Dinacharya Adhyaya: Daily Routine According to Ayurveda
We shall now discuss the Dinacharya Adhyaya, which is the chapter on daily regimen as
preached by Atreya and other great sages.1
Daily Routine According to Ayurveda
The ideal time to wake up in the morning as per Ayurveda
Getting up early in the morning :
To protect our life, the healthy individual should get up during brahSunmuhurta, which is around 45 minutes before Sunrise, that is, around 5 – 6 am. which is the last prahara of the night. Last three hours of the night – from 3 am to 6 am – Is known as brahma muhurta.
DANTA DHAVANA / CLEANING OF TEETH
Cleaning of the teeth
After brushing his teeth and taking care of his ablutions, the person should wash his mouth with twigs from plants like arka, nyagrodha, khadira, Karanja, and kakubha keeping in mind the condition of his body. One could also use twigs of those plants that are astringent, pungent, and bitter. The twigs should be the size of the tip of the little finger in thickness and twelve fingers (angulas) breadth in length and straight; its top should be turned into the shape of a soft brush by chewing. One should ensure the gums are not hurt while teeth are brushed. 2-3
Danta Dhawana Nishedha – Who should avoid brushing your teeth?
The following individuals should not use toothbrush: those suffering from indigestion, vomiting, dyspnoea, cough, fever, facial paralysis, morbid thirst, and ulcerations of mouth, disease of the heart, eyes, head, and ears. 4
Anjana – Collyrium
Collyrium, to the eyes It is good to apply Sauviranjana to the eyes; hence, it should be applied daily. The eye is full of light (Tejas) and has a risk of damage, especially from kapha or sleshma.
Therefore, the rasanjana should be applied once a week. It drains out the kapha. 5
Navana and Gandusha
Subsequently, the individual should make use of nasal drops (navana), mouth gargles (gandusha), inhalation of smoke (dhuma), and chewing of betel Ieaves (tambula). 6
Contraindication for Tambula – betel leaf chewing
To those suffering from wounds, bleeding disease, dryness and redness of the eyes, poisoning, unconsciousness, intoxication, and also from tuberculosis, betel-chewing(Tambula) is harmful, 7
Abhyanga – oil massage
The oil massage and bath (Abhyanga) should be taken daily. The advantages of the oil massage and bath are that delays old age, and reduces exertion and aggravation of vata; improves good vision, provides nourishment to the body, equips one with a long life,
good sleep, good and healthy skin. It could be administered especially to the head, ear, and feet. Individuals suffering from aggravation of kapha, who have just undergone purificatory therapies / Panchkarma and who are suffering from indigestion should avoid Abhyanga. 8-9
Vyayama – exercise
Features like the lightness of the body, ability to do hard work, keen digestion, depletion of excessive fat, and stable and distinct physique are obtained from physical exercise(vyayama). 10
Exercise should be avoided by people with indigestion, children, the elderly, and vata and pitta diseases.
Individuals who are strong and who take oily eatables daily should exercise to half of their strength in cold and spring seasons, while in other seasons, they should perform a light exercise only. 11
After the exercises are performed, all parts of the body should be massaged comfortably. 12
Adverse effects of over-exercise:
Too much exercise could produce thirst, emaciation, severe dyspnoea, bleeding diseases, exhaustion, the feeling of debility, cough, fever, vomiting, and the like morbid conditions. 13
The individuals who could like an attack of a lion on an elephant could meet an untimely death includes the following: one who does too much physical exercise, who keeps awake at night, walk long distances, indulge in too much sexual intercourse, too much of laughing, speaking and other strenuous activities. 14
Udvartana –(powder – massage)
When the body is given a massage with soft, fragrant powders (Udvartana), it actuates kapha and liquifies the fat in the body. Moreover, the stability, compactness, strength of the body parts, and excellence of the skin are also achieved by massage. 15
Snana – Bathing in Ayurveda
Bath in ayurveda
Improvement of appetite, sexual vigor, span of life, enthusiasm, and strength are the advantages of a bath (Snana). Moreover, bathing eliminates itching, dirt, exhaustion, sweat, stupor, thirst, the burning sensation, and sin as well. 16
Bath with hot water makes one lose strength of the hair and eyes, if the water is
poured over the head, but it provides strength if the same is poured over the body. 17
Those individuals suffering from facial paralysis, disease of the eyes, mouth, and ears, diarrhea, flatulence, and discharge of foul-smelling liquid from the nose (pinasa), who have just taken eatables and are suffering from indigestion should not take a bath. 18
Sad Vritta – Good/healthy conduct:
Only after the previous meal is digested the person should take eatable; the meal should be suitable to him and be in a limited quantity. The urges of the body should not be initiated by force. One should not be engaged in other works when the urges are being felt. If a difficult disease is manifesting, one should first treat it, and then one should not take care of anything. 19
Words of wisdom: Path of righteousness:
The happiness of all living beings depends upon the activities of human beings; such happiness is based on righteousness, right moral conduct (dharma). Therefore a policy of righteousness should be followed by every individual. 20
One should be affectionate to one’s friends and serve them with good deeds, and one should not be in the company of bad fellows.
