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How I Found and Fell In Love With Ayurveda

  • 22 May, 2020
  • Written by Jacqueline Iles

 

Today, I thought I would take you on a little trip down memory lane…🦋

People often ask me how I came to be an Ayurvedic practitioner. Especially when it was relatively unknown and new in Australia 20 plus years ago and most people couldn't even pronounce the word! (Don't worry if you can't too. You are not alone!)

But let's go back even further...Even as a kid I was interested in herbs and would often make herbal tea concoctions out of what I could find in the garden. Sometimes they were delicious and...well, sometimes not!

Skip ahead 10 or so years and I was a very active teenager with netball multiple times a week. Add to that the stress of study and three very barky guard dogs who lived next door and I often had trouble sleeping.

When this happened I would get up and spontaneously do some stretches on my floor. This involved lots of leg stretches and forward bending movements. After a bit of this I would peacefully fall asleep. Only much later did I realise that I was intuitively doing Yoga!! Forward bends are calming to our adrenals and nervous system so I was instinctively calming myself back to sleep!

After the fun and the trials of high school there were two things I knew that I wanted to do...travel and do a massage course. So I did both! (New Zealand was stunning and i would love to go back for a family trip soon!)

After my gap year I started an Arts degree at Flinders Uni studying English, Philosophy and Sociology...interesting, but really... where was that going to lead!! Right?! Whilst at Uni (realisitically studying Tavernology 101! ; ) ) I started my first real job at the vegetarian cafe on Rundle Street called Clearlight. Anyone remember this gem? I learned so so much about good food and how to cook there!

And it was here that, at the tender age of 19, I was introduced to Ayurveda!

At this time I had eczema on my hands and a weird blood disorder that erupted into chikenpox like itchy spots on my skin, then ulcerated and scarred as they healed. There are photos of my spots in the Flinders Medical Center as I was an enigma to them!

Needless to say the cortisone cream I reluctantly used did nothing. Later I discovered that Ayurveda had a name for this type of disorder...Rakta Pitta meaning too much heat in the blood so it erupts out of the skin!! My body was trying to cool and cleanse itself. (Over the years I have helped it to do just this!)

Luckily my employer suggested I see her Ayurvedic Doctor.I did and it changed my life! Everything this Doctor (the dear departed Professor Junius) said made so much sense to me. I knew that I had found my passion.

I was however still a headstrong young woman who was only just learning about good food and loved to drink red wine! I was not ready to completely change my life. Nooo...that took time...years even! But, the seed was planted and starting to sprout.

After a 6 month solo sojourn around Europe I came back home and embarked on my Ayurvedic studies. I was very blessed to have a Natural Medicine College that specialised in Ayurveda right here in my home town of Adelaide. Some things are meant to be!!

My first teachers were Porfessor Junius and Dr. Krishna Kumar. I am forever grateful to them both for the wisdom they shared with me. I was in heaven drinking up all the information. It felt like a coming home to me.
I also started practicing and fell in love with Yoga at this time. You could not get me off the mat! I would cycle across town to get to classes!

After finishing my four years of study I was ready for more travel!

Now India was calling!

And it kept calling. Over the next 4 years I traveled to India three times: for travel, clinic time/more study and Yoga.

You could say it took me a while to settle down!

I, finally, started my business Living Ayurveda in 2000 because I wanted to help others find the understanding and health that I had found. I wanted do my small part in bringing more peace, joy and health to our world. I believe that as we consciously raise our own health and live in tune with the rhythms of nature we help bring balance and healing to our world.

Fast forward 20 years and, like me, my business has grown and evolved.From my beginnings of Practice before kids; to bringing the richness of family life into what I share; to the unexpected (but obvious in hindsight!) depletion and early menopause at the age of forty two (that was such a powerful time and brought me so many valuable gifts), I have a passion for teaching others how to understand their body and connect with their inner wisdom.

My primary focus now is on supporting women in reclaiming their Feminine Vitality so that they can live with more joy, health and ease and share their love and gifts with the world!

I feel so blessed to be doing what I love!

It fills my cup to run my retreats and workshops and work with my clients one on one. I love to see women regain their joie de vie and sleep soundly, digest with ease and nourish themselves more deeply, say yes to self-care and create hormonal balance and health in their lives!

Thanks for being here! 

x Jacq