Cleansing out toxins

A SPIRITED SOUL - Jeannie E. Javelosa (The Philippine Star) - July 27, 2014 - 12:00am

I cannot emphasize more than ever that we need to take time off to have periodic cleansing. I would even emphatically say cleansing (or the new in-word “detox”) should be done on a daily basis so we can keep ourselves balanced. We need to make “balance” a daily practice through the choices we make.

First, there is a need to stand APART from externalities that we are bombarded with on a daily basis, which, if we are not aware of, will make us all stressed, harassed, angry, tired. These factors cause overeating, stressful relationships, which inevitably will be followed by disease and sickness.

By WE, I mean our body, and not just the physical body, but the five bodies that include the physical, astral, emotional mental and spiritual shields that make up the sum of our human energy fields. Stress enters through all of them. So cleansing may take the form of physical — juicing, diet, saunas, exercise;  astral — by moving away from the toxic city environs with so much electromagnetic fields that can affect the nervous system, ergo: think pristine nature to surround you; emotional — by keeping away from negative people or emotions that bring you down; mental — cleansing from technology so our minds don’t go all stressed with the tons of information streaming through all our devices; and spiritual — cleansing psychosis and neurosis, working our fears and anxieties through cleansing techniques of meditation for example.

One of my real hard-core cleansing processes I have embraced is the ancient Ayurvedic science and art of Panchakarma, which is offered by Arogya on Mayapis Street in Makati City. In my opinion, Arogya offers the most authentic traditional treatments using traditional healing oils from India. I am pretty much a purist and traditionalist when it comes to the things I do, from yoga and tracing my food sources etc. etc…that when I heard about Arogya some years back, I went sleuthing to check it out. I was hooked. My very first experience made me feel alive and full of vitality.

I made friends with Patrick Eyquem, a monk in the world. He is a member and former student of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the teacher who developed and started the Transcendental Meditation technique and built a worldwide organization founded on the Vedic principles and teachings. Patrick has had the good fortune of studying the Vedic knowledge through the decades, and is really more Indian than he is French! The healing modalities of Arogya are made authentic by Patrick’s approach of strictly continuing the tradition of Ayurveda.

Thousands of years ago, the ancient Ayurvedic physicians developed Panchakarma, an elegant cleansing process that releases physical and emotional toxins at the cellular level, restoring the body’s innate healing ability. It is all about the time-proven art of detoxification, purification and rejuvenation. It is so subtle but powerful a way to address the root cause of disease and has been used for thousands of years as a method for staying healthy, young  and vital. According to Ayurveda, good health depends upon our capability to fully metabolize all aspects of life, assimilating that which nourishes and eliminating the rest. When we can’t completely digest our food, experiences and emotions, toxins accumulate in our bodily tissues, creating imbalance and — ultimately — disease.

The Panchakarma treatment takes place over the course of several days or longer (I usually try to squeeze it in during changes of the seasons), giving the body adequate time to rest and experience the complete healing benefits. Patrick now oversees all the patients and people who come to Arogya. His Arogya technicians were trained in the traditional Kerala way by Shinoj Chooprath, who came from India and conducted training through several months just before they opened in the Philippines.

When Arogya first opened a couple of years back, it took time before the locals understood what they were all about. Only after real sicknesses (arthritis, early-stage cancer, high blood, diabetes, high cholesterol, overweight, eye problems) have been cured through the treatments did local doctors begin sending patients to Arogya under Patrick’s watchful care as he studies the patients’ needs then mixes the specific essential oils that are uniquely used for each treatment.

Arogya now had to open seven days a week to give way for the demand for treatments. Arogya works in cooperation with Asthavaidyas, the oldest traditional families in Kerala who are the depositories of pure Ayurvedic knowledge. Pure and traditional. I have to repeat this: pure and traditional. Only because nowadays, there are a million and one more commercial groups that put up the sign “Ayurveda” and have watered down the oils and treatments.

Panchakarma treatments, done a couple of days, are often done seasonally, but anytime is a perfect time especially when you feel out of balance or sick. And you can choose from a variety of one-off treatments to restore balance: from work done in your energy points, to having warm soothing herbal infused oils, buttermilk or yoghurt poured on you, massaging herbs or pounded on your body with herbal compresses and medicated powders — the treatments all make you come wonderfully alive.

I call it the “ultimate” mind-body healing experience to detoxify the body because the specific mixtures of oils are massaged on the skin by two synchronized therapists, and penetrates deep and into the organs. Some people have even seen how the oils are secreted through the stools that prove the oils do reach the body organs. Not only does Panchakarma detoxify the body, it also strengthens the immune system and restores a deep, deep, deep (I can keep adding this word for emphasis) balance and well-being. I do believe it penetrates all the way in the subconscious and spirit level (I have fallen into visions during treatments).

Having made a pact with myself that I will live balance, consciously and happily, my personal yoga practices, balanced by Ayurvedic principles, have kept me going. Okay, slipping now and then, but there nevertheless…and allows some guiding principles for me to live by sustainably and holistically.


(For best results, consult your doctor.)

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