Volume 4 (2) 2006


Ayurveda And Modern Psychiatry In The 21ST Century: A Health-Oriented Synthesis Of Seeming Contrasts
Frank John Ninivaggi, M. D.
Yale New Haven, CT
Abstract: American culture in the 21st Century consists of a palette of ideologies and behaviors, some of which are compatible and some of which are contrasting. One leading cultural paradigm in Western medicine places science and scientific technology in high esteem. Channeling consciousness into what is perceived to be a rational explanation of reality using evidence-based studies is its leading value, if not singular pursuit. It is the principal axiom of modern science and Western medicine. Modern psychiatry, in general, also espouses this. The roots of psychiatry, however, emerged in a more personalized, psychodynamic context. The study of the mind arose from an introspectively articulated and shared examination of how both loving and destructive impulses surface in experience and are expressed in behavior. Its technique of treatment was psychotherapy. This paper will explore modern psychiatry, its classification, and treatment strategies for disordered mental and emotional states with particular attention to Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, and illicit Substance Use. It will complement these views with some aspects of the theory and practice of Ayurveda. A multicultural and balanced approach to diagnosis and treatment is advanced.


Neuroimmune Interactions: A Bidirectional Flow That Leads To Health And Disease
Robert E. Cone
Department of Immunology, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Connecticut
Abstract: The Vedic philosophy deals with harmony and balance between the mind and the body as well as interactions with nature. This ancient approach to health and well-being is being more and more appreciated in part as we understand the intimate relationship between the immune system, our major defense mechanism and the nervous system. Like other organ systems, the immune system is dependent on the central nervous system (CNS) and the endocrine system in its role for effective defense against foreign and domestic invaders.