Ayurvedic Specialist & 500 Hour E-RYT
Our society is addicted to being busy. It’s common that multi-tasking and doing more is a sign of productivity and strength, while moving with less urgency and doing less is viewed as less productive and perhaps even unmotivated. When in reality, the exact opposite is true. When asked what surprised him most about humanity, the Dalai Lama answered, “We sacrifice our health in order to make wealth, then we sacrifice our wealth in order to get back our health.” This leads us to the question, “Do we really need to work harder, or smarter? If the latter, how do we shift gears to live a more balanced life? “
From Fight or Flight to Nurture
According to Ayurveda, fatigue is caused by one of many things. Primarily it is associated with a depleted state of agni (digestive fire) or one of the three vital energies; prana, tejas, or ojas. Generally speaking, when a dosha; vata, pitta, kapha, is in excess, disease is manifesting and when the three vital forces are in excess, health is manifesting.
When working with Ayurveda and the vital energies, we are better able to see where our low energy is stemming from, and make the shifts necessary to cultivate, not only more energy, but optimal health and happiness.
When we experience fatigue, our body is telling us that a system in our body is not functioning properly. In Ayurveda, everything starts with our ability to digest or the strength of our agni (digestive fire). To better understand the function of agni, we look at the roll of digestive enzymes in relation to the strength of our metabolism.
The best path to restore agni is through an Ayurvedic cleanse. To maintain healthy agni, one can establish an Ayurvedic diet that is personalized to their constitution or dosha along with a balanced lifestyle.
When agni is too high or too low, we must look at our current state of imbalance in relation to the three doshas and their subtle essences. To correct agni, we must work to rebalance the doshas by increasing the three vital energies; prana, tejas, ojas
Need some guidance getting your digestion back on track?
Balancing Pitta and Creating Tejas
The Pitta dosha is comprised of the elements of fire and water and is responsible for all transformation within the body and mind. In regards to our agni, when Pitta is in excess, there is too much agni or digestive fire. When agni is running too high, our digestive fire is scorching what we put into our body, rather than transforming it into nutrients. To reduce excess Pitta that is causing causing our agni to be imbalanced, one must follow a pitta pacifying diet and lifestyle, and work to increase their Tejas.
Tejas is the subtle form of Pitta and it governs intelligence, judgement, digestion and transformation. Tejas is our passion and drive, it is what allows us to push forward when things are challenging. This is the force that enables us to practice tapas and transform ourselves on our spiritual journey. Tejas governs metabolism and digestion and is related directly to our thyroid and pancreas, this is why most deep seated metabolic functions are Tejas in nature. When we are sick, Tejas is activated to burn or destroy the toxins by generating a fever; It is our ability to overcome mild pathogens without disturbances in our lives.
When Tejas is depleted, we tend to feel weak, unmotivated, and lack passion. Tejas is developed through Tapas; control of speech, actions and thoughts. Practicing concentration and presence to overcome our weakness, practicing self-inquiry, diligence towards growth on our spiritual path and withholding from wrong speech or actions will increase Tejas and thus balance the pitta dosha and our agni.
Stay tuned for part 3: Balancing Kapha and Creating Ojas!
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