Sunday, March 20, 2011

Vishnu Avatar Dhanvantari – God of Ayurveda

Vedic Definition of Health: One whose doshas are balanced, whose digestion is good, whose tissues and wastes are functioning normally, whose appetite is good, and whose body, mind and senses remain filled with bliss, is called a healthy person. Dhanvantari Vishnu Avatar – God of Ayurveda

Dhanvantari is an avatar of Vishnu from the Hindu tradition. He appears in the Vedas and Puranas as the physician of the gods (devas), and the god of Ayurvedic medicine. It is common practice in Hinduism for worshipers to pray to Dhanvantari seeking his blessings for sound health for themselves and/or others. Dhanvantari was an early Indian medical practitioner and one of the world’s first surgeons. Based on Vedic traditions, he is regarded as the source of Ayurveda. He perfected many herbal based cures and natural remedies and was credited with the discovery of the antiseptic properties of turmeric and the preservative properties of salt which he incorporated in his cures. Being a very skilled surgeon according to the standards of his time, he is widely believed to be the pioneer of modern medical practices like plastic surgery. All his surgeries were performed without anesthetic, however in spite of his “crude methods” he was reported to have had a very high success rate. As a result of the brilliance and achievements he displayed in the field of medicine he was chosen as one of the Nine Gems in early Indian ruler Vikramaditya’s court.

Dhanvantari is depicted often as Vishnu, holding medical herbs in one hand and a pot containing rejuvenating nectar called amrita in another (above with the healing urn of amrita). The Puranas state that Dhanavantari emerged from the 'Ocean of Milk' and appeared with the pot of nectar during the story of the Samudra or Sagar manthan whilst the ocean was being churned by the devas and asuras, using the Mandara mountain and the serpent Vasuki The pot of Amrita was snatched by the Asuras or Demons, and after this event another avatar, Mohini, appears and takes the nectar back from the Asuras.

Gayatri, Astotram, Mantra and Stotram
With English Subtitles

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