As Vedas are existing from times immemorial, age of Ayurveda cannot be ascertained. The classic and most familier example from the sacred Hindu epic ‘The Ramayana’ can be readily quoted.Hanuman at the advice of Sushena brings the hill which bears ‘Sanjeevani’ to make Lakshmana revive in the battle field during Trethayuga.So it can be assumed that Ayurveda is known to Hindus for thousands of years.


Ayurveda is the Vedic Science of ancient Hindu Medicine which is part of Atharva Veda.


Rishis defined Ayuh or Life as combination of the body, scenes(Indriyas), Satva and Atma- and Ayurveda – the Science of life.It teaches us about human body and health right from fertilization of Ovum to the birth of a child, its growth and ultimately till death. Dhanvanthari god of healing was born from the sea at the time of ‘Ksheera Sagara Madhana’ bearing Shankh, Pot of Amrit, Leech & Herb in his four hands. In some statues of Danvanthari, manuscripts are held in place of the leech


Bhavaprakasha says that Brahmadeva taught Ayurveda to  Dakshaprajapathi  Dakshaprajapathi to Aswini Kumars  Aswini Kumars to Lord  Indra  Lord Indra to Atreya Atreya to his disciples Agnivesh, Hareeta, Parashara,   Jathukarna, Ksheerapani etc. Chakrasamhitha Says that Lord Indra taught Ayurveda to Bharadvaja  Bharadvaja to other rishis


Most authentic manuscripts are Charaka Samhitha authored by Charaka in Trethayuga, Sushruta Samhitha authored by Sushrutha in Dwaparayuga,Vagbhatam authored by Vridha Vagbhata during Kaliyuga.Number of Ayurvedic manuscripts enumerated to be 1,20,000


  • Kapha, Vaata, Pitha which are called primary Dhatus, when they are in an equilibrium.
  • They become Tridoshas when the balance is disturbed to cause disease.
  • Treatment is based on the principle of regaining the equilibrium.
  • As the body and Tridoshas are formed of Pancha Bhutas(Five Elements), natural materials which are made up of Pancha Bhutas are used for treatment . They include Herbs, General Rasas, Lohas, Lavanas, Ratnas, Vishas, Animal Parts etc.
  • Vagbhatta said: jagatyeva manoushadham na kinchidvidyate dravyam vashannanardha yogayoh- means everything in nature is panchabhautika and so is medicinal.


  • KAPHA – is formed of Bhutatva and Jalatatva
  • VATA – is formed of Vayutatva and Akashtatva
  • PITTA – is formed of Agnitatva
  • As earlier said diseases are caused by Tridoshas, they diagnosed  and treated accordingly.
  • Diseases are categorised by their causes.


Ayurveda is classified into 8 categories:

  • Shalya Tantra - Surgery
  • Shalakya Tantra - ENT
  • Kaya Chikitsa Tantra -General Diseases
  • Bhuta Vidya Tantra -Mental Disorders
  • Kaumara Bhrutya Tantra -Child Care
  • Agada Tantra - Toxicology
  • Rasayana Tantra - Rejuvenation
  • Vajikarana Tantra  - Aphrodisiac 


Chikitsa categorised into :

  • Asuri Chikitsa - with shastras
  • Manushi Chikitsa - with herbs
  • Daivi Chikitsa - with Shudh Dhatus like Loha etc.


Medicines are categorised based on their action :

  • Deepana      
  • Paachana
  • Lekhana
  • Rasayana
  • Brimhana
  • Stambhana
  • Vajikarana


  • Choornas
  • Kalka
  • Kwadha
  • Vatuka
  • Lehya
  • Asava
  • Arista
  • Taila
  • Arka  etc.


The Rishis made a comprehensive  account of parts in the body like bones, muscles, ligaments, nerves, blood vessels, joints, marma stanas etc. apart from the external parts 


Elders opine that:
Nidane madhava srestah 
sutra stanethu vagbhata 
shareere shusrutha proktah
charakstu chikatsake
Charaka said: Roga madou parikshetha tatho anantara maushadam.

Diagnosis is Nidana :
Nischitya deyate vyadhi aneneti – nidanam
Nidana means to ascertain particular cause of a particular disease and its symptoms.
Diagnosis is done by ashta sthana pariksha: darshana sparshana prashnai parikshethacha roginam rogam nidana pragrupa lakshanopa shayanthibhi


Dravyas – raw materials for medicines are used based on their properties like rasa, guna, veerya,vipaka and prabhava. Dravyas are classified into six categories: