Understanding the Relationship Between Ayurveda and Yoga
The terms Ayurveda and yoga both come from the ancient vedic tradition. In order to understand how yoga relates to Ayurveda it is first necessary to understand the true meaning of both yoga and Ayurveda.
What is yoga?
The word yoga literally translates from Sanskrit (the language of the veda), to english as meaning "union". Union of what? Union of consciousness, when there is perfect communication between the mind and the body. This union of consciousness is attainable through correct mediation*. The physical poses called yoga today are also part of yoga, their role is to prepare the body for meditation.
* The Transcendental Meditation Technique
What is Ayurveda
Ayurveda literally translates from Sanskrit to English as "Life Knowledge". Ayurveda is a section of the vedic literature that describes how to restore balance within mind and the body. Today Ayurveda is understood as a form a medicine as well as a way of rejuvenation the body, but the true purpose of Ayurveda is much more profound. Ayurveda is for achieving immortality through perfect balance. Immorality is achieved when the body is in perfect balance because when in perfect balance it becomes an embodiment of the unchanging sphere of life and ceases to age.
Yoga (Union) is the Goal of Ayurveda
Ayurveda is usually associated with healing, healing by creating balance where balance had been lost. However Ayurveda offers more than just healing. Correctly performed Ayurveda balances both the mind and the body simultaneously so that Yoga (Union) can easily be experienced.
Yoga is also part of Ayurveda
Practice of yoga (both physical poses and meditation*) is also an important part of achieving perfect balance through Ayurveda. The different Ayurvedic treatments (whilst always valuable to everyone) do not provide their full potential until the physiology is first refined through practice of meditation*(Yoga). So yoga and Ayurveda work together, Ayurveda purifies the body and enhances the experience of of yoga practice, then the Yoga practice refines the mind and the body so that Ayurvedic medicines and treatments can offer their full potential.
* The Transcendental Mediation Technique