Category Archives: Vedic Times

The Indigenous Science of Permaculture

On the ENVIRONMENT, By Rohini Walker

The last few decades have seen a slow yet steady rise in the awareness and practice of permaculture in conservation and environmental communities. This growing understanding is both heartening and deeply necessary. It also gives rise to occasional pauses to take a closer look at what the term permaculture implies and means, and its true origins. In particular, this examination compels us to look at how permaculture, like much other wisdom deriving from pre-industrial, non-hierarchical, collaboration with land and nature, is at risk of being appropriated and colonized. The resulting reductionist approach seeks to create homogenizing formulas to work in harmony with the environment, a hallmark of mainstream western scientific materialism. This is anathema to what was originally — and still is — an indigenous science of working in partnership and reciprocity with the land and cycles of nature.

Bill Mollison in the garden of his Enmore, Australia home on January 16, 1989. | Greg White / Fairfax Media via Getty Images

The term permaculture — a fusion of “permanent” and “agriculture” — was first coined in the 1970s by two Australians, David Holmgren, and Bill Mollison. Both were academics in Tasmania. Holmgren was at the time a graduate student studying environmental design at the Tasmanian College of Advanced Education, and Mollison — also dubbed the “father of permaculture” — was a senior lecturer in environmental psychology at the University of Tasmania. The foundations of permaculture rest on two concepts: an understanding and acceptance of the diversity of whole systems, as opposed to the soil-degrading effects of industrial monoculture; and on the relational, slow-yet-dynamic practice of observing the land, and its many complex ecosystems.

Running Ditches and Slowing Water
Paiute People Adapt Traditions to Modern-Day Gardens

That permaculture arose as a vital response to the dangerous environmental and human degradation of industrialization, and its toxic farming and agricultural practices is undeniable. Its philosophy is based on the common-sense truth that the human race cannot survive in any measure of health if the Earth is being poisoned. We are at a point in our evolution where anything less than an applied understanding of this idea spells disaster to our survival. In all of this, the propagation of permaculture is crucial.

What is at issue here is the importance of recognizing that permaculture’s roots lie firmly and deeply in the ancient, fertile, organic soil of indigenous science. To overlook and ignore that is to leave permaculture at the mercy of the dogmas of mainstream science, and the latter’s view of the manifold, complex systems in nature as nothing more than resources to be exploited. From this vantage point, humans control, degrade and exploit the land to become obedient, consummate consumers; and the indigenous science of cultivating a reciprocal, regenerative relationship with the Earth, in which the human acknowledges her innate connection to Earth, is dismissed as “unscientific” and empirically unsound.

The Potawot Community Garden, housed at United Indian Health Services’s facility in Arcata, California, incorporates elements of permaculture seamlessly into the center’s holistic approach to healing the Earth and body. | Still from “Tending Nature” episode “Healing The Body with United Indian Health Services.”

Without actively anchoring itself to the wisdom of indigenous science, permaculture is rudderless and vulnerable to invasion by the parasite that only feeds off its host, without giving anything back, ultimately destroying both.

Indeed, Mollison attributed much of what he came to create as “permaculture” to what he learned from the Aboriginals in Tasmania, and other Indigenous people around the world.

Permaculture is fundamentally then, an indigenous science. Its framework is a design system that incorporates core principles and practices from indigenous knowledge around the world, assimilating it with sustainable new technology that is making strides towards harmonizing this traditional wisdom with pioneering modern quantum science. As such, it can restore valuable ancient knowledge, while steering our industrialized society towards a more viable future based on regeneration and reciprocity.

In California, the Chumash, Yurok, Karuk, Hupa, and Miwok tribes have, for over 13,000 years, practiced and handed down the tradition of prescribed burning as a way of tending the land. As people Indigenous to California, and as guardians of Native wisdom whose cultural foundations rest on a reciprocal, reverential, subject-subject interaction with nature, the practice of prescribed burning sees fire as a necessary medicine for the land. For millennia, this method of small-scale, skillfully managed, intentional burning of dead or dying underbrush has been a way of regenerating the land, and significantly decreasing the risk of catastrophic, out-of-control, large-scale wildfires.

Given the devastation caused by wildfires in recent years, a result of climate change and rising temperatures, the art of prescribed burning is something that is finally being looked at by state fire officials and environmental agencies as a viable means of minimizing the risk of wildfires. Tribes are now working together to revive this ancient and practical wisdom of fire as preventative, restorative medicine through the Indigenous Peoples Burning Network. Crucially, state governing bodies are now beginning to work with tribes and their tradition of prescribed burning as a time-tested way of reducing the conditions that cause wildfires in our current, climate-sensitive age.

This restoration of Native wisdom is critical at this time because we are all indigenous to somewhere. There is as much to be gleaned from pre-Christian, pre-industrialized, indigenous old European culture and wisdom as there is from our more current understanding of what being native is. These traditional societies also operated within an Earth-focused, reciprocal, relational paradigm and were decimated through the terror of widespread witch trials and burnings. They also became colonized by the belief that man is here to exercise dominion over land and sea. These old, indigenous, pagan ways became marginalized at best, literally demonized at worst. What did survive we displaced to the fringes of society, viewed by mainstream science and “sensible” society as esoteric, crackpot nonsense — Fait accompli.

Permaculture’s ability to re-indigenize Caucasian people, to reconnect them with their indigenous wisdom traditions of working in partnership with the land, has the potential to stem the tide of the, frankly, crackpot notions of the colonial mindset. These notions are summed up succinctly in the unabridged subtitle of Charles Darwin’s landmark “Origin of Species,” which is: “By Means of Natural Selection or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life.” There is nothing that comes close to resembling “natural” about this type of “selection.” That this book is the cornerstone of what has been accepted science for almost 200 years, also coinciding with the Industrial Revolution, has alarming and multiple layers of significance. For this piece, however, our focus is on the importance of recognizing the core truth that permaculture is an indigenous science.

Why is this important? As a philosophy, practice, and movement, permaculture is gaining much support and momentum across the world. Inevitably, the reductionism of mainstream science and its focus on relentless hyper-productivity, are making insidious advances towards permaculture. This rise in awareness is a bid to dominate and reduce to formulas a system rooted firmly in the cultivation of a dynamic, reciprocal relationship between the human and the Earth, both as subjects. As with any relationship, this takes patience. Permaculture can thrive under the pioneering auspices of new quantum science and technology that is discovering that what the ancients knew to be true is also empirically verifiable. The findings of this new science accept the wisdom of indigenous science — and permaculture as a product of it.

