3:10 min. read
Stabilize and Heal
As a traditionally preventive medicine system, Ayurveda’s primary goal is to attain the highest balance possible with our own bodies and surroundings to positively avoid illness. So, what our bodies do naturally is to attract that which most resembles them, and it’s up to us to notice and counteract this phenomenon.
This article will guide you on how the most fundamental Ayurvedic principles can help you understand how to balance your Doshas. You will learn about the driving energies that are considered the Pairs of Opposites and how they can drive you to attain a better, healthier lifestyle. You will also discover how you can incorporate these teachings into your daily life, employing a few balancing techniques using the knowledge you will acquire.
What are the Ayurvedic Pairs of Opposites?
At its very core, Ayurveda states that all is energy and that all energy needs to be in balance to achieve wellbeing. This theory applies to absolutely everything, and it’s quite intuitive and self-explanatory.
According to this central theory of Ayurveda, everything around us has inherent qualities that can describe its energy and help us understand the world and have a healthier interaction with it and ourselves. We can find these qualities in each Dosha and in a very intuitive method of 10 pairs of opposites that Ayurveda has classified these attributes, or Gunas, into.
Like increases like and opposites cancel each other, which is the natural way for us to stay warm when it’s cold outside, dry when it’s raining, etc. This allows for the Gunas to serve as a mechanism for the fast identification and stabilization of unbalances that may lead to disease.
Ayurvedic Ancient Wisdom
Following this ancient Ayurvedic advice, you just need to understand which Gunas counteract each other and apply this knowledge whenever you notice an imbalance. This can be done in a very intuitive way.
Intuition is actually a distinct type of intelligence that “refers to the brain’s process of interpreting and reaching conclusions about phenomena without resorting to conscious thought. And further, it’s usually assumed that this process draws on the mind’s vast storehouse of memories.” (Bonabeau, 2003)
So, when you grasp how adding an oily element to rough skin, for example, is an effective way to offset dryness and find balance, you will be ready to make adjustments in your life almost automatically.
Now, for an in-depth and professional assessment as to which of your Gunas are off-balance, you should always consult with a certified Ayurvedic doctor. Remember that it’s essential to know your Vikruti (or current Dosha imbalance), so you can adjust small matters in your life in an intuitive manner by following the Gunas.
The Gunas and their Specifics
Understanding the Gunas is the very basis of getting a grip of the foundation of Ayurveda, so you will be able to discern how they govern everything that happens in your body.
Heavy (Guru): Growth, sleep, nourishment, groundedness, stability, centered, dullness, slow digestion, stubbornness.
Light (Laghu): Alert, attentive, spaciness, ungrounded, insecurity, fear, anxiety, reduces bulk.
Cold (Sīta): Numbness, unconsciousness, contraction, stagnation, fear, insensitivity, mucus, slows digestion, reduces immunity, sore throat, congestion.
Hot (Uṣṇa): Gastric fire (or Agni), improves circulation, digestion, absorption, assimilation, cleansing, irritability, anger, ulcers, quickness to criticize, inflammation.
Oily (Snigdha): Relaxation, smoothness, moisture, lubrication, vigor, compassion, love, nourishing, manipulation.
Dry (Rūkṣa): Dehydration, constipation, stimulates fire, choking, constriction, spasm, pain, rough skin, fear, nervousness, loneliness, isolation, separation, rejection, independence.
Dull (Manda): Sluggish, relaxation, calm, quiet, silence, rich & fatty foods, thoughtful.
Sharp (Tīkṣṇa): Spicy foods, fire, improves learning, concentration, understanding, appreciation, comprehension, ulcers, overthink, penetrates, loudness, keen intellect.
Smooth (Slakṣṇa): Cheese, oils, avocado, Ghee, lubricates, flexible, prevents osteoporosis & arthritis, caring.
Rough (Khara): Dryness, absorption, constipation, raw vegetables, many beans, rigidity, cracking, carelessness.
Dense (Sāndra): Meat, cheese, compactness, grounded, stability, solid, density, strength, firmness of healthy muscle, highly concentrated.
Liquid (Drava): Diluted, water, salivation, compassion, cohesiveness, water retention, flexibility.
Soft (Mṛdu): Delicacy, relaxation, tenderness, love, care, mucous.
Hard (Kaṭhina): Tumor, strength, rigidity, selfishness, callousness, insensitivity, callouses.
Static (Sthira): Stability, support, sitting quietly, healing, obstruction.
Mobile (Cala): Motion, shakiness, restlessness, thoughts, feelings, emotions, insecurity, jogging, jumping, physical activity, instability.
Subtle (Sūkṣma): Herbs, spacey, alcohol, aspirin, emotional, penetrates subtle tissues.
Gross (Sthūla): obstruction, obesity, meat, cheese, excessiveness.
Clear (Viśada): Isolation, diversion, purification, too much cleansing, pacification.
Cloudy (Picchila): Cohesiveness, attachment, lack of perception, dairy, confusion.