Journal of Research in Ayurvedic Sciences

SHORT COMMUNICATION
Year
: 2022  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 21--24

Ayurvedagranthasamuccayah: A digital library of multilingual searchable electronic books of Ayurveda


Vinod Kumar Lavaniya1, Madan Mohan Sharma1, Saketh Ram Thrigulla2, Vatakkathillath Rakesh Narayanan1, Mukesh Bhagwanrao Chincholikar1, Vijayan Ashwathykutty1, Adarsh Kumar1, Narayanam Srikanth1,  
1 Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences, New Delhi, India
2 National Institute of Indian Medical Heritage (NIIMH), Hyderabad, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Vijayan Ashwathykutty
Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences, Jawahar Lal Nehru Bhartiya Chikitsa Avum Homeopathy, Anusandhan Bhavan, No. 61-65, Institutional Area, Opp. “D” Block, Janakpuri, New Delhi 110058
India

Abstract

Ayurvedagranthasamuccayah is a web portal developed by the Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS) wherein all the major classical compendiums of Ayurveda are made available on a web-based platform to enable students, practitioners, academicians, and researchers of Ayurveda to have readily accessible and searchable information. The key features of the portal include easy navigation of books with the help of list-based dropdowns and arrow buttons, various scripts to suit the reading purpose of the reader, search facility for any particular term in all the books simultaneously, and results in Key Word in Context format, search function up to five terms simultaneously, and edutainment tools such as Shalaka pariksha and “Random Sutra” for testing and improving one’s knowledge. To increase awareness of the Āyurvedagranthasamuccayah, this short communication outlines the capabilities and utility of the web-based platform.



How to cite this article:
Lavaniya VK, Sharma MM, Thrigulla SR, Rakesh Narayanan V, Chincholikar MB, Ashwathykutty V, Kumar A, Srikanth N. Ayurvedagranthasamuccayah: A digital library of multilingual searchable electronic books of Ayurveda.J Res Ayurvedic Sci 2022;6:21-24


How to cite this URL:
Lavaniya VK, Sharma MM, Thrigulla SR, Rakesh Narayanan V, Chincholikar MB, Ashwathykutty V, Kumar A, Srikanth N. Ayurvedagranthasamuccayah: A digital library of multilingual searchable electronic books of Ayurveda. J Res Ayurvedic Sci [serial online] 2022 [cited 2022 Dec 9 ];6:21-24
Available from: http://www.jrasccras.com/text.asp?2022/6/1/21/353409


Full Text



 Introduction



The Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS), the apex body for the undertaking, coordinating, formulating, and promoting research on scientific lines in Ayurveda, has undertaken various activities for the promotion of Ayurveda on a global scale from time to time. The Council has launched a web portal named Ayurvedagranthasamuccayah, which has been renamed Ayurvedagranthasamuccayah—APTA Digital Library (APTA being the acronym for Authoritative Principal Textbooks of Ayurveda) [Figure 1]. The core objective of this application is to make all the major classical compendiums of Ayurveda available on a single web-based platform so as to enable students, practitioners, academicians, and researchers of Ayurveda to have readily accessible and searchable information along with varied search options. Numerous features for reading, analysis, and learning of these books have been incorporated into the portal, which will serve as a learning tool for all stakeholders of Ayurveda to study and research the classical books of Ayurveda. The portal has 35 texts which includes major texts of Ayurveda, viz., Brihattrayi (Carakasamhita, Sushrutasamhita, Ashtang Hridaya), Laghutrayi (Madhavanidana, Sharangadhara Samhita, Bhavaprakasha), important Nighantu (lexicons) and Ayurveda texts mentioned under Schedule 1 of D & C Act, 1940 and any other Ayurvedic text-based literary work(s) already published by the CCRAS/RAV/Ministry of Ayush. Many of these books have no transliteration in other languages, and the digital library’s option to select from a variety of scripts, including Phonetic, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Bengali, Gujarati, Gurumukhi, Kannada, Devanagari, and Diacritical, allows users to read them in some of India’s most popular languages. The search features of the portal can be accessed without any Sign Up or Registration. However, Sign Up is required for reading individual books available on the portal. The portal is available at www.ccras.res.in/ccras-ebooks/.{Figure 1}

 Salient Features of the Portal



Navigation

Options have been provided to open books from the thumbnail view or table view with sort functionality. Navigation is made easy through list-based dropdowns and arrow buttons. Whenever the icon or button of a book is clicked, the first context (Adhikarana) of the book is opened. Similarly, on the selection of any section (Sthana), the first context (Adhikarana) of that section (Sthana) will be opened. Further the selection of any chapter (Adhyaya) will open the context (Adhikarana) of that particular chapter (Adhyaya). Provision has been made to navigate to the beginning or end of the chapter directly and to the next or previous context (Adhikarana) through arrow buttons. The books can be viewed with or without the commentaries that are included with the primary text. The portal is multi-device compatible as well as platform-independent, i.e., it can be accessed from different operating systems such as Windows, Linux, or Mac.

 Search Modalities



A simultaneous search option for any particular term in all the books included in the portal is available. Results are displayed in KWIC (Key Word in Context) format with separate results for original verses and commentaries along with the display of result count. Multi-search facility for up to five terms simultaneously is also a feature available in the portal. Both case-sensitive (phonetic) and case-insensitive (normal) search options have been provided to help the users. The search term gets highlighted if it matches the Phonetic English, and Help for choosing the correct phonetic spelling is given in the application. Viewing of search results in the original book and navigation thereon on button click is provided. The “Random Sūtra” feature helps to view random verses from all the books included in the portal with provision to read them from the original book on button click.

