Nice to know someone who has that level of certainty about what to do. Coming to practicalities ;
- The degree is called BAMS (Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery).
What subjects did you major in in school? In India, any main stream medical / alternative medical degree requires aspirants to major in Zoology and Botany (and most often Physics and Chemistry as well). ie you cannot major in commerce or economics in school and then go on to do a medical degree. At least in the non capitation colleges this is the case (ie the ones where you do not pay a filthy amount of money to the institute and effectively purchase your degree). I don't believe in any case that there are any good capitation colleges which offer a full fledged BAMS as a course, as the recovery of the investment would be too slow for aspiring students.
Are you prepare to put in 5.5 years of hard study to get a Bachelors in Ayurveda medicine.
If yes to both the above, what do you intend to do with your new degree after you complete? I see that you are from South Africa - not sure if Ayurveda is considered equivalent to a mainstream medical degree in your country eg. in the US, it is just a few notches above quackery and the media are quite cutting about the effectiveness of Ayurveda (the ignoramuses!)
If you do want to practice, where will you get your medication from? Many countries ban / limit the import of Ayurvedic medication citing "unacceptable ingredients" e.g mercury, all of which is perfectly safe given the method and degree of curing the ingredients undergo. There is little point in being a qualified BAMS with no means to treat your patients.
If yes again to all the above, yes, Kerala is the best place for you to learn Ayurveda. The best ones are the Govt run colleges. See http://www.keralaeducation.net/Ayurvedic/ for a list of colleges. The College in Trivandrum is probably the best.
Carefully read the website http://www.kerala.gov.in/dept_ayurveda/index.htm . You will see that there is a reservation for foreign students in Goverment colleges. This is the quota which you should look at.
"Seats are reserved for Non Resident Indians and 21 seats are reserved for Foreign students in various Government Ayurveda College for BAMS course."
"Seats for NRI and Foreign students for BAMS courses are available in self financing private Ayurveda College also." I would strongly recommend that you do NOT opt for non Government colleges as the calibre of education and teachers would be suspect
If you go to Kerala, how good are you at learning languages? I think that the courses are taught in Malayalam or if not fully in Malayalam, there would be a fair degree of the vernacular which comes into the lectures. It is a bit of a difficult language to learn - and remember that it has its own script as well.
There are other places in India which do offer a BAMS degree ; e.g the Benares Hindu University, one of the most respected institutions in India for education.
http://admissionsindia.blogspot.com/2008/01/admission-for-bams-b-pharm-ay-ayurveda.html Even here, a basic knowledge of Sanskrit may be required.
Other colleges offering BAMS can be seen here http://www.highereducationinindia.com/courses/bams.php . I cannot comment on any of them and how good their courses are.
Hope this gives you some food for thought...do come back and ask any further questions you may have.
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