As Bill Mollison, the “father of permaculture” so articulately put it:

“Each such cycle is a unique event; diet, choice, selection, season, weather, digestion, decomposition and regeneration differ each time it happens. Thus, it is the number of such cycles, great and small, that decide the potential for diversity. We should feel ourselves privileged to be part of such eternal renewal. Just by living we have achieved immortality — as grass, grasshoppers, gulls, geese and other people. We are of the diversity we experience in every real sense.

“If, as physical scientists assure us, we all contain a few molecules of Einstein, and if the atomic particles of our physical body reach to the outermost bounds of the universe, then we are all de facto components of all things. There is nowhere left for us to go if we are already everywhere, and this is, in truth, all we will ever have or need. If we love ourselves at all, we should respect all things equally, and not claim any superiority over what are, in effect, our other parts. Is the hand superior to the eye? The bishop to the goose? The son to the mother?…

“Stupidity is an attempt to iron out all differences, and not to use them or value them creatively.”

We must safeguard the permaculture movement against colonizing influences that seek to reduce it to a system of sterile formulas if we want it to remain a powerful agent of healing for the Earth — and for us. It has to be seen for what it is: an indigenous science.

Potawot Health Center: A Holistic Approach to Healing

“Every individual in the world, regardless of cultural background or race, has an indigenous soul struggling to survive in an increasingly hostile environment created by that individual’s mind. A modern person’s body has become a battleground between the rationalist mind — which subscribes to the values of the machine age — and the native soul. This battle is the cause of a great deal of spiritual and physical illness.”


The relatively new science of quantum physics is discovering what indigenous science has known for millennia: we live in a world where all matter is sentient, a subject-subject stance. This traditional knowledge is very much at odds with the fictions of the lifeless, mechanical “objective” world over which humans ruthlessly rule that has been the prevailing dogma of mainstream science. Permaculture can remain immune to the parasitic disease if colonialism of its origins are grounded in indigenous science, and with this new science as its companion and benefactor. It can be a powerful movement of authentic and radical change that it has the potential to be.

“Permaculture’s focus on symbiotic relationships is informed by the concept of ayni, a Quechua and Aymara word for sacred reciprocity, an ethic shared by many traditional cultures and sometimes translated as ‘today for you, tomorrow for me.’ If the permaculture movement can successfully integrate and spread indigenous science in a way that truly benefits both traditional and modern cultures, perhaps this exchange — this sacred reciprocity — has the power to help guide the future of the planet.” – cultureofpermaculture.org

Indigenous science is unequivocally a science, and the system of permaculture is a recent offspring. A dismissal of it as such is a telltale sign and symptom of the colonizer and its unnatural selections.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Rohini Walker is a writer, editor and nature enthusiast. She lives in Joshua Tree, CA and is the co-founder of Luna Arcana, a desert-focused arts & literary print publication.

This article was originally published in support of Tending Nature, a KCET program exploring how traditional practices can inspire a new generation to find a balance between humans and nature.

The Vedic Times is working to create Eco-Villages that will utilize these methods. Please read also “Eco-Villages, Vastu & Sadhu Huts” and join the RE-Evolution.

Financing The Soul

Story by Maria M. Anderson

Gilfre paused the plow, granting his aged dappled beast invite to nibble the few early sprigs of green, poking through the departed winter’s fallow soil. It was not fatigue, but curiosity that prompted the farmer’s attention elsewhere, to the adjacent road, whereupon a team of black horned goats pulled a gilded wagon. Alone, managing the reins, appeared to be a crimson-robed king, of sorts, his hands gnarled, jeweled wooden crown worn upside-down.

“Stranger!” called Gilfre. “A foreign sight to behold, insooth!” The farmer’s hearty amusement chuckle short-lived, extinguished by sudden stench of brimstone, arrived in a hot whirl of grey smoke. The stranger now stood beside the startled farmer, and his even more terrified horse, that in a frenzied instant managed to release from its yolk and hasten home, towards the barn.

“A gallant steed,” commented the Stranger.

“In a day long passed, perhaps,” replied the farmer, whilst exchanging fear for marvel, at the speed of his spooked beast, fast fading from view.

“Perception determines value,” said the Stranger.

Every hair on Gilfre’s body prickled in foreboding, yet his curiosity was piqued by what he could not comprehend. “I am a simple farmer.”

The Stranger smiled and removed a rolled document from beneath his red robe. “Riches await. May we strike a deal?”

Finger-prick sangre signature, in exchange, the Stranger’s promissory note. Gilfre sold his soul and his horse to the faux king, for a magnificent sum, twenty pieces of gold, secured by indiscernible verbiage, pre-penned on parchment paper. At the Stranger’s instruction, as noted in the agreement, the farmer was required to immediately buy back his plow horse, and return the afore signed note, promising twenty pieces of gold, plus two additional silver coins, as interest. Silver coins, Gilfre’s sole life savings, that he was required to retrieve (much to his wife’s angry dismay) from a hidden box beneath the cottage hearth, and present in tangible actuality, to the open-handed Stranger.

Transaction complete, with verifiable receipt.

Gilfre could now tout his plow horse, to the entire village, as a fine equine specimen, one that he had purchased for twenty pieces of gold, plus two silver coins.

A stud craze ensued. Every townsperson, from near and far, who wished to capitalize on Gilfre’s invested fortune, brought broodmare, along with gold and silver payment, hoping to breed offspring of equal or greater value.

In the name of conspicuous consumption, Gilfre’s wife forgave her husband for what she’d deemed foolish. Every coin earned by the procreating plow horse, two coins were spent by his jubilant spendthrift masters. Until the old plow horse died of pleasure, leaving Gilfre and his wife with numerous debts, and no means of repayment.

Desperate not to lose his only remaining asset, his land, Gilfre called upon the faux king for advice and assistance.

The Stranger produced a second binding document, one that required the farmer’s wife to sangre sign, before financial remedy could be divulged. She pricked and penned without inquiry or hesitation.

“Very well,” said the Stranger. “I will purchase your land.” He removed a tin coin from his robe pocket and handed it to Gilfre.

“This pittance would not garner a loaf of bread from the baker, let alone the land on which the wheat was grown!” Gilfre attempted to return the coin to the Stranger. “Do you think me a simpleton?”

