(BOOK REVIEW) SATTVA: THE AYURVEDIC WAY TO LIVE WELL BY EMINE & PAUL RUSHTON
Sattva: The Ayurvedic Way to Live Well by Emine and Paul Rushton (published by Hay House UK Ltd, 2019) is a profound book, bursting with the potential to help you change your life, step by baby-step...
From its blue and gold outer cover, to the ancient wisdom contained within its pages, it is a truly special work.
And, once read, it infuses you with the inspiration to live a slower, simpler, and more nourishing and sattvic lifestyle.
In Sanskrit, 'sattva' means 'consciousness'.
It is defined in the Introduction as:
'The quality of goodness - love, light and a life lived well;
Rich in peace, selflessness, serenity, enlightenment, gentleness and harmony.'
A husband and wife team, the authors are both seasoned writers with a fluid and lyrical style.
They have chosen to live and breathe a lifestyle that is both rich in simplicity and rooted deeply in the natural world around them.
Celebrating living in tune with, and tuned into, the earth's seasons - as well as our own- their words invite the reader to simply stop, slow, soften, and breathe... to smell the roses and listen to the birdsong...
The rhythm, or 'rta', of the Rushtons' writing is deeply soothing to read.
Curling up with this book is the literary equivalent of being wrapped up in a warm blanket, handed a hot mug of cacao, and snuggling down to listen to tales around a flickering campfire.
And, as we read, their words guide us, like a gentle, steering hand at our back, into serenity and awareness of the oneness of all life.
Sattva is a book that will realign your spirit, welcoming you back into wholeness with who you truly are - mind, body and soul - and revealing to you the ties that bind us with each other, and with mother nature.
Each chapter of the book create a rounded and full-bodied definition of sattva as a guiding and harmonising principle for life.
Emine and Paul, together, delve into the concepts of unity, harmony, purity, vitality, clarity, gentleness and serenity, exploring the part that sattva plays within the ancient Indian 'science of life' that is ayurveda.
We are welcomed to make life choices that will bring us back to our self.
The back of the book tells us that Sattva offers the reader:
'a complete lifestyle prescription for balance and peace in our hectic Western world'.
And, in our busy lives, where we forever burn the candle at both ends, this 'prescription' is a good one. It is not a rigid prescription, with many rules to break. But, rather, gentle and personalised suggestions for our individual 'dosha', or constitution. The reader is invited to take from it what most deeply resonates with us.
We are guided through the three main doshas - Vata, Pitta and Kapha - which is, along with the rest of this book, utterly fascinating. I discovered that I am Vata - a dosha that is typically characterised by the elements of ether (space) and air.
Vata types are described as creative, imaginative, and deeply interested in healing. It even mentions that this dosha type can often need to wrap up warm as they often feel the cold. Very true, if my collection of snuggly thermal vests and fluffy jumpers is anything to go by!
I took the quick, easy and free dosha questionnaire at: https://thisconsciouslife.co/discover-your-dosha/. It takes 3 minutes, is astonishingly accurate, and the results completely chimed with what I intuitively already knew about myself! Try it for yourself and see...
There is much to learn from this gentle book, and from the authors themselves who live and breathe the conscious and ayurvedic lifestyle they advocate, and you will find plenty more food for thought, too, on their online journal and podcast, This Conscious Life.
Less a book about 'doing', and more about 'being', Sattva will remind you just how precious and unique you truly are, inextricable as we all are from the whole, from each other, and from nature.
I wholeheartedly recommend Sattva for anyone who feels like they are relentlessly racing, rushing and forgetting to rest and nurture themselves.
Reading Sattva slowly, savouring every word and sip of wisdom, will anchor you into the present moment, inspiring you to prioritise wellness in your life, and to live harmoniously, holistically and, always, in the here and now...
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