When the milky ocean was churned by the Devas and Asuras using Meru, the mountain as the churning rod and Vasuki, the serpent as the rope, it first brought forth a terrible poison called Halahala. The compassionate Mahadeva consumed it before it could touch the earth, thus saving all life forms from annihilation. The devas and asuras continued their churn for Amrita, the divine elixir of Immortality. Then arose a beauteous form from the milky ocean, in his two hands were the Conch and the Wheel, (Shankha and Chakra), in the other two, he held a leech and the pot of nectar, (Jaluka and Amritakumbha). Thus the Lord manifested to mitigate the suffering of mankind from all diseases.
This form of Narayana, who is called Dhanwantri, is the Lord of healing and Ayurveda. He is also described as Adideva as he is the first divine being to rise from the milky ocean. The pot of nectar represents all herbs and medicines and the leech is a representation of treatments given for healing and curing. Leech therapy is one of the panchakarma procedures in Ayurveda.
At The Sacred Grove, pranapratishtha of Lord Dhanwantri is enshrined in the courtyard of the Wellness Center under the canopy of a forty-year-old tamarind tree. His form carved out of granite, has a naturally golden face, and the amritakumbha that he holds has the same natural golden hue.
Day begins at ArogyaM with our Yogacharya lighting the lamp at the pratishtha with Sri M’s audio rendering of the Gurustuti echoing the corridors and courtyards of the Wellness Center. Sometimes it is a guest evincing interest who undertakes this morning ritual. Every Thursday, our reigning deities, Madanagopala and Dhanwantari are given an abhyanga snana using our Ksheerabala oil. On many Thursdays, there is a care seeker or guest who participates in the ritual.
Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya Dhanwantarim
Şarvamaya vinashanaya Trailokya rakshaya
Sri Mahavishnave namah
‘Salutations to Lord Dhanwantri who is Vasudeva, who holds the pot of elixir in his hands, who destroys all diseases, is the protector of the three worlds. Prostrations to Sri Mahavishnu”.
Arogyam or health is a Sanskrit word derived from “a-roga”,which means absence of disease. The term “roga” is derived from the Sanskrit root “ruk” or pain. ArogyaM, the Wellness Center conceived by Sri M for Yoga and Ayurveda is situated at Sacred Grove, Chowdepalle.