“Who sought my assistance?” asked the Stranger. “Go forth and inform farmers the value of their land, and my offer to purchase it before prices fall lower. Each secured parcel purchase, I will reward you with a piece of silver as commission.”

The farmer’s wife pulled her husband aside. “A fair compensation, one that will pay our debts and provide means to repurchase our land.”

Gilfre agreed.

Gilfre’s past financial success, as master of a valuable plow horse stud, gave credence to his dire alarm: Sell your land before it is too late. Frightened farmers lined up to trade their properties for coins. The Stranger, in self-pronounced charity, offered consolation to dismal market values. Since most lands had been owned and worked by families for generations, the farmers could continue to plant and harvest on their former plots, in exchange for providing a portion of crop proceeds to the Stranger. All agreed.

Gilfre and his wife once again became rich, on commission silver. Rather than squandering as before, they paid creditors and saved half of the remaining silver coins; the other half were presented to the Stranger. “I come in good faith to repurchase my land,” announced the former farmer. “Offering the amount paid, plus fair profit, to give thanks for your prior assistance and generosity.”

“That land has increased in value, tenfold.” The Stranger laughed and tossed Gilfre back his bag of silver. “A barrel of gold would not suffice for property as precious as that which you once owned.”

Word of increased property values spread like fire throughout the village. The few farmers who had not sold for a pittance were tempted to finally forgo their lands for hefty profits, paid by other foreign investors, procured by the Stranger. Most of whom paid low-wage imported crews to manage, plant, and harvest the lands. Farmers who had sold cheap, rightly feared the Stranger would increase crop proceed amounts.

Amounts soon doubled, then tripled.

To make up for the deficit, farmers inflated the price of their crops sold to merchants, and decreased the wages paid to local hired laborers. The village bakery was the first business to close. Gypsies replaced local workers, who departed town to seek better compensation, elsewhere. Children of age fled family farms for big cities, without intention of returning. Those without means entered servitude. Instead of land and toil, the generation with means, inherited or borrowed, sought ideas and progress. Skills and traditions were deemed useless by scholars who lectured about knowledge in brick and mortar institutions, created and financed by the Stranger, for profit.

The village and surrounding farms fell into abject ruin. Consumption, crime, and poverty plagued the few who remained. Still, the Stranger grew richer, claiming for his own the deserted decay, and mortgaging it to a new crop of eager speculators, who also signed sangre on the dotted line.

Years passed. Nothing remained of the village, not even its name. Gilfre’s former way of life had become an industry, owned not by many, but by a select few. Gilfre blamed himself. On his deathbed, the old farmer pleaded for his wife to summon the Stranger, one final time.

He came.

“Please, tell a dying man who you are,” implored the farmer, fast fading. “You wear a misplaced crown, but are more cunning and powerful than any king.”

“True. I own what remains of you, and many others, for eternity,” the Stranger replied. He bent down and whispered into Gilfre’s ear. “Call me, The Banker.”

Vaishnava Etiquette

for Men by a Woman

Why? Because apparently all ladies are still only their bodies.

Dear Kind Souls and Wonderful Vaishnavas.
Dandavat pranams. Jaya Gauranga!

By a great blessing, I have been exposed to sweet Krsna (God) and ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness) since 2002; so today, at the beginning of 2020, it’s been 18 years.

With all this time, it could be (and maybe should be) expected that I am now mature in the art of philosophy and versed in spiritual etiquette. Therefore, I also expect the same from others that have been within the culture and society of Krishna consciousness for this long, or much longer. I know many who were born into this beautiful culture, and yet, unfortunately, their immaturity is quite prominent; and often hypocritical in regards to Vaishnava etiquette. Many times it is like a one way road, where you’re expected to conduct yourself with perfect etiquette, while the one in front of you is not. This has left me stupefied every time.

No need to say, I’ll likely be criticized for speaking of this unacceptable trend; often, you’re an offender for noticing and speaking up about anomalies in the behavior of ‘spiritual’ people.

Over the years, much criticism has been given in regards to my frankness (trying to keep things real) and upfront ways; way too often in fact. So much so, that I’m quite infamous (especially in the UK Yatra). Many today seem to enjoy saying that I am ‘very offensive’. Others, that know me well, will say that it’s mostly because of my constant refusal to just ‘go along’ with absorbing so many irregularities and unacceptable behaviors; especially from Men.

Why specially from men?

First, I would like to acknowledge and express my appreciation for men of steady and great character, as this does not apply to them; and most ladies, because ladies are more straightforward with me; they simply like me or dislike me – usually strongly – and that is just fine. With ladies, once the relationship is established, we then get closer or just move on. But with men it has been quite a different story.

For a start, Vaishanva men (or so they think) are constantly attempting to contact me on facebook, to be their ‘friend’. Many times getting very upset if their intentions are questioned, or when I mention my husband; which they should already know, being that my status says: MARRIED!

When they try to engage me in conversation – if not for a specific service or question – it more often then not, goes like this:
Devotee Man: Hare Krsna Mataji…
Me: Hare Krsna prabhu, How can we serve you?
Devotee Man: Where are you? or …. Where do you live?
Me: How can my husband serve you?

It usually stops there, but if the conversation continues a little further, there are usually two outcomes:

1) They get insulted and try to shame me, sometimes even insulting me for asking what it is that they want, or
2) They just get upset, insult me and go away.

I have roughly three men per day (friend of a friend, or a complete stranger from within the devotee community) asking to connect on FB, most strangers are declined, of course. Only once in a blue moon will a lady seek my attention, and when they do, I am so very glad.

Secondly, after I meet an aspiring devotee in a male body, in person at a temple, an event or kirtan, or even online, more often then not – and especially if they are a little older – there is quickly, a clear undermining of my capacities. This is followed, way too soon, with the preaching of personal philosophy with a hard and clear attempt to control who I am, what I do and how; as if my prana (life force) is now theirs to control, to use to their advantage, rather than mine to use in the mission of spiritualizing the whole planet.

In the event we do begin serving together in some way (apart from a very few cases up to today), a very clear competition is soon established, usually ending badly. Because, when it comes to articulating reason, common sense and expressing their clear capacity to prove themselves worthy of either being followed and/or adored (as some work so hard to do) they fall short, and are at a loss. The only thing for them after that is to engage in a ‘correcting Aradhana campaign’. (Some women have also tried this, but again, it is rare.)

