Shaka Vansiya Ayurveda—A Living Tradition of Healing and Cooking

Unlike contemporary Ayurveda, which is built on the limited ancient texts that survived the Mogul destruction, the knowledge and practice of Shaka Vansiya (SV) Ayurveda was handed down through a familial lineage tracing back to the ancient Vedic texts, the Puranas. Today’s application of SV Ayurveda healing protocols factors in our exposure to the many stressors of modern civilization that did not exist when the ancient texts were written: hectic lifestyles, electromagnetic frequencies, environmental pollution, depleted soil, toxic and processed food, imbalanced personal routines. One of the main differences with contemporary Ayurveda is the effective delivery of remedies to protect the liver and digestive system from being overwhelmed and to avoid herb-drug interaction commonly caused by unprocessed herbs.

Vaidya R. K. Mishra was the successor of the SV Ayurveda lineage, and I was fortunate to study with him for 8 years. He was born in a family lineage of Ayurvedic doctors in India who preserved their medical knowledge even through the Mogul era, when most Ayurvedic Sanskrit texts were destroyed. Vaidya impressed me with his vast expertise in connecting the ancient texts with modern science. His ability to convey the secrets of his lineage beyond the boundaries of his family makes Ayurveda very practical and effective for us Westerners. Vaidya Mishra was the first to teach me not only the ancient theory of food, but also the hands-on skills of cooking it properly into delicious, light, and energizing meals. My years of training as a certified SV Ayurvedic practitioner culminated in developing systematic programs for Ayurvedic culinary education.