Types of bad deeds
The ten sins which should be strictly avoided include the following:
1. Causing injury torture, and the like (Himsa),
2. Stealing, robbery (Steya),
3. Unlawful sexual activity (Anyathakamd),
4. Back-biting (Paisunya),
5. Harsh (Parusa) speech,
6. Scolding, speaking untruth (Anrta vacana),
7. Speech that causes confusion, separation, breaking of company (sambhinna alapa),
8. Quarrel, the intention of harming (Vyapadd),
9. Jealousy, not tolerating good of others (Abhidya) and
10. Finding fault, causing misunderstanding, faithlessness, and the like regarding the scriptures, elders, and the like (Drgyiparyayd).
These ten sins pertaining to the body, speech, and mind should be avoided in order to have a peaceful and healthy life. 21-22
Maximum help should be provided to those who have no means of livelihood, are
suffering from diseases, and are afflicted with grief. Even insects and ants should be treated with compassion and kindness as one treats oneself. 23
Gods, cows, brahmana, elders, physicians, kings and guests should be worshipped by the people.
Even the beggars must not be disappointed, abused, or rejected. 24.
A person should remain helpful to the enemy causing damage to him. One should maintain a uniform state of mind during the period of wealth as well as during hardship. Even though a person remains envious of the cause of wealth, happiness, well-being, and the like of others he should not be jealous of the effect of money, happiness, and the like. 25
As suggested by the occasion related, one should speak soothingly and laconically and use words which are not untrue and are pleasing to the ear and heart.
With a pleasant face, one must do a conversation with others; one should be virtuous, kind, and soft in demeanour, should not feel comfortable and happy by him, and should involve others in one’s happiness. One should neither believe everybody nor suspect everyone; one should not reveal that he has enmity toward someone, and neither should one report to others that somebody is his enemy. One should also not make it public if he has got insulted. If a person has developed an uncomfortable relationship with his employer, he should also conceal this fact.
One should deal with the people in such manner as best pleasing to them keeping in view their nature. Becoming well-versed in the art of adoring others will always prove beneficial. 26-28.
The sensory organs shouldn’t be fondled or put under excessive strain.
The person must not involve himself in occupations that do not contain righteousness (dharma), wealth (artha) and pleasure (kama). Without going contrary to these pursuits one should carry on one’s activities.
One should avoid the extremes as a policy as the middle mean is always the best. 30
One should cut his hair, nails and moustaches by not allowing them to grow long, keep his feet and orifices of waste substances and the ears, nose, eyes, urethra and anus neat, and clean; take bath daily. Good dress which is not superfluous but is pleasant to look at should be used and one should also put on scents. 31
An individual should wear ornaments as well as the following: precious stones, potent
hymns and herbs preserved inside amulets. In case one moves at night for an urgency one
should walk holding an umbrella, putting on footwear and looking straight to the distance of four arms length in front of himself; and one must move equipped with a baton, head-dress and an assistant 32
The person must not invade, set foot on or traverse the shade of a holy tree on which deities reside. A Buddhist shrine should also be treated in similar fashion. One should also not traverse shadow of an untouchable. The substances of worship, flag and unholy things, heap of ash, husk and dirt, sand dunes, boulders, places of offering to gods or demons (bali) and bathing places are also taken care of and one should not cross them too. 33
One must not swim across river with arms, should not approach huge fire, should not travel in an undependable boat and one should also not climb a tree which has an unagreeable record; mounting a defective vehicle is also to be avoided. 34
One should cover his mouth, must not blow his-nose except for forcing out the dirty excretion, should not scratch the ground without any purpose should also not project ugly movements of the parts of the body and should not sit on one’s own heel for long hours. 35-36
Before becoming tired, the person must stop all physical, verbal, and mental activity. They must also avoid lying or standing on their hands for an extended amount of time with their legs folded at the knees and erect.