What most are not considering is a bigger and more complicated problem. Our spiritual intelligence is granted by Krsna Himself, and only because of our sincere love, dedication and honesty. This intuitive knowledge facilitates the complete understanding of anyone’s ‘hidden agenda’, and that has been priceless.

Akrura (great scholar) visits the cowherd ladies to learn about Love of God.

Most of the time, in this material world, when someone sees the great potential of another – especially if there is a ‘seniority complex’ – there is an absolute and pointed desire to conquer; the urge to control and utilize others’ amazing energy, only to achieve one’s own desires, being whatever they are. And when this ‘how to control others’ is thought out and strategized, it’s commonly done while fully disregarding any of the spiritual etiquette instilled in us by Srila Prabhupada. So, depending on the sincerity level, which may be low in many cases, defeating a soul in a ‘female body’ becomes more important than the service.

Srila Prabhupada explained many times this important fact, that must be understood: we’re all gurus (with different levels of knowledge, of course) and bodily designations are to be disregarded.

“We are not this body” is indeed the very first lesson.

This being so, why is it that I have been reminded again and again that I am a ‘female’, especially when it comes to ISKCON’S authorities; big and small alike. It has been the case that when positions of responsibility are sought (by me, or other ladies), bodily designation remarks are there every time. Even if just to avoid the consideration of a ‘woman’ filling such positions.

Most positions of authority, and 95% of the time, have been given openly and irresponsibly to men demonstrating a pronounced lack of: spiritual (or even mundane) etiquette, Krsna consciousness, and even a basic understanding of the true value of all souls. Just see what is actually being done to the Hare Krsna movement today!

Hindu Temples everywhere? Unimportant and irrelevant rituals, such as burning Ravana outside a temple? Is that really the goal?

My deepest concern is that for so long now, this distasteful approach has become quite clear. Where do I send sincere souls to enjoy Krsna’s presence in a temple, where nobody will prey upon them!

And these prominent issues are not only noticed by me – of course – but by so many that love Srila Prabhupada and his lovely temples (as they were), who also face the same predicament. Today, it’s very difficult to have authentic transcendental interactions with others; so many are not even nice people. It’s my feeling that this is due to a lack of proper Vaishnava etiquette and a minimum level of sincerity.

Certainly I have here only touched the tip of this iceberg so it may be that this will become a series of short articles, because this is a serious matter that needs expression.

I feel strongly that the younger generation needs guidance, and as they much prefer short and pointed information, here we are; simple, and without a great need for dropping slokas or long convoluted exposés. It is about loving God (Krsna) and His creation which includes every amazing living entity in this realm and beyond. Simple really! Right?

The Vedic Times is here to stay, and we remain keen to serve true Vaishnavas, spiritual seekers and all darling souls. We do prefer the ones that are willing to stay level headed, kind and reasonable, regarding all matters; of course!

To be continued…

Healing Arts

Our very first HEALING ARTS program is our FEMALE ARTISANS group ~ in Vrindavan, India

To give please click our donate button below. Thank you!

This caring project is to assist ‘low to no income’ and/or unprotected ladies so they become more able to take care of themselves, family and their children.


Ms. Sudha Pandey is our local responsible

As Subhadradryia dd isn’t currently in Vrindavan, Mrs. Sudha Pandey is kindly taking care of everything and teaching the ladies the art of sewing. The ladies are happily learning and producing.

Please contact us here if any inquiries.

In January 2020 we’ve bought their very first machine. Our gratitude to their donors.

We’re at still specifically fundraising to buy materials and more sewing machines for them. The price for one good machine is of approximately US$100.

Please give generously. Thank you.

These Artisans to be ladies are mostly married women who come from a poor financial background. Most of them work as farm labours – they help with work on other people’s agricultural land, earning about USD 2 per day.

Education: 90% of these ladies have not studied beyond grade 4 in school. 5 % have studied up to grade 8.4 % ladies have studied up to grade 5.

Less than 1 % have completed high school.

Three of our artisan students

The main needs of these ladies:
* Financial stability and improvement in their living standards.
* Medical services ( as there is no hospital in their vicinity – the nearest being 20 kms away)
* A School in their village.
* Better Employment opportunities for women.

These are women staying in villages which are about 5-7 kms away from the beautiful and deeply spiritual Vrindavan town.

All products manufactured by our artisan ladies will be sold in Vrindavan and on our online shop (coming soon). The profits are directly and solely used for their proper housing and livelihood.

Or if you’re inclined to donate any materials please contact us!

To give today please click the button below. Thank you!

Please consider ticking the ‘make this a monthly donation’ box as our efforts will be on-going. Also let us know if you wish to receive our newsletter.
Thank you!


This program was started by Subhadradryia personally. She is a qualified Palliative Doctor and the widowed mother of a lovely girl.

Subhadrapryia Devi Dasi

Eco Village, Vastu & Sadhu Huts

For your Peace of Mind

The Vedic Times Foundation’s mission is to empower and enlighten all spiritual seekers to become stronger and holistically independent.

One of its projects include our SADHU & VASTU HUTS.

We look forward to developing these in different locations on the planet because this will assist the healthy growth of our beautiful ‘spiritual community’.

The Eco-Village is near a Yoga Retreat Centre and a Revolutionary Media Studio.


Advantages to self-sustainable eco-village living:

1. Holistic Education, free and paid, including spiritual education.

2. Preventive Health Care education (also helps removing drugs, alcohol, etc).

3. Micro-Farming – Permaculture – Education (free and paid for).

4. Production of other “organic products” e.g. honey, dry fruits and flowers.

5. A community where neighbors understand and care for one another.

THE HUTS

ECO-VILLAGE ‘s POSSIBLE LAYOUT:
With Vegetable and Flower Gardens in the center

We’ll have two sizes to start with

Vedic Times Hut I

Vedic Times Sadhu Hut I ~ Feet
Vedic Times Sadhu Hut I ~ Metros
Pictures by Carlos Caceres

Vedic Times Hut II

Vedic Times Sadhu Hut II ~ Feet
Vedic Times Hut II ~ Metros

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Cinema and the Psyche

A PodCast by Matt Morreale

Matthew was born in Mississippi and raised in England. He spent many years living and traveling in Europe, soaking up the culture, playing music and writing poetry. Then, with the gravitational pull of a black hole, cinema devoured him.

