Pancha Karma- Ayurveda

Uploaded 9 Dec 2010 — 2 favorites
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© Etan Doronne
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Photo Info
UploadedDecember 10, 2010
TakenDecember 18, 2007
ModelCanon PowerShot SD600
Exposure1/60 sec at f/2.8
FlashRed Eye, Auto-Mode
Focal Length5.8 mm
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Photo license: © All rights reserved

Maybe the Chai, maybe the bidies maybe the garam (hot/spicy) food and maybe constantly being on the move. Some or all had got my body tiered and around October 2007 I checked my self into a 3 week Pancha Karma (5 acts) Ayurvedic treatment.

I had it on my mind since I met someone in northern India, a couple of months back which practiced it in a clinic around Dharamsala. There the price was 12,000 rupees, way to steep for my type of travel. Luckily, while in Jodhpur, I met Gaurav who owns an internet cafe in the old city. After becoming somewhat of a resident in his place we got to talk about Ayurveda and he mentioned his brother is a nurse in the local Ayurvedic University hospital.

One day his brother showed up and we rode his motorcycle to the hospital. The chief doctor/professor took me for an interview in which communication was the key question: would we be able to overcome the language barrier and achieve a doctor-patient relationship. With many hand gestures, a will and a few common words in Hindi or English I was accepted.

2 weeks was the period I would have to stay at the hospital accommodations (which 2 floor central yard building doubles as the student dorms)

In the next weeks I took a dosage of herbal decoction mixed into incrementing amounts of melted Ghee (clarified butter). I had only unspiced lentil dal and chapatis, twice a day. Unlimited room temperature water.

On the 5th day, in the nurse room I practiced drinking as much of a 2 liter jugful of milk. Then vomit as much as possible.

The next 5 days were again a morning decoction portion and same menu. Then after 5 days I took some stronger decoction for releasing the digestive system from its other end.

All this time I got three treatments a day: a steam Neem bath - the leafs of the Neem tree steamed and channeled into a sealed chamber in which I sat, only my head popping out. Thats a skin treatment. Then a hot herbal packages massage - a bunch of herbs stacked in a fabric packet warmed in mustard oil and then massaged over my body. The third treatment, Sirudharra, is a mind pacifier and body relaxant. Oil drips onto the mid-forehead (the third eye) while chanting plays on the background.

All these days I was free after about 12 noon and usually either read books I borrowed in the library or hung out with the students.

The last treatment was optional but recommended, I accepted although the oil cost equaled whole previous 2 weeks treatment (4,000 rupees ~ $100), a week of daily warm oil massage by 4 nurses.

I came to know about their upcoming annual field trip and asked my doctor (their teacher) to join. I did't get an answer and took it as the Indian respectful refusal, but around the last days of my treatment the doctor brought up the subject and asked me if I would like to join. Of course I wanted to and the rest is on my 'Sea Virgins'story.

My India

In the story Just a weed.

2 responses

  • Mag TY

    Mag TY gave props (16 Dec 2010):

    Nice story with the pics :) Tried the same 3 Ayurvedic treatments you did - totally loved "Sirudharra" (pure bliss!)

  • Frances DeMartino

    Frances DeMartino (Deleted) gave props (31 Aug 2013):

    I could use a good detoxing. I would want to skip vomiting milk though Great story & photos.

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