To live and live fully and happily is the most natural instinct of any living thing.

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According to Ayurveda, it is natural for humans to crave happiness and bodily comfort. In the same manner, it is quite natural for humans to shun pain of any kind.

Rishi Charaka declares, “Although activities of all creatures are directed intuitively towards happiness, the good and bad course they adopt depends upon the knowledge and ignorance (of each creature) respectively.”

To live and live fully and happily is the most natural instinct of any living thing. This is what we dream about, this is what we pray for.Scratch the surface of any heart, and we find hidden deep within the desire to have health, possess vitality, and have longevity. This is why even the mere thought of a chronic or fatal illness strikes such terror in our heart.

An extra growth, or some strange symptom can give us sleepless nights. When we see a physically or mentally unfortunate person, we feel numb and nervous at the same time, and we quickly shift our eyes away, trying to suppress our own inner fears.This urge to prolong life, avoid bodily harm or injury, and live life ‘fully’ has been acknowledged by all Indian scriptures and statements of authority.

This ‘lust for life’ or jijivisha is intrinsic to the journey towards moksha (spiritual freedom), or else the game plan would fail. All creatures, big or small, wish to live and live happily.

Thus, according to Ayurveda, those who blindly seek to satisfy the senses, and run to please every craving, run here and there to satisfy every impulse, and do what it takes to feed each and every mental frenzy, will suffer sooner or later.

One may be born with good health and even good genes, but slow and steady abuse of the body through consistent intake of detrimental foods, and indulgence in self-destructive mental and social thoughts and activities results in slow and steady depletion of the good health. It is only a matter of time.

No amount of health supplements, visits to the spa, or vacations will restore what is depleted and destroyed on a daily basis. It is the moment to moment decisions, which we make under the spell of our own attachments and aversions, that take a heavier toll.

This is why Ayurveda teaches an entire lifestyle that promotes health. The Ayurvedic path is not a 1-3 month intensive. There are no off days in Ayurveda, no calories to count, and no points to add up. Ayurvedic wisdom is unfoldment of wisdom as a continuous way of life.

Ayurveda is an everyday application of intelligence, a spiritual and inner decision to reconnect with the flow of life, a resolution to make decisions after due consideration, a move to reclaim our right to think for ourselves, and a celebration of the fact that our higher Self will always guide us wisely in any given moment – if we so decide. Ayurveda will guide us to our cherished goal – a healthy, happy, full life!

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