His podcast is a vehicle for sharing his process and realizations about cinema, the filmmaker and the audience; and their effect on each other.

Matt in Los Angeles 2017

‘Cinema and the Psyche’ is a podcast for exploring the nature of the cinematic art form, the artist and audience, and the way they all interrelate. The focus will be on cinema as it appears in our multiplexes and independent cinemas.

I value the individual and the authentic artistic process as the means for achieving true cinema. Therefore, I’m less concerned with established ideas, academic outlooks and the views of current (non-filmmaking) ‘experts’.

We’ll be concerned with those great filmmakers throughout history who defined the medium, but most of all, with my own understandings and realizations; ever searching for what mainstream cinema can be.

I hope you’ll join me on this journey into the depths of cinema. I won’t always have the ‘right’ opinion or view, but it will be a genuine, individualist approach to discovering the depth of cinema, the psyche and their interrelation.

I expect to be posting at least one 20-30 minute episode each week. But, let’s see, as it is with all intuitional based works, anything can happen!

Lastly, the folks over at Patreon.com have created something wonderful. In their own words: “Patreon’s mission? Oh, nothing short of helping every creator in the world achieve sustainable income. We’re making this happen by building the best platform for creators to make money, run their creative businesses, and connect with the fans who matter most.”

So, go check out my Patreon page, and if you’re inspired by the podcast, or even want to become part of our core endeavor – making movies at www.yogamayafilms.com – give something monthly. All the details are over there, at www.patreon.com/cinema_podcast. Thanks for tuning in!

Episode One: Methodology for Understanding the Nature of Cinema

Vedic Times Foundation

Because Bliss is for Everyone

Welcome

The Vedic Times Foundation’s mission is to further empower and enlighten all spiritual seekers to become stronger and holistically independent.

We’re manifesting revolutionary, caring and self-sustainable projects developed from 2015 to 2019 by Ana Lucia Alves (aka Aradhana dd), after she co-founded and successfully ran a beautiful Charity.

The Vedic Times projects are:

The Healing Arts ~ Starting with our Female Artisans, Ganga Boutique and our YME movies (motion pictures to benefit all)
Vastu & Sadhu Huts ~ For your healthy retirement
Self Sustainable Eco-Villages ~ For healthy and independent living
Holistic Clinics ~ For you (the soul), your body and mind
Retreats Centers ~ To give knowledge & preventive medicine

The Master Plan:

In our Eco-Village Projects, funding can also be generated from our Holistic treatments, Educational efforts and our cottage industries ~ our Vastu & Sadhu Huts ~ and from its organic farming, honey sales, khaki cloth spinning, and all artistic crafts.

Barter and exchanged services is also a paradigm of service we wish to exemplify. The residential village will be a vibrant place where events, workshops, vibrational and holistic medicines, support groups, healing arts, and films with Yoga Maya Entertainment will be a mainstay.

We look forward to developing these projects in different locations because this will assist the healthy growth of our wonderful ‘Spiritual Community’.

Our Projects in more detail:

1. We aim to create employment to build, secure and maintain each community.
2. In each location, to have a VEDIC TIMES holistic clinic with first class treatments, free for local ‘spiritual seekers’ and paid for everyone else.
3. Self Sustainable Eco-Villages & retirement for spiritual seekers with our beautiful SADHU & VASTU HUTS. This means income during its production and more employment for our ‘spiritual community’, because these ‘first class, healthy little homes’ will also be produced for selling outside.
4. Out-Reach services (free and paid aid for the local population).
5. Holistic Education, free and paid, including spiritual education.
6. Preventive Health Care education (removing drugs, alcohol, etc).
7. Micro-Farming – Permaculture – Education (free and paid for).
8. Production of other “organic products” e.g. honey, dry fruits and flowers. And production of Art.
9. Hospice Services (employment for carers, nurses, doctors, etc).

Find the Vedic Times also on Facebook, Vimeo, Twitter & Instagram


Making movies with Yoga~Maya Entertainment (YME).

A ‘NEW WAVE’ FOR THE 21ST CENTURY

As physicists try to uncover the base structure of matter, Yoga-Maya is working to uncover the profound psychological nature of cinema.

More about our ‘spiritually enhanced’ mainstream feature films here

Historically, ’emerging’ technologies (eg. sound, color, CGI) have caused many evolutionary paths in cinema to be prematurely abandoned, leaving its true potential largely undiscovered.

This focus on technology – rather than movies – has left audiences uninspired and studios relying on marketing rather than content.

Cinema’s renaissance is about the magic of cinema; conceiving, producing and experiencing it. Yoga-Maya is all about this 21st century ‘New Wave’.

Audiences are waiting!

Find Yoga-Maya Entertainment on Facebook & Vimeo
See also our YM-Marketing services.


Cine Tribe is a creative hub for artists and cinephiles.

Our Website here!

Our Film Studio and Resort is on its way!

A Revolutionary and Holistic Media Studio for the creation and consumption of content that carries humanity forward.

We are creating a world-class, cutting-edge film studio that hires and serves many of the most innovative cinematic talents in the world.

To know more, please visit our website here.
Also find us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

See also its International Film Festival


Also presenting CHANTING YOGA

THE PRACTICE AND BENEFITS OF ‘CHANTING YOGA

Chanting Yoga is a sublime and simple process by which one can attain peace of mind, bliss and everlasting happiness. From the vedic age came the idea of meditating with a mantra – a word or sound repeated to aid concentration. “Man” is mind and “tra” is to liberate. Therefore chanting of mantras frees the mind from entanglements.

Chanting Yoga combines two of the ancient processes of yoga – meditation (dyana) and repetition of mantras by concentrating on sound vibration. Chanting yoga offers a practical solution to the pressures of our time.

To see/book our 2020 Retreats click here.

Chanting Yoga is perfectly suited to this modern time of stressful and busy lifestyles:

  • You can chant anywhere and anytime
  • You can chant alone or in a group
  • You can chant at work, while travelling or at home
  • You don’t have to wear anything special
  • You don’t have to sit in a particular position
  • You don’t have to carry out any gymnastics

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Yoga as Preventive medicine

Stress Management

The term “stress” was coined by Hans Seyle, and defines as non specific response of the body and mind to any demand, and adaptation to challenge. This physiological and psychological response is called general adaptation syndrome.

There have been various models that explain the role of stress in the development of an illness.

