Daily routines ( Vedic Method)
Every human body switches to Hibernate Mode (for self maintenance and equilibrium of metabolism) from 3 hours after Sunset to 3 hours before Sunrise. (Namely between 9.30 pm to 3.30 pm.)
During the Hibernate Mode (for self maintenance and equilibrium of metabolism), one should not eat, walk, watch television, view gadgets or indulge in any type of physical or mental activity. If you do not follow this basic rule you may end up with mental disorders such as stress, tension, depression, sleep disorders, etc., and also physical disorders such as body ailments or diseases.
Our human body is the greatest asset given to us by the Almighty. Disturbing the body during the Hibernate Mode (for self maintenance and equilibrium of metabolism) namely between 9.30 pm and 4.30 am is a greater sin.
Have your dinner before 7.30 pm.
Go to bed around 9.30 pm.
Wake up around one and half hours before Sunrise
Have your breakfast before 9.30 am.
Have your lunch between 12.30 and 2 pm.
Have your dinner between 6.30 and 7.30 pm.
Take food harvested or can be harvested around 48 KMs around your Locales.
The daily regime or routine is called “Dinacharya” in Sanskrit. ‘Din’ means ‘day’ and ‘acharya’ means ‘to follow’ or ‘close to’.
The Ayurvedic Rishis (Saints) considered daily routine to be a stronger healing force than any other medicine.
6 A.M. to 10 A.M. – Kapha
10 A.M. to 2 P.M. – Pitta
2 P.M. to 6 P.M. – Vata
6 P.M. to 10 P.M. – Kapha
10 P.M. to 2 A.M. – Pitta
2 A.M to 6 A.M. – Vata
Considering the above cycles the ideal schedule should be like this :
Time to wake up: A healthy person should get up one and half hours before sunrise. During this hours the Vata element is dominant. Waking up two hours before dawn you utilize the Vata qualities in the nature. Vata is light, subtle and clear and this helps in tuning the body to a healthy state.
This is the time when there is the most sattva in the air. It is the most fresh and pure time of the day. Some exceptions to this rule of rising are the very young, the old, parents with small children, and people with fevers or diarrhea.
The Glory of Waking Up according to the Ayurveda
Pick what you like from the following steps of the waking up process (and why not all) :
Ayurveda believes that routine is a discipline for the body and mind which strengthens immunity and purifies the body of its wastes. With the help of simple healthy routines, one can clean the body and mind, balance . doshas., strengthen immunity and start the day on a refreshing and rejuvenating note.
Following simple routine in the morning will help you start the day on a blissful note. Here is your guide to a refreshing morning
Brahma muhurt (time of Brahma) is a period (muhurta) one and a half hours before sunrise—or more precisely, 1 hour and 36 minutes before sunrise. Literally meaning “The Creator’s Hour”, it is traditionally the penultimate phase or muhurta of the night and is considered an auspicious time for all practices of yoga and most appropriate for meditation, worship or any other religious practice. Spiritual activities performed early in the morning have a greater effect than in any other part of the day. Each muhurta lasts 48 minutes, and therefore the exact time of Brahma muhurta begins 1 hour and 36 minutes before sunrise, and ends 48 minutes before sunrise.
The time of sunrise varies each day, according to geographic location and time of year, thus the time of the Brahma muhurta also varies. For example, if sunrise is at 6am, the brahma muhurta begins at 4:24am. If sunrise is at 7am, brahma muhurta begins at 5:24am, and so on.
At this time, a high level of prana (vital life energy) which is necessary for the body is adequately present in the atmosphere. The pollution is at its minimum. The cheerful atmosphere has a considerable effect on the body and mind.In Sanskrit, the daily routine is called as Dinacharya. ‘Din’ means ‘day’ and ‘acharya’ means ‘to follow’ or ‘close to’. So, Dinacharya is an ideal daily schedule taking into account the nature’s cycle.
One should wake up about one and half hours before the sun rise so that you can synchronize with the rhythm of sun. Ayurveda recommends an auspicious time – Brahma-muhurata which means ‘the time of Brahma…the pure consciousnesses – for rising up in morning.
About 3 hours before the sunrise, a great shift in energy fills space. Then, about one and half an hour before sunrise, a second boom of energy dawns in the atmosphere. Hope, inspiration and peace manifest at this time.
This time is considered the best for attaining bhram gyan (meditation and self analysis), supreme knowledge and eternal happiness.
At this time, the environment is pure and calm and soothing and the mind is fresh after sleep.
Meditation at this time improves mental performance thus helps in increasing satva guna therefore subduing mental irritation or hyperactivity and lethargy which is contributed by rajas and tamas guna.
- Power of Breath
Check through which nostril your breath is flowing more strongly. According to Ayurveda, the right nostril is solar-pitta, and the left nostril is lunar-kapha. The right side of the brain controls creative activity while the left side controls logical verbal activity. According to research, when one breathe through the left nostril then the right side of the brain is more pre-dominant and vice versa.
- Positive Vibrations
Follow the ancient tradition of observing the lines in your palms and remember the Goddesses of Wealth, Knowledge and Power. Rub the fingertips with your thumbs in a circular soothing rhythm – right clockwise circles and then left anticlockwise circles. Rub the palms using fingertips and then turn the right wrist clockwise and the left wrist anticlockwise. First kiss the palm of that side of your body where the flow of breath is stronger, then kiss the other palm. (Kissing confers energy. By kissing your palm, you give your best vibrations to your most effective tool for self-expression.) Rub both hands together and move the palms slowly over your face, covering head, shoulders, arms, and legs, creating an energy shield which wards off negative influences for the whole of the day.
