Talk:/Medical Institutions in ancient india/The Individual and Medicine/Secondary Education

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Secondary Education

 

Then the secondary education was given in high schools or Guru-Kulas where every student was bound to study compulsorily the five subjects, viz, Sabdavidya or grammar and lexicogra�phy, Silpasthanavidya���� or arts, Cikitsavidya or medicine, Hetuvidya or logic and Adhyatmavidya or science of spiritual philosophy. On completing this course, a student was considered fit to select any special branch of study and join the University.

 

An elementary knowledge of medicine was considered necess�ary for all students. They were taught the elementary rules of pres�ervation of health and how to live a full span of life in perfect health by taking care about diet, personal hygiene, actions and character. This shows the importance attached to the medical science, the basic knowledge of which was considered necessary for every individual. No wonder then that the medical science thus became the most popular science of the Aryan civilization.

Observation of these rules and regulation of personal hygiene was moreover preached by the religious code, as purity of heart and mind cannot be generally achieved in an unclean or unsound body. A sound mind presupposes a sound body Hence cleanliness and preservation of sound health became the subject of religious codes and were enforced in every religious ceremony.

 

Dharmasastras are full of injunctions regarding purity, ablutions, diet, regulations, behaviour and mental and physical discipline. The daily routine and seasonal conduct known as Dinacarya-Rtucarya as well as the general lines of hygienic life known as Swasthavitta are given in elaborate detail in the medical treatises, and these no doubt formed part of the universal curriculum of education and ethics. The benefits of cleansing the teeth and the tongue, ear, the eye and the skin, the bath, the inunction, massage, non-suppres�sion of the natural urges, the selection of food and drink, the occasions for avoidance and indulgence in the sexual act, the usefulness and manner of taking certain things like curds, butter-milk, honey and ghee and such other simple but very important facts that make for a healthy life were the common knowledge of all people.