June 27, 2019
Living secluded for 121 days in the dark specially built trigarbha kuti or three-chambered building and having just specially made rasayana and a glass of milk, Kedar (69), a transcendental meditation (TM) guru stepped out young and hearty just a few days ago.
Kedar, whose real name is Will Fox and is from Texas in the US and has been teaching TM in Uttarkashi for the last 23 years, went into the trigarbha griha on February as part of the rarest of rare Ayurvedic kayakalpa chikatsa or rasayana treatment to counter ageing and become young.
It was 121 days of solitary confinement at the kuti of the Padinharkara Ayurveda Hospital and Research Centre run by the Padinharkara Charitable Trust at Ottappalam in Palakkad district.
It was a rare sight when he stepped out, jet black hair and smooth skin, which was proof of the strength of the ayurveda rejuvenation treatment. Dr P Sethumadhavan, who heads the trust says the Kutipraveshika is all about arresting the symptoms of that lead to old age and working towards retaining youthfulness.
“It’s a process of spiritual tapas. I feel so energised. It’s a purifying process and organising the whole physiology. The whole impact on my health and my body can be known only by my three medical problems – a hearing one which seems to have been resolved, spondylitis where there has been improvement and skin ailment which is showing a very great improvement,” said Kedar.
He told The Covai Post: “My skin and nail conditions have improved. Months spent in the kuti have been an opportunity to strengthen my psychology and release large amounts of accumulated psychological load. I feel more free, more self-reliant, at peace and with greater clarity in my thinking.”
He is the fifth person to go into the kuti at Ottappalam and has stayed the longest there. It is literally going back into the womb was how the first, 90-year-old ascetic Yugal Saran Maharaj from Rajasthan, had described way back in 2011. He was in the team that last performed such a treatment in the 1930s for social reformer Madan Mohan Malavyia.
There were interesting incidents as part of the treatment. The ascetic Maharaj had `amorous’ feelings that he had experienced when he was a youth and asked the doctor for medicines to control it. In another case, a 69-year-old woman (the third case) who stayed in the kuti for 90 days sent a note for sanitary napkins mid-way as her periods had restarted.
A relaxed and satisfied Dr Sethumadhavan told The Covai Post that Kutipraveshika Rasayana Prayogam, the seventh of the eight-part science of Ayurveda, is gerachikitsa (similar to what is geriatrics) or rasayana treatment for retaining youthfulness or avoiding illnesses that come with ageing.
There is a lot of preparation for this. The patient identified for this needs mental strength to stay for long in solitude having just a glass of milk and the rasayana. When a student at the medical college, Dr Sethumadhavan was told by his professor that Kutipraveshika was something of the past and did not exist now. Quick was his response, “If it does not exist now, why teach it?” His teacher asked him to sit down. But the stubborn student then declared he would practise this. And it took him years to finally make it in 2011 and this time make the patient stayed for 121 days.
Making the medicine is no easy job as one has to strictly go by the ancient texts. Even the milk and the ghee for preparing this come from indigenous cow that is fed on this rasayana for months prior to the treatment.
Construction of the kuti was equally tough, as he had to refer to several ancient texts. But there are reasons for Dr Sethumadhavan and his team supported by Dr Akhil to cheer. It is not simply just growing young. It is about bringing back youthfulness so that one can lead a responsible and meaningful life and be of value to society. This also explains why not many can get selected for this `magic’ treatment.