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How Atharva Veda Mattered to Charaka

Atharva Veda also called Brahma Veda was very dear to him and tried to propagate it for the sole benefit of ayurveda. Atharva Veda contains six thousand hymns and one thousand quotes.


How Atharva Veda Mattered to Charaka

Atharva Veda also called Brahma Veda was very dear to him and tried to propagate it for the sole benefit of ayurveda. Atharva Veda contains six thousand hymns and one thousand quotes. Majority of these deal with human body, disorders and cure. Control of restlessness and restoration of original state are what Atharva Veda implies in short. Most of the Atharva hymns are related to philosophical and spiritual ideas or solutions such as yoga vidya, atma vidya and brahma vidya. The Atharva hymns are curative in nature. Curative is immortality and immortality is Brahman. curative hymns help induce faith of cure in patients.

The ancient people mainly gathered their masterly knowledge on treatment by observing animals and birds. The animals and birds when sick eat plants which they do not when in normal health. The medical minded people who observed the animals and birds tried the same remedies on human being and found encouraging results. The ancient people also relied on fire rituals, amulets etc to accrue results. Atharva Veda has referred to these methods gloriously. Philosophical and religious thought also prevailed on the ancient people in relation to the treatment.

It was during Charaka’s time tridosha doctrine was thrived as anticipated in Atharva Veda. Atharva Veda stipulates that most of the diseases are the curse of gods and Charaka was more influenced by this view and he attributed the cause of perplexing fevers to Rudra.

The three Suktas of Atharva Veda contain many hymns. The hymns refer to norms and invocation of hymns to distroy them. Charaka echoed this in the pharmacological management of worm infection. Charaka Samhita mentions voluminously the effect of seasons on the occurrence of diseases which had amply detailed in Atharva Veda. Fevers were matters of concern to the sages of Atharva Vedic period and they refer to a fever with hide and seek nature. Symptomatically it was malaria and Charaka has made good elaboration in his Samhita about it. He also dealt with extensively on ailments of head, neck and heart, insanity, seizers, diarrhoea, jaundice phthisis, injuries and bleeding. In the treatment advocated more emphasize was on invocation of hymns directed towards gods or plants administered orally, topically or as amulets. The treatment as defined by Kausika Sutra of Athrava Veda goes hand in glove with many rituals. Tying of rope made of munja grass, drinking water with soil from out-mount, applying soil on bleeding wounds etc are part of Kausik Sutra. These practices are still on in folk and tribal medicines. Insertion of an iron needle to clear away the blocked urinary channel is also part of Atharva Veda. Charaka’s basti procedure is evolved on this ancient practice.

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