05 min read

No Time For Time

​I once met a British man at the airport in Mumbai.  We were going through security.  He was carrying with him a large electronic device that look liked an oscilloscope and so it caught my attention. The last time that I had seen an oscilloscope was in science class in grade 9!

So I asked the gentlemen, “What’s that?”

He replied, “It’s a breathalyzer.”

Curious and amazed, I asked, “For what? Detecting alcohol?”

“No. It’s for treating sleep apnea. I have a serious case of it,” he said.

So then I asked, “Have you ever considered Ayurvedic treatment?”

He answered curtly, “Yes. I don’t have time for it.”

And that was that. We went our separate ways. I did not try to convince the man that he had something to gain from Ayurveda. He had clearly made a decision and obviously preferred to carry around a very heavy weight on his shoulders. Literally.

The paradox of time

My friend at the airport was not unique. Many of us love saying, “I don’t have time.” It’s one of the most famous and overused expressions in modern life.

Think about it.

We don’t have time to work out. We don’t have time to eat right. We don’t have time to listen to someone in need. We don’t have time for church or prayer. We don’t have time to get in touch with an emotionally distant family member or long lost friend. And we definitely don’t have time for a detox in India.

Are we too busy in our lives to look after our health? It’s time to reflect.

But we have time for popping pills. We have time for intoxicating the body and mind. And we definitely have time for surgery, especially if the government is paying for it.

This is the paradox: we have time for what we don’t need, but don’t have time for what we truly need.

When I take an honest look at my life, I see there are things that I avoid under the guise of not having time. But a wise friend once said to me, “It’s not that you don’t have time; it’s that you don’t want to make time.” Sounds harsh but it’s true.

Making time for time

Taking a shortcut – whether in education, business, sports or healthcare – may seem like it will save us time in the short run, but often costs more in the long run. The cost can be loss of money, loss of time, loss of quality of life, or loss of motivation and energy.

However, there are some things that take more time than the shortcut but give us more time later or, at the very least, more quality time. For example, studying hard in school and getting a solid education will cost you time as a student but will likely return much more time in the future because you can earn more by working fewer hours; or it will give you more quality time because you can take longer and more luxurious vacations and possibly retire early. You don’t have to look very far to see people whose lives demonstrate this truth.

Enter Ayurveda

Coming back to my friend at the airport, let us ask what makes more sense: lugging around a heavy oscilloscope everywhere you go or trying to overcome sleep apnea through Ayurvedic treatment? Let’s assume it will take three, four or five weeks at a wellness resort in India; would it not be worth it if you could overcome or dramatically reduce the effects of a lifelong debilitating condition?

Don’t get me wrong. I am not suggesting that Ayurveda or any other form of alternative medicine offers a guaranteed cure for sleep apnea. But your chances are pretty good if you find the right doctor. Openness to the possibility of a cure is the starting point. Simply dismissing Ayurveda because “I don’t have time” is not only stubborn but also utterly shortsighted.

Admittedly, finding the right Ayurveda centre and undergoing the necessary treatment takes time. But that is the price of health. Health takes time. There are no quick fixes. After all, if you have suffered from a particular pain, illness, allergy, disease or discomfort for years, so too the journey to recovery can take years. And it is rarely a one-shot deal but an ongoing process of maintenance.

The body is like a well-built car: it sill needs to be maintained, no matter how well the engineers built it. And just as we change the oil in our car every few months, likewise we need to change our body’s oil every year or so.

Getting an oil change

Ayurveda offers a complete system for changing the body’s oil and lubricating its many moving parts. It’s called “panchakarma” – a time-tested but also time-consuming process of detoxifying, strengthening and balancing the body. It can be done in as little as two weeks, but ideally requires three or four weeks, even longer depending on the seriousness and complexity of the particular disease. The more time you allow for the process, the better the results.

The benefits of panchakarma

​Ayurveda is not just about for treating pain or disease. Rather, it is arguably the world’s oldest living medical system for preventing ill health and ensuring quality of life, even as we age. Panchakarma is a particular process – rather, a series of processes – designed to prolong life and eradicate the underlying causes of ill health in the body.

The specific benefits of panchakarma include:

  • Elimination of toxins
  • Reduction of belly fat and weight
  • Better complexion and glowing skin
  • Improved digestion
  • Lower blood pressure (if you suffer from high blood pressure)
  • Higher energy levels
  • Improved sleep
  • Reduction of stress
  • Reduction or elimination of physical pain
  • Lubrication of the joints and improved mobility
  • Improved regularity of bowel movements

Making time for panchakarma is like getting a good education – it will improve both the quality and availability of time in your life later on. That is why we say, “Make time for time.” But if you don’t have time, remember that that is a choice, not an unchangeable reality. Ayurveda is about making time for time.

Aly Alidina


Ayurooms Founder

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