“Ayurveda and Traditional Healthcare in Southeast Asia – AN ASEAN UMBRELLA OF SHARED HERITAGE”
ASEAN is linked to Indian subcontinent since time immemorial. The cultural, religious and ethical similarities have always been highlighted. The traces of ASEAN-India cultural links which have been continuously recorded since more than 2000 years ago. This included trade, maritime, religious and cultural links. It is right time to popularise the medicinal and traditional health care prevalent between India and ASEAN. This two day Workshop is aimed at bringing the experts on Ayurveda and traditional health care professionals on a single platform to highlight the unison in their practice.
There is an assimilation of Indian mythology and folklore into local mythology of the South East Asian region. Even though Hinduism did not take root as a major religion, Hindu texts became part of the historical-cultural DNA of the people across South East Asia. In Indonesia, the Ramayana is called the Kakawin Ramayana, whilst the Malay version is called the Ramayana Hikayat Seri Rama.The Thai Epic, Ramakien is based on the Ramayana, and the city of Ayotthaya was named after Ayodhya. In Lao PDR, the popular version of the Ramayana is called Pha Lak Pha Lam, whilst in the Philippines, the folk narrative holds much resemblance to the Ramayana. An adaptation of the Ramayana called the Yama Zatddaw was also introduced as an oral tradition in Myanmar.
The need of the hour is to put due focus on inter-traditional health links and underscore the promotion of the herbal diversity of INDIA and ASEAN. Both the regions are among the most bio diverse regions in the world.
In recent past, the concept of Alternative Medicine and Holistic Approach to make the human world less suffering from the side-effects of modern allopathic medicine has grown phenomenally large. With these aims, we are taking lead under the guidance and leadership of India and its culture where Ayurveda is a big demand. Ayurveda and Yoga have passed the litmus test on scientific grounds too. It would also serve the health needs to be available for those who are members of developing or underdeveloped countries in Southeast Asia.
Ayurveda has its awareness well known in the region of Southeast Asia, and it arrived there along with other Indian vestiges, heritage and wisdom. With similar flora and vegetation, Southeast Asia developed fast the concept of traditional healings, prevention and cure of health related issues as evidenced in numerous palm-leaf manuscripts which have Sanskrit terms related to the basic concepts of the Ayurveda. With the thrust of the India for not only looking at East (Look East Policy) but also for acting (Act East Policy), time has come when we share and exchange the ideas for the healthcare in traditional way.
All countries in the South-East Asia Region have a heritage of traditional systems of medicine. There are large numbers of traditional medicine practitioners who provide help and service to the ill and the needy. The World Health Organization reported that 70% to 80% of the world population relies mainly on herbal sources for their primary medicines.
Traditional medicine or complementary and alternative medicine (TM/CAM) is an integral part of the practice of ancient civilization in India and ASEAN. It was developed by our ancestors to improve the health and well-being of people in our respective countries and throughout the world. The various modalities currently practiced are based on theory, beliefs, and experiences that are indigenous to the different cultures and developed and handed down from generation to generation.
Herbal medicine usage is not only popular among individuals, but also among primary health care providers in the countries. Herbal medicines are also practiced in countries where conventional medicines are predominant. Ayurveda, which means the Science of Life, is the oldest medical science in the Indian subcontinent and has been practised since the 12th Century BC. Ayurveda is not merely a system of medicine; rather it is a way of life.
Jamu/ Usada in Indonesia, traditional Thai medicine (TTM) in Thailand, Traditional Vietnamese medicine (Y học Cổ truyền Việt Nam), also known as Southern Herbology (Thuốc Nam), Myanmar Taayin Set (Myanmar Traditional medicine) are a few to describe. It is right time to popularise the medicinal and traditional health care prevalent between India and ASEAN.
This two day conference is aimed at bringing the experts on Ayurveda and traditional health care professionals on a single platform to highlight the unison in their practice.
Regulated and selective export of some of these medicinal plants being eagerly sought after in other parts of the world could considerably enhance the foreign exchange earnings of countries with this biodiversity.