The Shaka Vansiya Ayurveda (SVA) of Vaidya R K Mishra
By James L. Pace, SV Ayurveda Practitioner and Marma Therapist
Meeting Vaidya Mishra
In the spring of 2003 a Jyotishi with whom I had consulted called to let me know that, 'The greatest Vaidya I have ever met -- and I've met many -- is in NYC for a few days. His name is Vaidya R K Mishra, former Director of Research for Maharishi Ayurveda Products International. I know you're into Ayurveda; you should call him, here's his number'. I called and briefly explained my Ayurvedic education and practice. He said 'My practice of Ayurveda is different; but please do meet with me for lunch'.
Vaidya Mishra had a certain 'presence'. When he speaks, you know that he knows what he's talking about. Then and there I knew that I must study with him. My 'internship' began by organizing workshops and consultations at my home. Those workshops later expanded to the New York Open Center and Arsha Vidya Gurukulam, in Saylorsburg, PA. Over the course of a decade I saw several hundred clients with him and never ceased to be amazed at his wisdom and healing skills. That is how the 'teacher appeared', setting me on my journey of learning the ancient wisdom of Shaka Vansiya Ayurveda.
Vaidya Mishra's Shaka Vansiya Ayurveda Tradition
Vaidya Mishra holds a GAMS (Graduate of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery). However, he also hails from a pristine tradition of pure (shudh) Ayurveda closely held by a small number of family lineages dating back several thousand years, handed down orally generation after generation. This ancestral lineage stems from healers known as the Shakadwipi Brahmans.
The Shakadwipi Brahmans had extensive knowledge of herbs, flowers, marma (energy points), mantras (Vedic vibrations), aromas, and secret methods of prana preservation. In fact, their fame was so wide-spread that Lord Krishna's son, Sambh, traveled to Shaka Island (currently Madagascar) in search of these healers, renowned for their ability to cure leprosy. (According to the Bhavishya Puran, Sambh contracted leprosy due to a karmic debt.) Ten Shakadwipi Brahmin couples were invited to move to India to treat Sambh. In addition to herbal protocols, they built sun temples, performed sun worshiping rituals, and cured Sambh. These families then settled in Jharkhand, Bihar, Eastern Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and various other states of India.
Vaidya R K. Mishra's ancestors were descendants of these Shakadwipi families. His immediate paternal ancestors lived in a village called Vaidya Chak (village of healers), in the district of Bhagalpur in the state of Bihar, India. Based on his Janma Kundali (birth chart) Vaidya Mishra was chosen among his siblings to carry on the familial tradition. After graduating academic study of Ayurveda at Bihar University, he then undertook a seven-year internship with his father (Vaidya Kameshwar Mishra) to learn the healing secrets of the Shaka Vansiya Ayurveda lineage.
Contemporary vs Traditional (Shudh) Ayurveda
The contemporary study of Ayurveda begins with the concepts of vata, pitta, and kapha. When someone asks what Ayurveda is, the most likely answer defines Ayurveda as the science that uses the three humors (doshas) called vata, pitta, and kapha to determine body types and imbalances.
However, Vaidya often said that body types and doshas are just the ABC's of Ayurveda. In contrast, classical or shudh (pure) Ayurveda (SVA) starts with the origin of the body in relationship to its interactions with the environment and the soul. These concepts and their practical application must be properly understood, because the body is a manifestation (drishya bhuta) of the unmanifest creation (adrishya bhuta). We know, for example, that chilies and zucchinis can grow in the same soil under the same conditions. So why are chilies hot and zucchinis nurturing and cooling? The chilie pepper automatically receives more agni from the environment, whereas the zucchini is set up to receive more soma (lunar cooling energy) from nature. Similarly, a pitta-predominant person automatically receives more agni from the environment. A vata-predominant individual naturally receives more marut (etheric, circulating pranic energy). The kapha type receives more soma. So, while we must understand and address the doshas, we must also understand the source of the doshas and use this deeper knowledge for healing and prevention of disease.
Deha prana samyoge ayuh - Life is the flow of prana in the body
Most scholars of Ayurveda define 'ayu' to mean 'life'. The SVA tradition uses a more exact and serviceable definition of 'ayu'. Deha prana samyoge ayuh - Life is the flow of prana in the body.
Prana - The Ultimate Healing Factor of Mind and Body
The ancient Vedic medical texts state that the human soul (a vibration partaking of the nature of God) is the kernel around which the human physiology is organized. The seat of the soul is in the human heart. The body interacts with the soul, in the heart, through prana. Prana also flows into the physiology from nature, the environment. The body incorporates prana into itself through an intricate network of vibrational channels, called nadis. Consequently a primary goal of SV Ayurveda is to ensure the maximum reception, flow, delivery of prana, coordination of prana, and release of used prana.
Central Precepts of SV Ayurveda - Beyond Theory to Practical Application
Vaidya Mishra's father once told him 'Whatever is in the world outside you will also find in the Carak Samhita. He also told him that whatever theory you teach must also have practical application. Consequently, Vaidya innovates for the needs of modern times; but he never strays from the original teachings of the Carak Samhita - the sourcebook of his lineage. Vaidya has created hundreds of cutting-edge products, in forms not typically used in contemporary Ayurveda. All of them have been formulated in the spirit of the original classical texts, not contradicting or subtracting from their essence.
These products include transdermal herbalized creams for topical use and herbal nectar drops absorbed through the oral mucosa. These advance delivery systems are particularly effective, because they by-pass the often compromised digestive system and livers common in modern man. Crude herbs (powders and tablets) can often prove ineffective when the liver is over-burdened with toxins and when the digestive system fails to properly assimilate them. Furthermore, these advanced delivery systems minimize the possibility of unintended drug/herb interactions. Please learn more at Vaidyamishra.com.
The fundamental precepts of SV Ayurveda behind Vaidya Mishra's protocols and formulations
(c) copyright 2017 Michael Laughrin.
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