Kaya Kalpa and the Alchemical Tradition in Ayurveda and Siddha Medicine By Ione Linker

 ‘History’ of Kaya Kalpa 

“Ten thousand years ago, a King of India had a problematic, headstrong daughter, who refused to marry any of the eligible princes who were presented to her. In anger and frustration the king decreed that she was to be blindfolded and placed in the castle courtyard in the midst of all her suitors. The man she first touched was to be her husband and their children would continue the Royal line. On that day an elderly holy man wandered into the courtyard to deliver herbs to the King's physician and, by chance, was touched first by the princess. Even though he pled exemption due to his advanced age and holy vows, the King's word was law and they were to marry in three months time. The holy man consulted his teacher about his problem and the teacher instituted an intensive program to rejuvenate and energize. For 90 days the holy man ate a special diet, performed breathing techniques, took ritual herbal baths and was anointed with sacred oils. At the end of that time his hair had turned from gray to black, a new set of teeth had grown into his mouth, and his skin and body were youthful and strong. He married the Princess. They had many children and of course lived happily ever after. This was the beginning of Kaya Kalpa treatment. Vigorously suppressed by the British, it almost was lost. There are now fewer than 30 practitioners in the world.” 1 This “history” of the mysterious ancient rejuvenation process of ‘Kaya Kalpa’ is found on the websites and in the brochures of many of those few present-day practitioners of updated forms of this treatment. ‘Kaya Kalpa’ is most often referred to in passing in Ayurvedic literature as a mystical or legendary process used to revitalize and even immortalize the most spiritually-evolved saints and sages in ancient India, and not described as a realistic or repeatable therapy.

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