Ayurveda – The Mother of HealingBonnie Black November 1, 2014
Indian Head Massage Makes Me Feel 10 Years Younger
Having recently experienced a sampling of Ayurvedic healing when I visited The Andrea Olivera Centre for Ayurveda for an Indian head massage, I assure you the subtitle above is apt. A novice to this mode of healing, I had no idea what to expect – and was pleasantly surprised.
Ayurveda, ‘the science of life and longevity through the balance of body, mind and spirit’, is the ancient system of medicine practiced in India for thousands of years. Fundamental to Ayurvedic principles and practices are the five elements: ether, air, fire, water, and earth. Identifying your personal Dosha – Vata, Pitta, or Kapha (the Ayurvedic names given to these elemental relationships), is done by discovering which of the elements are predominant in your personal constitution (discovering my own dosha was worth the visit all by itself, but the best was yet to come).
In a room filled with the aroma of exotic essential oils, and an aura of blissful calm, we started with an introductory chat. Ayurveda seeks to uncover the cause of both biological and emotional conditions. Balance and optimal health can be reached when these causes are understood and addressed accordingly.
So the next step was to discover the blend of healing oils which perfectly matched my dosha. This involved inhaling a variety of sumptuous scents, and choosing which ‘spoke’ to me. Then, through a process of olfactory elimination by me, and evaluation by Andrea, my personal dosha was revealed. Being slightly analytical by nature, but also knowing myself, I was surprised by how accurate this science is.
What followed was a divine head and shoulder massage, for which my custom blend of oils was used to clear away tension and put me in a state of deep, healing relaxation.
Indian head massage, also known as Champissage, was originally developed by women who used different oils (coconut, sesame, almond, olive, mustard oils, herbal oils, buttermilk, and henna) to keep their hair strong, lustrous, and healthy. Then in 1973, physical therapist Narendra Mehta explored the ways that this therapy could benefit by being extended to include the face, neck, upper arms, and shoulders – areas that accumulate high levels of stress and tension.
He also discovered that, by introducing an Ayurvedic element into the massage to include work on the three higher Chakras, the body’s entire energy system could be rebalanced. Thus, Indian Champissage™ was developed from an ancient practice to become an effective contemporary therapy termed “a genuine renaissance of the multidimensional healing systems from ancient civilizations”. It was introduced to the world in the 1981 U.K. exhibition, ‘Mind, Body and Spirit’.
My session with Andrea left me floating on air, and the effects carried over to the next day when my co-worker asked: “What happened to you? Your face looks ten years younger.” I felt it too.
For further information, or to book an appointment (for yourself or a loved one) contact Ayurveda Rituals Spa (416) 504-6049, (Location: 1081 Bathurst Street, Toronto), or visit their website: www.ayurvedaritualsspa.com