavore, about 300kms from Chennai, this art form evolved under the rulers of the Chola empire. Characterized by brilliant colour schemes, decorative jewellery with stones and remarkable gold leaf work, these paintings mostly consist themes of gods and goddesses.

KALAMEZUTHU

Simmilar to Rangoli and Kolam, this art form originated in Kerala. It mostly consists of the representation of deities like Kali and Lord Ayyappa on temple floors. Natural pigments and powders of mostly 5 colours are used by the makers and the art is done by bare fingers without the use of any tools. The 5 colour shades are made from natural pigments like – rice powder for white, burnt husk for black, turmeric for yellow, a mixture of lime and turmeric for red and the leaves of certain trees for green. Lighted oil lamps brighten the colours in the figures which usually feature anger or other emotions.

National Handloom Day to be celebrated on August 7th

National Handloom Day is celebrated on the 7th of August annually in India. It is observed to create awareness about the importance of the textile industry in the economy. It began as an initiative to honour and provide work to handloom weavers and artisans. 7th August was declared as National Handloom Day by the Union Government in 2015 to generate awareness about the industry and its social importance. The day is celebrated through different functions and events across the country. Workshops are conducted to spread information about work opportunities among weavers and their families. Handloom fairs, exhibitions, parades, panels take place during various events.Through the celebrations of this day, handloom products get a wide recognition.

Handlooms have gradually emerged as the largest cottage industry. Almost 95% of the world’s handicrafts are from India. Weavers create from different natural fibres like cotton, silk and wool.While we celebrate the diversity of India’s art and crafts, its also important to address the problems and needs of the artisans. They should be provided with the knowledge of techniques, prices, and modern technology.

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Different schemes like Reservation of Articles for Production Act of 1985 and Handloom Census have been introduced so that artisans can benefit from them. Social media campaigns like #iwearhandloom have popularized the craft in recent times to an extent. These crafts should be included in contemporary industries so that younger generations can know about them and start supporting the cottage industries.

Historical Significance

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August 7 was declared as the Handloom day in 2015 to revive the roots of handloom and to commemorate the Swadeshi Movement which began on the same day 115 years back. The first National Handloom Day was inaugurated on 7 August 2015 at the Centenary Hall of Madras University in Chennai. The movement was launched in Calcutta Town Hall on August 7, 1905 as a protest against the Bengal Partition by the British Government. The movement was started to facilitate the use of domestic products and production of goods within the country for boycotting British goods. There were also instances of burning British goods. When Lord Curzon announced the partition of Bengal in July 1905, the Indian National Congress started the movement. It led to the spread of revolutionary anti colonial and anti British movements across the country. Further movements like the Non Cooperation movement and the Satyagraha movement developed from the Swadeshi movement.

In recent times, the day is celebrated to spread awareness and develop consciousness of the public regarding textiles and the handloom industry which is extremely important for the socio economic development of the country. Handlooms and crafts empower artisans and represent the diverse cultural identities present in the country. They are eco-friendly and sustainable crafts which also function as the livelihood of so many people.

Celebrations this year

This year is the 6th National Handloom Day and the day will be celebrated through a virtual programme which will be conducted by the Union Ministry of Textiles. The textile minister Smriti Irani will be the chief guest for the event. The event will be observed with all the handloom clusters across India, 16 NIFT (National Institute of Fashion Technology) campuses, 24 Weaver Service Centres of different states and National Handloom Development Corporation.

Thinking through Act

“Acting is behaving truthfully under imaginary circumstances.”

Acting is basically an art of imitation or reflection or representation. It is the quality of utilizing your own spirit body and mind in being someone else. Actors on the stage do not show themselves up there, but they show the character they get into to people.”  Acting is equivalent to forgetting the original self.

actor-on-stage

Acting is not about being someone different. It’s finding the similarity in what is apparently different, then finding myself in there.

Benefits of acting

There are many benefits of acting :

  1.  It is a self-cleansing art.
  2. It helps us to forget ourselves, our worries, or goals, our life pressure, etc for the same time.
  3. It helps us to “be present”. Through acting, we enjoy “the moment”. We are at “the moment”.
  4. It helps us to understand the small little worlds as well as the big worlds of various people around us.
  5. Every act gives us a different perception that adds to build our character.

Methods of acting

  1. Stanislavski/Strasberg/Method: It uses affective memory considering our past. We need to relate to our past events. It draws situations from real life and there is an “emotional recall” as we get in touch with your emotional self.
  2. Meisner Method: It is the method based on the usage of imagination only. We need to enforce us to ask questions to ourselves. We ask the questions “what if”. We need time to contemplate under what situation will I be like this and considers the hypothetical future.

Voice Acting

Our emotions come out of our voices. Talking to a person over a voice call, we can immediately interpret if he is happy, sad, angry, guilty, lonely, or anything else. The Voice of a person gives a strong sense of the feelings of a person. Therefore, in addition to bringing the character by our body movements, we also need to bring out the character through our voice. Indeed, the voice acting is so powerful that it has opened up a separate domain for artists. Voice acting by podcasts are becoming popular day by day. It is easy to access and very interesting helping listeners to create a world of their own by listening to the voice artists. In addition, in these difficult times of pandemic, where shooting is difficult due to the rules of social distancing, podcasts are the way for artists.

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Irrespective of the form of acting, the main trick is to make your character your best friend. We need to study up on character traits; read testimonials, interviews, or watch videos. Then, we need to try to bring the traits through voice. Traits, in general, depending on age, geographical location, any distinct characteristic, or disability. There is a need to develops a culture of responsive acting. It is also important to tackles self-consciousness. It is an effective way of creating the world around us. An actor is an energy bank, always excited about his character and his story.

“Acting is a sport. On stage you must be ready to move like a tennis player on his toes. Your concentration must be keen, your reflexes sharp; your body and mind are in top gear, the chase is on. Acting is energy. In the theatre people pay to see energy.”

3 Ways for Students to Make Money Online Without Getting a Job

USE Depop

Similar to eBay, Depop is a platform for those who want to sell their clothing, jewelry, artwork, and anything else under the sun. The app is well known for being populated by vintage lovers and those who want to reduce their carbon footprint by practicing sustainability. The app also includes item recommendations based on your taste, top sellers based on style, and world favourites. Users can decide to follow shops and sellers in order to keep track of the items they are selling.

Starting up on this app is very elementary. The user only needs to connect their Paypal account for transactions and other payments. In addition to payments, many sellers and users on the app also participate in trades where they trade items from either store of similar value. After this step, the only thing left is setting up an account with a profile photo, a biography, and social media links, if that’s what your heart desires. From here, you can post photos of whatever you want to sell and choose the price.

If your item is a clothing item, a jewellery piece, or an accessory of any sort, wearing it in a photo for reference is normally preferred by buyers so they can see how it may fit another individual. Always take as many photos of your product as possible. This usually increases the likelihood that someone will buy it because you show all the angles of the product as well as the flaws it may have. Include a bunch of tags related to your item under the post. These tags are used for when other users search an item through keywords.

Youtube

For creators from all walks of life, Youtube is one of Gen Z’s golden media platforms. From compilations to make up tutorials to daily vlogs to art tutorials to photography tips, the platform is extremely versatile. And this is where you come in. Like the previous idea, take something you like and start a channel on it. If you’re really religious, start a channel on things you have learned or practice. If you love makeup, become a practicing beauty guru. Or maybe even just do daily vlogs and stream your routine in quarantine. The possibilities of Youtube are endless, but that doesn’t always promise you money. Many Youtubers correlate their large incomes from Youtube to brand deals, views and hard work But the message on success in the Youtube space is clear: you need to be patient. Success on Youtube doesn’t just come with the click of the upload button, you need to work for it or do something that is worth remembering. 

SELL YOUR ART

This option is much more universal than you think. Whether you are a skilled artist or not, selling paintings or art on eBay is much more simple than one would expect. If you’re an amateur then start by making a small abstract piece. If you’ve mastered an art form then you have an upper hand, show your art skills, create more art pieces since you have more time on your hand.