One should not continue in night at junction of four roads, or place where people assemble for recreation. Staying in the vicinity of a holy tree or a Buddhist shrine, junction of four roads and a temple is also to be avoided during night. One should not reside even during day time in place of slaughter, forest, hauled house and a bSunal ground. 37 – 38
One should not see the sun for a long time. One should not carry heavy weight on one’s head, not see objects in a continuous manner, one should also not see objects that are minute bright, filthy and unpleasant 39
The activities in which the person should not involve himself include the following:
selling, brewing, distributing free or receiving wine. The person should stay out of the direct breeze, sunlight, dust, snow, harsh breezes, whirlwinds, and similar conditions. They also shouldn’t sneeze, belch, cough, sleep, eat, or engage in sexual activity while posing improperly. The person should stay away from places the king despises and places with scaffolding’s shade. 40-41
One must avoid the company of the following: wild animals, biting animals, and those with horns. The wicked, uncivilised and very talented individuals are also to be avoided. One should also avoid quarrel with individuals that are better-placed. At the time of sunset or sunrise, one should avoid taking eatables, copulation, sleeping and studying. One should also avoid the eatables given by the enemies, offered during sacrificial ceremony, eatables given by prostitutes and merchants. One should not produce sound with the body parts,
mouth and nails, should not shake the hand hairs; should not move in between two receptacles of water, fire and the honourable; should avoid the smoke of a cadaver. Moreover, too much indulgence in wine and believing on women and allowing them independence are also the factors to be avoided. 42-44
The whole world is a teacher for a talented individual, hence after considering the meaning and effects of social factors the actions and demeanours of the society should be imitated,45
Compassion towards all living beings granting of gifts, controlling the activities of the body, speech and mind; feeling of selfishness in the interest of others are considered as good conduct and moral behaviour.
If a person continuously reviews how his day and night are passing and subsequently adopts the appropriate way he would never become a victim of sorrow. 46-47
Thus the rules of good conduct are explained in brief; a long life, health, wealth, reputation are attained by one who follows the above rules and after death he also obtains eternal peace and happiness. 48
Thus ends the chapter called Dinacarya, the second in sutrasthana of Astanga hrudaya composed by Srimad Vaghata, son of Sri Vaidyapati Simhagupta.
Ayushkameeya Adhyaya “Desire for long life.” आयुष्कामीय अध्याय : Ashtanga Hridayam Sutra Sthana Chapter 1
FAQs of Daily Routine
when to wake up in the morning as per Ayurveda
45 minutes before sunrise, around 5-6 am
How to Clean Teeth in Ayurveda
twigs from plants like arka, nyagrodha, khadira, Karanja, and kakubha
Who should avoid brushing their teeth?
indigestion, vomiting, dyspnoea, cough, fever, facial paralysis, morbid thirst, and ulcerations of the mouth, disease of the heart, eyes, head, and ears.
Anjana, as per Ayurveda on daily basis collyrium
Rasanjana should be applied once a week
Mouth Gargaling Navana and Gandusha as per Ayurveda
The individual should make use of nasal drops (navana), mouth gargles (gandusha) inhalation of smoke (dhuma), and chewing of betel Ieaves (tambula)
Contraindication for Tambula – betel leaf chewing
To those suffering from wounds, bleeding disease, dryness and redness of the eyes,poisoning, unconsciousness, intoxication and also from tuberculosis, betel-chewing(Tambula) is harmful.
Who Should Avoid Body Massage?
Individuals suffering from aggravation of kapha, who have just undergone purificatory therapies / Panchkarma and who are suffering from indigestion should avoid Abhyanga.
What are the advantages of body massage with oil?
The advantages of the oil massage and bath are that delays old age, and reduces exertion and aggravation of vata, improve good vision, provides nourishment to the body, equips one with a long life, good sleep, good and healthy skin.
Who should not Exercise?
Exercise should be avoided by people with indigestion, children, the elderly, and vata and pitta diseases.
Features of Proper Exercise
Features like lightness of the body, ability to do hard work, keen digestion, depletion of the excessive fat, stable and distinct physique are obtained from physical exercise.
Exercise during different seasons
Individuals who are strong and who take oily eatables daily should exercise to half of their strength in cold and spring seasons; while in other seasons, they should perform a light exercise only.
What are the adverse effects of over-exercise?
Too much of exercise could produce thirst, emaciation, severe dyspnoea, bleeding diseases, exhaustion, feeling of debility, cough, fever, and vomiting and the like morbid conditions.
What is Udvartana?
The body is given a massage with soft, fragrant powders (Udvartana)
Benefits of Udvartana
Reduces kapha, and liquifies the fat in the body. Moreover, the stability, compactness, strength of the body parts and excellence of the skin is also achieved by massage.
Benefits of bath according to Ayurveda?
Improvement of appetite, sexual vigour, span of life, enthusiasm and strength are the advantages of bath (Snana). Moreover, the bathing eliminates itching, dirt, exhaustion, sweat, stupor, thirst, the burning sensation and sin as well.
Bath with Hot water according to Ayurveda
Bath with hot water makes one to lose strength of the hair and eyes, if the water is poured over the head but it provides strength if the same is poured over the body
Who should not Bath According to Ayurveda?
Those individuals suffering from facial paralysis, disease of the eyes, mouth and ears, diarrhoea, flatulence, discharge of foul smelling liquid from the nose (pinasa), who have just taken eatables and are suffering from indigestion should not take bath.