- Protection Mantra: Recite the protection mantra that belongs to this simple but effective morning ritual. Karaagre Vasate Lakshmi (In the front part of the hands, i.e. the fingertips, lives Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth) Karamadhye saraswati (In the middle part of the hands, i.e. the palm, lives Saraswati, the goddess of art and of learning). Karamoole tu govinda (In the end part of the hands, i.e. the root or wrist, lives Govindam, Lord Krishna) Prabhate kara darsanam (It is auspicious to see the hand in the morning). After reciting the mantra, sit silently with an empty mind for a few moments.
Relax – Do pranayama until the breath flows evenly through both nostrils. Meditate while centering your energy in the heart chakra or at the third eye.
Karaagre Vasate Lakshmi
(In the front part of the hands, i.e. the fingertips, lives Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth)
(In the middle part of the hands, i.e. the palm, lives Saraswati, the goddess of art and of learning)
Karamoole tu govinda
(In the end part of the hands, i.e. the root or wrist, lives Govindam, Lord Krishna)
Prabhate kara darsanam
(It is auspicious to see the hand in the morning)
- Positive Step
Step out of the bed and touch the ground with the leg that corresponds with the side of the body where the breath is flowing dominant (check nostrils).
- Clean Up
Rinse with cold water. Water is an electrical conductor and can never irritate sensitive tissues. Wash hands, face, mouth and eyes with cool water. Clean nose, teeth and tongue.
- Meditate and Exercise
Relax – do pranayama until the breath flows evenly through both nostrils. Meditate while centering your energy in the heart chakra or at the third eye. Take a short, slow walk in the fresh morning air. Surround yourself with simple and soothing visuals, preferable white items like fresh and fragrant flowers with subtle colors.
Vyayama or physical exercise comprises usually of some yoga postures like Surya Namaskar or sun salutation and breathing exercises like Nadi Shodhan Pranayam. But it can be anything including a walk or a swim.
Early morning exercises remove stagnation in the body and mind, strengthen the digestive fire, reduce fat and give you an overall feeling of lightness and joy as it fills your body with good prana.
However, instead of strenuous exercise, exercising at one fourth to one half of your capacity is recommended.
Massage: Abhyanga is the name for oil massage with sesame oil. This is typically a self massage. It is one of the main ways that Ayurveda keeps us strong and prevents us from aging.This massage need not be long and cumbersome. Massaging the Scalp, forehead, temples , hand and feet for about 5 minutes is sufficient
Exercise: Vyayama is the name for physical exercise. This is usually some Yoga postures and breathing exercises(Pranayam) but it can be anything including a walk, a swim, sun salutes or whatever.
This early morning exercise removes stagnation in the body mind, strengthens the digestive fire, reduces fat and gives you an overall feeling of lightness and Joy as it fills your body with good Prana. It is not to be strenuous. In fact, exercising at one fourth to one half of your capacity is recommended.
Surround yourself with simple and soothing visuals, preferable white items, avoid all disturbing visuals and people.
Concentrate on some fresh and fragrant flowers with subtle colors.
Sit by a fire.
Relax – do pranayama until Sushumna is activated (the breath will flow simultaneously equally strong through both the nostrils). About 10 minutes before sunrise Sushumna is naturally activated.
Concentrate – do tratak exercise and clean the eyes afterwards.
Meditate with the eyes closed, center your energy in the heart chakra or at the third eye.
Do some physical morning excercises.Take a short, slow walk in the fresh morning air.
Massage your body with oil on lunar days, i.e. Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
Bath your body from top to toe while humming. After exercise bath to remove any excess oil and dirt. Bathe Right: Bathe in water which is neither too hot nor too cold. Both showers and bathtubs are recommended in the classics. Put on clean clothing after the bath
Comb your hair with a wooden, silver or gold comb.
Meditation: For a few minutes to an hour sit down and see who you really are, put your attention towards Awareness. This is the most important aspect of Dinacharya. Simply be quiet, sit in Peace
Breakfast: This should be warm, nourishing and wholesome
Study / Work : Do what you do from now until noon
Lunch: It should be taken early between 12 and 2 P.M. this coincides with the peak Pitta period, Pitta is responsible for the digestion.
Sciesta: Anything more than a short nap should be avoided because sleeping in the day is prohibited in Ayurveda.
Study / Work : Do what you do from now until supper.
Sunset is a special time of balance between day and night. In this balance it is easier for your mind to stop long enough so that you can see your Self. This is the time for evening prayers and meditations in many cultures around the world.
Ease: From dinner to bedtime just take it easy. Spend time with family, read, and relax.
It should be taken around 7 P.M. The dinner should be at least two hours before bedtime as gives the body ample time to digest the food. Sleeping just after the dinner with a heavy stomach is not conducive to a sound sleep.
Go to sleep around 9 P.M. so that you can get 6 to 7 hours of sleep before 4:30 am. A good practice is to massage the soles of your feet with a calming oil before going to bed. This will calm your system and promote well being.
And remember to take your Triphala before sleep.
Insomnia, sleep disorders and sleep deprivation
Eat a good meal shortly before sunset, followed two hours later by a bath in lukewarm water.
Then go to bed, preferably listening to either drone instruments or the sound of rustling leaves.
The milk of a nursing mother brings relief when one drop is placed in each nostril.
Rinse the eyes with rosewater, then add a drop of ghee (clarified butter). Keep the eyes closed and sleep.
One should try to keep the routine as close to the recommended Dincharya as possible. The body might resist the change for a first few days but if you do manage to persist then you are bound to get rewarded with a much healthier and satisfying life.