Due to the constant hassles of daily living and work in the form of ongoing interpersonal difficulties, persistent threat to security, financial deprivation, and other life events (stress, distress) have acted as triggering effect on the illness. This has precipitated the illness at an early age, a concept known as “brought forward time”

Stress strains the coping mechanism resulting in sequences of internal changes, which are outwardly expressed as illness. The “crisis theory” as proposed by Lindermann and Sating states that stress produces disequilibrium (crisis) resulting in either adaptative changes or maladaptive changes (emotional and physical illness).

The cybernetic model by Kagan and Levi suggests that there is a two-way interaction between psychosocial stress and psychobiological program which determines the physiological and psychological reaction leading to precursor of disease. Yoga has been found to be efficacious in resolving this stress by enhancing the internal power, rather than banking on the chemical agents.

It delays the expression of illness. It must be emphasized here that yoga is not a substitute to pharmacological intervention in acute cases, rather has an augmenting and supplementing therapeutic effect with pharmacotherapy in illness.

Also visit out Chanting Yoga Website here

IN WORKPLACE

  • What prevents you from achieving at a higher level?
  • Lack of confidence in public speaking?
  • Anxiety, panic or a phobia?
  • Feelings of fear, greed, anger, depression, sadness, guilt, frustration, jealousy, hurt, resentment, stress or other?
  • Difficulty influencing others towards agreements?
  • Concept of what you are worth financially?
  • Burnt out?
  • Slumps in performance?
  • Substance abuse?
  • Your value system?
  • How to achieve success at the highest level?
  • How will this program help you?

A study on meditation in the workplace showed that meditation:

  • Increased effectiveness in the work place.
  • Reduced anxiety, work stress, insomnia and tiredness.
  • Reduced cigarette smoking and alcohol intake.
  • Increased job satisfaction.
  • It reorganizes your energy and vital force.
  • Heightens resistance to common diseases (viral infections).
  • Pranayam and meditation is known to boost your immune system.
  • Gain control of your emotions and mind.
  • Regularity and punctuality.
  • Better understanding in family and social life.
  • Increases memory.
  • Enhances Virtues like straight forwardness, generosity, honesty and productivity.
  • Managing negative emotions/feelings means an individual can achieve success at a higher level and an organization can perform closer to peak efficiency. The bottom line is increased job satisfaction and bigger profits.
  • Awakening our original consciousness.
  • Experiencing great peace and supreme knowledge.
  • Strengthen and recondition your entire body.
  • Meditation has been known to be effective in reversing heart disease, dealing with negative emotions, reducing stress, lowering blood pressure, diminishing anxiety, stopping smoking, weight loss, eating disorders, addictions, boosting the immune system, and improving sports performance.
  • Regain youthful flexibility in spine and limbs.
  • Asanas (physical postures) have shown to improve the flexibility of the spine and help in the mobility of the joints.
  • Redistribute weight.

Illness and Yoga

1) Hypertension

In patients with anxiety, there is an increased level of catecholamine, particularly norepinephrine and epinephrine. Patients performing transcendental meditation had stable levels of catecholamine. This in turn regulated the sympatho-adrenenal medulla system, resulting in stable blood pressure (Infante, 2001).

2) Insomnia

Meditation has shown to be beneficial in sleep related problems.

3) Epilepsy

Transcendental meditation: A double-edged sword in epilepsy: Transcendental Meditation is derived from ancient yogic teachings. Both short- and long-term physiological correlates of TM practice have been studied. EEG effects include increased alpha, theta, and gamma frequencies and increased coherence and synchrony. Neuronal hyper synchrony is a cardinal feature of epilepsy, and subjective psychic symptoms, apnoea, and myoclonic jerking are characteristic of both epileptic seizures. Clinical studies of similar techniques suggest that meditation has a potential antiepileptic therapy.
In various studies, it has been suggested that behavioural phenomena have an underlying epileptic basis, and the potential efficacy for seizure reduction may translate into improved quality of life. However, more understanding is warranted by clinical trials before a blanket statement regarding the efficacy in seizure disorder is made (Yardi, 2000).

4) Smoking and Alcohol dependence: Substance Dependence

A study by Bowen et al. (2007), in a population of alcohol dependent explored the role of Vipassana, a mindfulness meditation practice emphasizes acceptance rather than suppression of unwanted thoughts. They concluded that Vipassana was effective in reduction in substance use as compared to controls. This was achieved as Vipassana meditation course volunteers reported greater reduction in attempts to avoid unwanted thoughts.

5) Psoriasis

In a study by Frankel (1998), in patients with psoriasis found that meditation helped as an adjuvant therapy. The rate of recovery of plaques was 3.8 times faster in the meditation group as compared to control, this was achieved in as little as four weeks time.

6) Chronic back pain

Back pain is an significant public health problem globally and is the most commonly reported reason for use of complimentary alternative medicine particularly yoga. Asthnga yoga and Iyengar yoga, have been found to be efficacious in patients with low back pain. Iyenger yoga has derived from Asthanga yoga, which consists of eight limbs including morale injunctions, rules for personal conduct, posture, breath control, sense withdrawal, concentration, meditation and self realization (Williams, 2005). Krusen, known as one of the early fathers of physical medicine, has credited yoga posture exercises as a means to correct spinal slumping, and thereby improve the respiratory capacity. Stretching of muscles, which produce propioceptive stimulation thereby relaxing muscle tension and restoring optimal muscle tone and posture

7) Depression

Depression is among the five most common disorders seen in primary care. Disability caused by depressive disorder rivals that of coronary artery disease and is greater than disability caused by chronic lung disease and osteoarthritis according to medical outcome study. Cost of depressive disorders in terms of treatment, missed work and loss of function is 43 billion US dollars annually. There have been various studies that have shown to be efficacious as an adjuvant therapy in patients with depressive disorder. (Pilkington et. al., 2005)

8) Psychosomatic disorders

The above-described paths of yoga help the individual in integrating the personality and steadying the mind by changing the attitude and motivation, by developing health and correct habits and by modifying priorities and values of life.
Breathing exercises help in bio-energy control, which then stabilizes emotional upheaval of illness. Yoga Asanas manipulate nervous system and divert body energy to establish the equilibrium of physical, mental and spiritual aspect of the individual’s life. Yoga hygiene not only removes the habit of unhealthy nutrition, but also establishes homeostatic balance. Somatic symptoms evolve due to fault in psychic energy distribution as explained in psychology. Yoga helps in re-channeling the psychic energy (Singh, 2006).

