“Having Been Always Existed, I.E. Without Any Beginning;
The Nature Of Eternal Entities Are Defined By Universal Essence,
Thus We Can Conclude That Ayurveda Is Eternally Continuing.
The Flow Of Life And Wisdom Has Been There Forever,
Aptly Explained As Nitya And Shashwata.”
For the science that has been tested time and again, be it soaring high or crashing hard, Ayurveda has faced it all. During the ancient Vedic Era spread of Ayurveda was on its peak. As the historic tale of the origin of diseases suggests, we know that diseases originated due to the fury of Lord Shiva. The face of Earth hadn’t known a single disease until then.
The first disease to harm mankind was Jwara (~fever). To relieve the mortal beings of Earth and restore the health, the scholars meditated to seek the solution. Ayurveda transcended to Earth immediately after this incident as the beings were sweltering with the fury of Lord Shiva and further passed through the channel.
Here, we are discussing broadly the rise and decline of Ayurveda in various eras of Indian History beginning with the Vedic Era. References of Ayurveda are mentioned in Rigveda sporadically, whereas majorly found in Atharva Veda. The wisdom was at its peak. Many scholars learnt science and adapted it to their lives.
During the Buddhist Era, 520 BC, Rasa Shastra and Siddha medicine were at rise. Advancement of Ayurveda attracted many foreign scholars to India to learn Alchemy. The medicines prepared during this era involved mercury, sulphur and metals with herbs.
Years around 300 BC are considered to be Golden Period of Ayurveda. After the Kalinga War, Emperor Ashoka resolved peace within himself and engaged to spirituality. No more wars and killing led to the decline of the branch of Ayurvedic Surgery, i.e., Shalya Tantra.
Around 400 BC, during the reign of Chandra Gupta Maurya, II, people were aware of maintaining their health and focussed on healing the diseases. This was then the Atreya Sampradaya acclaimed – The School of Ayurvedic Physicians.
Mughal Era– The Mughals were staunch to spread Islam and demolished Hinduism in India, thus they destroyed the oldest universities of Nalanda and Takshila. Many manuscripts and compilations were destroyed leading to the loss of wisdom from the texts. Since Mughals were inclined towards carnal pleasures, this period saw the prevalence of Rasayana and Vajikarana branches of Ayurveda.