Ayushman 2020: The Role of Samskrtam in Learning Ayurveda 

Do not miss: Pramana: Resources and Sources - Center for Soft Power (softpowermag.com) on December 6th at 6 pm.

In a medical world conversing with all sophisticated medical terms, many students of  Ayurveda, who have not yet identified the depths of the science are lost without Sanskritam. Students who  take the efforts to learn Ayurveda through Samskrtam today are rather looked down upon and ridiculed  with the question, “Are you going to converse in Sanskrit with your patients?”  

If you’re one of those who find it rather tedious, useless or old school to learn Ayurveda  through Sanskrit, heads up! You’re wrong, Prof. Venugopalan tells you why.  A single drug called “Haritaki” is termed variously with names such as Kayastha, Abhaya,  Amrta, Shiva, Pathya and many more. If you think these are mere synonyms and you can cover  all the meanings conveyed by learning them simply as “Chebulic myrobalan”, you can't really. Each  word expresses a particular attribute of the same plant. Among the various synonyms, why a  specific word is chosen in a specific context is for us to analyse in every such instance. Sadly,  translations will essentially fail to deliver this, because all of these words will have to be translated  to Chebulic myrobalan or just Haritaki, for usages such as “100 fruits of fear remover” would  simply make no sense. 

Translating the names of diseases into English is a bigger blunder. If you have studied the  chapter on “jwara” well, you would know that “fever” does not comprise it all.  It is, therefore, essential to let “jwara” remain as “jwara” and “abhaya” remain as “abhaya”. Translations from Sanskrit into any other language would fall short of several other  nuances. Some words, for instance, have more than one meaning, but the translated word may  not be equally versatile. Translation, thus, kills the scope of broad thinking.  Let us discover, with Prof.Venugopalan, why it is important to incorporate Sanskrit as an  inseparable part of Ayurvedic education. With his vast experience in teaching Sanskrit to students  of Ayurveda, he shall also share some tips and methods of studying Sanskrit the right way, tailored  to Ayurveda. He assures that those who learn Ayurveda through Sanskrit will certainly stand apart  - academically, clinically and beyond.