9) Perimenopause/ Menopause

Restorative yoga for treatment of hot flushes has been found to be effective as there was a significant decrease in mean number of hot flushes by 34% from baseline after 8 weeks of intervention. It has no adverse effects and has been suggested to be efficacious in middle-aged women (Cohen, 2007; Khalsa, 2004)

10) Carpal-tunnel syndrome

Yoga in treatment of carpal-tunnel syndrome (Winston, 1999) : Carpel tunnel syndrome is compressive neuropathy of the medial nerve in the carpel tunnel, its more common in women than men, as women have smaller carpel bone, hence less space to accommodate the nerve of similar diameter. With the extensive use of computer keyboard, the wrong posture has led to an increase in the number of new cases in the recent past. In a randomized control trial, it has been shown that eight weeks of Yoga has been found to be beneficial. There was significant reduction in the pain, and better grip strength (Sequeira, 1999).

11) Cancers

Similar to breast cancer, studies of people with prostate cancer suggest that melatonin levels are lower compared to men without cancer, and test tube studies have found that melatonin inhibits the growth of prostate cancer cells. Meditation is a valuable addition to the treatment of prostate cancer. The positive effects of meditation may be due to a rise in levels of melatonin in the body.

12) Obesity

With the practice of asanas and meditation one can achieve weight loss to a greater degree in a short span of time. Weight can be reduced faster then most diets.

Caring for our body

Man has unconsciously tried to be forever young. Man has adopted various methods to achieve this goal, which has been futile and vain to a larger extent. They forget that use of revitalizing lotions or toners to erase the wrinkles is not sufficient. Pharmacological and other toxic substances (viz Botox- Botulin for wrinkles) would not help, to attain youthfulness, vigor and vitality. Yoga and meditation is suggested here, which is devoid of side effects and has lasting effect. (Infant, 2001; Travis, 1999;Travis,2001).

It enhances flexibility, regulates blood circulation, toning muscles, and redistributing body mass and enhances alertness and clarity of faculties of mind.

Yoga is a divine science, taking the mankind on the path of positive thinking. Its basis is banked on the homeostasis of all the systems as proposed by George Engel. The learned saints of ancient India discovered this process. Yoga is complete in every aspect as it touches the every sphere of human life. It is a complete science that provides a healthy lifestyle and a complete preventive medication system. Above all, it is an enlightening spiritual art. Saint Patanjali brought Yoga 5000 years ago, in a disciplined manner to preserve and produce the eight yogic practices in the form of Yoga Sutra.

Moreover, the popularity of Yoga lies in the fact that it has never bounded itself within the narrow-minded attitude of sex, community, area, religion, caste, and language.

Join us in one or our Chanting Yoga Retreats

Please visit our Chanting Yoga website here
And see you soon!

Yoga Maya Entertainment

A ‘New Wave’ for the 21st Century

As physicists try to uncover the base structure of matter, Yoga-Maya is working to uncover the profound psychological nature of cinema.

Historically, ’emerging’ technologies (eg. sound, color, CGI) have caused many evolutionary paths in cinema to be prematurely abandoned, leaving its true potential largely undiscovered.

This focus on technology – rather than movies – has left audiences uninspired and studios relying on marketing rather than content.

Cinema’s renaissance is about the magic of cinema; conceiving, producing and experiencing it. Yoga-Maya is all about this 21st century ‘New Wave’. Audiences are waiting.

The Mastermind

Matthew J. Morreale (Director/Writer) and Ana Lucia Alves (Producer/Actor) are the hearts and minds behind Yoga-Maya’s vision for the future of cinema.

Ana Lucia left Brazil at 18 to travel the world as a top model. Some time later, following her true calling, she studied acting and produced documentaries and short films. She’s a polyglot, now running both Yoga-Maya Entertainment and The Vedic Times Foundation.

Matthew was born in Mississippi and raised in England. He spent many years living and traveling in Europe, soaking up the culture, playing music and writing poetry. Then, with the gravitational pull of a black hole, cinema devoured him. Check out his ‘Cinema and the Psyche Podcast’.

To see more please visit Yoga Maya Films

We’re now working on our ‘Art Club’ Movie,
a ‘micro budget feature film’ for Cinemas.

To #GetInvolved please visit Ana’s Patreon page

“Film is a disease. When it infects your bloodstream, it takes over as the number one hormone; it bosses the enzymes; directs the pineal gland; plays Iago to your psyche. As with heroin, the antidote to film is more film.” Frank Capra
More @ YogaMayaFilms.com

Why an AYURVEDIC DIET ?

BECAUSE IT’S GOOD FOR YOU!

Ayurvedic Food Combining

For many, the concept of food combining—the idea that some foods digest well together while others do not—is entirely new, and somewhat foreign. But according to Ayurveda, it is an essential part of understanding how to eat properly, just as discovering one’s constitution and state of imbalance is important for one’s Ayurvedic self-discovery. Careful food combining can dramatically improve the quality of digestion, support the body in receiving a deeper level of nourishment, and positively impact our overall health.

However, most people in the modern world are accustomed to eating a number of foods that do not usually digest well together (like fruit with nuts, or beans with cheese). So why does it matter? The Ayurvedic perspective is that each food has a distinct combination of tastes and energies—and a corresponding effect on both the digestive system and on the body as a whole. Combining foods with radically different energetics can overwhelm the digestive fire (agni) and can cause indigestion, fermentation, gas, bloating, and the creation of toxins.1 This is why proper food combining is so important. Of course, certain combinations disturb the digestive tract more than others—an important consideration if this practice is entirely new to you. Regardless of your particular habits or symptoms, paying attention to how you combine foods can provide a valuable opportunity for insight, healing, and improved health. Remember, food combining is not about imposing black and white rules. It is one among many powerful Ayurvedic tools for improving digestive health and overall wellness.

A Balanced Approach to Food Combining

It is usually best to embrace the idea of food combining slowly and gently, allowing plenty of time to make the necessary adaptations. Some of the recommended adjustments are relatively simple; others can require a major recalibration in our habits, or be met with resistance. Often, simply developing an awareness of the improper food combinations that you eat somewhat regularly is a great place to start. Notice which foods you combine that may be difficult to digest together, and how often you indulge in them. Become aware of how you feel afterward. Do these choices affect your energy level, your digestion, your elimination, the coating on your tongue? Are particular combinations more noticeably influential than others? These are all important pieces of information. They can confirm the importance of proper food combining and can help each of us to identify the food combinations that are the most disruptive to our systems.