 Edutainment Facilities



• The Shalaka Pariksha page for edutainment purpose in a software form is helpful in testing the knowledge of the books, improving one’s knowledge, edutainment, for conducting quizzes and also for preparation of competitive exams. Questions fall under these four categories.▪ Questions to identify the references for a particular context from classical texts in terms of the book, chapter, etc.

▪ Questions to assess the proficiency or knowledge of various commentaries written for the compendia

▪ Questions to identify the missing part of the Sutra (Aphorism)

▪ Questions to identify the successive/previous Sutra (Aphorism) to a particular Sutra (Aphorism)

 Various Use-case Scenario of the Portal



Academics

1. The study resource is useful in classroom teaching in smart classrooms, online courses and tutorials, as training material in various workshops/conferences, and discourses on classical books of Ayurveda. The platform provides different resources for comparative and comprehensive analysis in a study setting.

2. To search for a specific word in all the books available on the portal. This function can be used for various purposes such asa) Review of literature for research purposes including Post Graduate dissertation and Ph.D. thesis works;

b) Drafting research papers of literary research;

c) Studying the frequency of occurrence of specific terms in classical Ayurveda literature including commentaries.

3. It can be used as a valuable tool for conducting tests and quiz programmes on Ayurveda.

4. As a single point learning resource material, this can avoid the need to carry voluminous classical texts of Ayurveda, for the purpose of basic learning, recollection, and advanced research in academics.

Research

To find the various contexts in which a term is used: This is the foremost utility of the search function. This will provide a broad picture of the contexts in which a particular term/word has been used in the classical literature. For example, a search for the term Udaka will give a comprehensive perspective on the term water is used in the Ayurveda classics. These search results can further be refined collating the search results of their synonyms too.

To find out the different meanings of a particular term used in classical Ayurveda books: Using the search function, the search results fetched can be analyzed for various connotations, the term holds other than its primary meaning. For example, the search for the word "Rasa” offers various contexts/meanings in which it is used in Ayurveda classics.

To find out the references for the research papers and other publications as outcomes of various research activities.

For data synthesis and further data categorization in research works on herbs, formulations, symptomatology, and treatment modalities.

In drug research, the portal will help to ascertain whether a particular drug is mentioned in the classical literature of Ayurveda when all the books mentioned under Schedule 1 of Drugs and Cosmetics Act 1940 will be uploaded in the portal in its updated versions.

Clinical practice

For identification of formulations that can be used in multiple disease conditions: Using the multiple-term search function (up to five terms), by entering names of multiple disease conditions, users can find out various formulations which have indications for the different disease conditions searched. This helps in the selecting appropriate formulations with classical indications for the medical conditions in consideration. For example, search for Prameha (diabetes mellitus) and Kushtha (various skin diseases) will give results such as Madhvasava, Madhukasava, Manduravataka, Gandiradyarishta, Varahakanda, and Bhallatkavidhana. A similar search for Kushtha (various skin diseases) and Pandu (pallor/anemia) will give results such as Siddharthaka Snana, Navayasachurna, etc., and a search for Pandu (pallor/anemia) and Hridroga (diseases of heart) will give results such as Dhatryarishta, Phalarishta, etc.

For choosing the appropriate dosage forms: The desired dosage form along with the drugs needed may be entered for search to find out the appropriate formulation.

To know whether two or more Dravya (substances) are used together in various formulations: Users can input various combinations of Dravya (substances) using the multi-search function to see the number of results appearing to ascertain whether the Dravyas (substances) are used in that combination frequently or not. For example, a search for Haritaki and Saindhava will give results like Haritakyadi Churna, Rasnadi Kalka, Vadavanala churna, etc.

For identification/locating a Dravya (substance) with a specific Rasa (taste)/Guna (property)/Virya (potency) etc.: In Sthaulya Chikitsa (obesity treatment), as per the treatment principle, the medicine should ideally be Guru and Aptarpana (hard to digest and depleting in nature). Here, the user can use the multi-term search function (up to five terms) to search for the words Guru (hard to digest) and Apatarpana (depleting in nature) or Guru (hard to digest) and Langhana (depleting in nature) or Guru (hard to digest) and Tikta (bitter taste) (as Tikta dravyas are usually Langhana in action). The search for the terms Guru (hard to digest) and Tikta (bitter taste) will yield results such as Shatavari, Atasi, etc. A similar search done for Guru (hard to digest), Tikta (bitter taste), and Ushna (hotness) will offer results like Guduci. The same function can be used to find Dravya (substance) with a specific pharmacological action with different pharmacological attributes, e.g., Medhya Dravya (intellect promoter) of various Rasa (taste) (Madhura Medhya, Tikta Medhya, etc.).

To identify the disease pattern: When a patient presents with multiple symptoms, the symptomatology can be analyzed using the multi-search option for identifying the probable disease patterns provisionally.

Even though, the texts of Ayurveda are widely available in PDF format, none of them can be used for specific word search, and in this regard this portal offers itself as a valuable tool in academics, research, and clinical practice. On the other hand, the digital library, does not allow users to copy its content.

 Limitations of the Portal



Phonetic spellings of Sanskrit words have to be entered for getting precise search results, even though case-insensitive search and options for Devanagari input of search terms are also provided in the search bar in the footer of the web portal. Phonetic help has also been provided on the search page for the ease of the user. Many classical texts and books mentioned under Schedule 1 of Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 are yet to be incorporated and will be uploaded to the portal in its updated versions.

 Conclusion



In this era of digitalization, the portal provides unique features for reading and searching of classical Ayurveda literature. Apart from making the books available at a click away, it also provides edutainment options and advanced search options that can be of immense help in literature search and research, and clinical practice in Ayurveda.

Acknowledgment

The authors acknowledge Prof. K. S. Dhiman, Former Director-General for his valuable guidance and IT professionals, Sanskrit experts, and data entry operators involved in the project for their dedicated work.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

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