Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:
It is called the Ayurveda. It is the subordinate Veda of the main four Vedas. So both, the Atharvaveda and Rigveda - the first and last Vedas have aconnection to Ayurveda. So all the Ayurveda stories are so very, very beautiful. It’s said that one thousand Rishis were sitting and meditating. And a Rishi named Bharadwaja told them, ‘You keep awake. We are going into deep trance, meditation and we are going to say just what we see. But there should be somebody to note down, write everything down’. They told once person, ‘You don't meditate. You sit, watch and note down everything’.And that is how Maharshi Bharadwaja noted down, wrote down in a forest when thousands of the Rishis meditated together and they were downloading it and thenthey were saying it. Bharadwaja went from one to another, to each person and started noting them down and that is how the Ayurveda books were written. So even today, after so many thousands of years, it holds good. It is a Materia Medica - which herb is for which part of the body and what functions, what arethe combinations, what one should do and what oneshould not. Everything about health is written.When the British ruled India and the man who was in charge of India, the British gentleman, wrote to Queen Victoria of England saying, ‘You know, people should come and learn plastic surgery over here. How people can fix your nose, your skin, your legs,’ he said. It’s amazing that when knowledge was zero or nothing in England, it was so advanced in India. Lord Macaulay said in the parliament, that if you want to rule this country (India), first you must destroy the spirituality. Much has been written about Lord Macaulay's statement. He said, ‘I traveled the length and breadth of India and I did not see one beggar,one poor man. And people know science and medical things so well. 88000 medical institutions were there only in the south of India.’He said, if you want to rule this country, you must stop this. So they systematically closed down the medical institutions, Sanskrit colleges so that people could no longer read the books. You know, when all your books are in Sanskrit and they shut down all the Sanskrit schools by rule, your next generation getsno access to the knowledge and that is what exactly happened in India. There is a whole presentation about Lord Macaulay's vision that they could rule India only by doing this. Anyway, that is all history.What I am saying is that Ayurveda is still very potent knowledge- it’s a science even today. Hmmm? But many books are missing. Many were burnt down. India had a very crazy king at one point of time, he was called Aurangzeb. He came to power by putting his own father in jail who was the king then. And then he burnt big libraries in India like Nalanda. History says that the books in Nalanda library burned for six months. He called all the scholars and he told them, ‘What is in your library?’ They said, ‘A lot of knowledge.’ He was very fanatic. He took the Quran and asked, ‘Do you agree that this book has all the knowledge that is there in the library?’ They said, ‘Yes’. He said, ‘Then what is the use of having a library and so many books? Burn them down.Then one of them said, ‘No. There is other knowledge that is not in this book.’ Then Aurangzeb said, ‘Then they shouldn't exist. Anything which is not in this book shouldn't exist anywhere, it is not correct. It is not God’s! Burn them down. Thousands of years ago, philosophy of the Buddhists, Hindus, Jains,Sikh were available; medical, archeology, astronomy, metallurgy, engineering, science - all these books - were available. They were all burnt down. So whatever people could take overnight and memorize it, those things remained and it continued. So these are all past histories.