When you are feeling motivated and decide that you are ready to start adapting your diet to accommodate more supportive food combinations, consider tackling just one change at a time. Perhaps you’ll start by eating fruits alone, rather than in combination with other foods. Over time, you can gradually progress toward the ideal. While it would certainly be nice to avoid improper food combinations altogether, reducing their frequency can also be incredibly beneficial. If you do find that some specific food combinations are more problematic for you or your loved ones than others, focus your efforts on changing just those in the beginning. The most important first step is to become aware of your needs and your habits; from there, you can evolve an approach to food combining that works for you.

Combinations to Reduce or Avoid

The following list highlights incompatible foods and offers suggestions for more appropriate combinations. It is meant to be a helpful guide, not an exhaustive list. In fact, you may be aware of other combinations that do not work for your body. Honor those instincts. Because this resource is meant to help you determine optimal combinations at a glance, there is some repetition. Combinations listed in all caps are particularly challenging.

Compatible and Incompatible Foods: A List

Yes, some of these are staple combinations in many households. Pizza and a number of other beloved Italian dishes combine nightshades with cheese. And who among us hasn’t enjoyed beans with cheese at some time or another? Then there’s the fruit and yogurt taboo… So much for about 80% of all available store-bought varieties of yogurt; next time you indulge in a fruit-flavored yogurt, pay attention to how your digestion feels afterwards.In addition, there are some specific preparations that are challenging when combined with particular foods.

Supportive Food Combinations in Ayurveda
All of these rules can feel overwhelming, even irritatingly complicated. But, the rationale behind proper food combining really does make sense. Ultimately, combining mismatched foods generates ama , a toxic substance that is often at the root of imbalance and disease.2 But, for those of you who would like to understand a little more about HOW and WHY these food combinations tax our bodies, here are a few specific examples:

Bananas and Milk

Though commonly eaten together, bananas and milk are challenging to digest together because their qualities are so different. Bananas are heating while milk is cooling. That alone is problematic. Further, bananas become sour as they break down. So now our digestive fire has to process a sour substance and milk at the same time. Ever added a squeeze of lemon to milk? Or maybe you’ve poured a little milk into a tangy, fruity tea… only to watch it curdle instantly? What happens to these mismatched foods in the digestive tract is not much different. When bananas and milk are eaten together, their opposing qualities tend to smother the digestive fire and can disrupt the balance of intestinal flora, which results in the creation of toxins. This combination also frequently causes congestion, colds, coughs, allergies, hives, and rashes.2 A similar situation arises when we combine any sour fruit with milk.3

Eating Fruits Alone

The reason fruits are best enjoyed on their own is that fruit is usually somewhat acidic, fairly simple to digest, and often digests quite quickly. When fruits are eaten with other foods, there is usually a significant discrepancy between the amount of time required to properly digest the fruit versus the more complex food. Inhibited by the more complex food, the fruit tends to move through the digestive tract too slowly and can cause fermentation, gas, and bloating. In addition, the combination typically introduces a number of conflicting qualities into the digestive tract all at once, which has the potential to overwhelm or stifle the digestive fire.

Nightshades and Cheese

This combination is simply too taxing for the digestive fire. A nightshade is a common name for a member of the plant family Solanaceae, which includes potatoes, bell peppers, tomatoes, eggplants, cayenne peppers, paprika, tobacco, henbane, belladonna, datura, and over 2,500 other plants. Nightshades contain alkaloids, primarily as a means of defense against being damaged by insects. The alkaloids can be anywhere from mildly to fatally toxic to humans. As a result, diverse cultures around the world have long held an intriguing relationship with the nightshade family. Some have been used to make poisons, some contain incredibly addictive compounds such as nicotine, some are mind altering, and others create an incredible sensation of heat in the mouth.4 The bottom line is that nightshades contain a complex array of compounds that, once ingested, lead to a potentially dramatic cascade of chemical reactions in the body. Ayurvedically speaking, all nightshades are believed to be somewhat difficult to digest and to have the capacity to disturb the doshas. When we mix these inherently challenging nightshades with cheese—which is heavy, oily, and also difficult to digest—we can quickly overtax the digestive fire.

Beans and Cheese

Beans and cheese are similar in that they both tend to be heavy and are often difficult to digest. In order to break down properly, they both require a good deal of digestive strength. But, the similarities end there. Beans tend to taste mostly astringent and sweet, can be either heating or cooling (depending on the type of bean), and usually have a pungent post-digestive effect. Cheese, on the other hand, tastes predominantly sour, is almost always heating, and usually has a sour post-digestive effect. The post-digestive effect of different foods occurs once that food has moved into the colon; it affects the urine, feces, sweat and tissues—sometimes even at the cellular level. Two foods with distinct post-digestive effects are typically quite different from one another. This is the case with beans and cheese; when they are eaten together, they tend to overwhelm and confuse the digestive fire. Meanwhile, their combined heaviness makes them even more difficult to process, often resulting in poor digestion and the accumulation of ama.

Ease Into It

Embracing the wisdom of food combining slowly helps us to cultivate a refined awareness around how our dietary choices affect us. This heightened sensitivity can be an invaluable asset, regardless of how quickly we are able to replace improper food combinations with more supportive ones. Be gentle with yourself, progressing at a pace that works for you. You might find it helpful, on occasion, to take a moment to reflect on how your digestion and your overall sense of wellness have changed over time. Proper food combining tends to awaken the body’s innate intelligence, so for most, embracing good food combining habits gets easier with time and practice.

Much of the information contained in this article came from Dr. Vasant and Usha Lad’s cookbook: Ayurvedic Cooking for Self-Healing. Our deepest gratitude to them both for sharing an enlightened understanding of how to eat Ayurvedically.

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The Importance of Healthy Digestion
The concept of agni, the Sanskrit word for “fire,” is rather essential to the Ayurvedic tradition. Ayurveda views agni as the very source of life. It is said that a man is as old as his agni and that when agni is extinguished, we die. Perhaps even more significantly, Ayurveda teaches us that impaired agni is at the root of every imbalance and disease. So the importance of agni in Ayurveda simply cannot be understated.

Thank you ~ Banyan Botanicals