Celebrating Ayurveda!

Recounting a wonderful Ayurveda Day celebration, with great food, great people, and Dublin's Mayor Dave. Plus: What I learned about Ayurvedic healing, and how meditation fits in.

My thanks to Sarat Addanki, CEO of AyurWay in Pleasanton, CA, for a wonderful day!

The Ayurveda Day luncheon was terrific. We all took the pledge to live a healthy lifestyle, in accordance with nature (including our own internal nature!) I met wonderful people, had great conversations, and ate awesome food. (Vegetarian Indian dishes. No one does "vegetarian" quite like India. The meals are tasty, filling, and they satisfy for hours.)

Dublin, CA Mayor David Haubert was in attendance. And what a strong presence he was! He's a progressive politician who sees the struggles of ordinary Americans, and who wants to alleviate them. He's currently running for Alameda County Supervisor. He deserves our support!

The venue was the Elliston Vineyards in Sunol. It was off the beaten-track and quiet, with an awesome mansion and a large Koi pond that had 3 fountains running into it next to a nice shaded gazebo. So I set up my bench in the gazebo and proceeded to have a spectacular meditation.

At the event, meanwhile, I managed to acquire a lot of information on Ayurvedic healing modalities. Talk about good! Yeah. They are. They earn the Eric Armstrong stamp of nutritional approval. :__)

The reason it's a "nutritional" approval is that the healing techniques are essentially nutritional in nature--but at times in unexpected ways!

In addition to teas and herbal capsules, they offer treatments using herbally-medicated oils that are customized for each patient. The treatments include massage, treatments where they build an organic wall around a joint and bath it in a "lake" of oil, and at least one where they run a continuous stream of medicated oil onto the 3rd eye.

Those treatments, believe it or not, are essentially "nutritional" in nature. (And those are just the ones I learned about!)

What you may not know is that the skin is the largest digestive organ in the body. How, you wonder? Glad you asked! (Read on for the details, or stop here if you've had enough...)

Although the medium-chain fats in coconut oil go directly from the intestinal tract to the liver (like other nutrients), the long-chain fats (both saturated and unsaturated) are first taken up by the lymph system.

That system surrounds every cell in your body. It handles molecules that are too big into the blood stream. It's where the immune system pummels invaders, and it's the path that fats take to get to the liver.

But here's the thing: "Every cell in the body" includes your skin. Oils are absorbed through the skin, into the lymph system. So oils on your skin are absorbed in exactly the same way as oils and fats in your digestive tract!

 All of which makes me wonder: How on earth did Ayurvedic practitioners know all this in India, 5- or 10-thousand years before "modern" science was invented. (Or, perhaps more accurately, re-discovered.)

 In short, it was a great day, made even more wonderful by the opportunity to learn something new.

 The plan at this point is to develop some meditations that people can use to work from the inside-out, to complement the Ayurvedic practices that mostly work from the outside-in. 

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