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Abhyanga

An Ayurvedic oil massage designed todrive herbal oil deep into the body’s tissues, This helps loosen and facilitate the removal of toxins (ama) from the body, soothes and tones the nervous system, and calms a restless mind.

Agni

Refers to our digestive fire, and is the root of the English word ignite. This “digestion” refers to our ability to process all aspects of life, including food, experiences, memories, emotions, and sensory impressions. Agni is responsible for assimilating the nutrients and essential elements the body needs while burning off waste products.

Ama

The toxins that build build up in the system as a result of poor digestive fire (agni).

Basti

Basti is the enema therapy of panchakarma, and one of the most effective treatments of Vata disorder. BAsti relieves constipation, distention, chronic fever, colds, muscle spasms, and headaches.

Churna

A spice mixture, either sweet or savory, that may be added to foods to kindle or control the digestive fire.

Dhatu

Dhatus are the basic structure that supports and nourishes our seven body tissues. The seven tissues, or dhatus, are lymph/plasma, blood, muscle, fat, bone, nerves, and reproductive tissue. They are nourished by the foods we eat in a cascading sequence, with the remains of one dhatu feeding it’s subsequent neighbors.

Gunas

Literally means “qualities.” Ayurveda identifies 10 pairs of opposite qualities that we use to talk about the nature of food, the doshas, our environment, etc. They are heavy/light, dull/sharp, hot/cold, oily/dry, smooth/rough, dense/liquid, soft/hard, stable/mobile, clear/cloudy, subtle/gross. See also Tri Gunas.

Ojas

The subtle form of Kapha: underlying strength or “sap”, psychological stability, mental endurance, contentment.

Prakriti

Literally “nature.” Your biological constitution; a combination of Vata, Pitta and/or Kapha.

Prana

In Ayurveda, the subtle form of Vata: life force or breath, comprehension and coordination of ideas, ability to move our thoughts and perceptions. Also one of the five sub-doshas of Vata.

Rajas

One of the Tri Gunas: distraction, turbulence; brings about challenging emotions and interferes with our connectedness.

Sattva

One of the Tri Gunas: clarity, purity; brings about our connection to the divine.

Subtle Doshas

Vata, Pitta and Kapha as they manifest in their mental forms- Prana, Tejas, Ojas

Tamas

One of the Tri Gunas: disturbance, inertia; brings about our darker nature.

Tejas

The subtle form of Pitta: fire or radiance, governs intellect, reason, self-discipline and perception, digestion of thoughts, ideas, and emotions.

Tri Gunas

A way of describing a person’s soul development, or spiritual connectedness: Sattva, Rajas and Tamas.

Vikruti

Describes the balance of the three doshas in the body at a given moment, and is therefore more accurately a description of the nature of imbalance.

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