Siddha system of medicine is a form of a traditional medicine system which originated down south. Siddha means achievement, which was attained by Siddhars. They were saints who were mystics and are credited for developing and forwarding the system of Siddha medicine. It is believed that there were eighteen Siddhars in total, who are also referred to as the enlightened souls. The Siddha literature is also written in Tamil and is mainly practiced in Tamil speaking regions of the country and abroad.
The Siddha System is largely therapeutic in nature and its origin can be
traced back to the birth of human race on the planet. According to
mythological and historical beliefs, the initial home of mankind was
located in the temperate and fertile regions of the East. The human race
started its culture and career from here. India for that matter of fact
can also be regarded as one of the first countries in the world, from
where the mankind started its journey of evolution.
Moreover, this wondrous land was primarily inhabited by the Dravidians
of whom the Tamilians were the most prominent. They were also accredited
for being one of the most developed civilizations which ever dwelled
upon this planet. However, even at that point of time a dominant
segregation was visible between the North and the South regions of
India. For instance, Sanskrit presided over North while Dravidian
language was predominant in South. This holds true for the science of
medicine as well.
Like Ayurveda was prevalent in the north, Siddha was flourishing in the
south. Owing to its antiquity, the origin of this system is attributed
to the Creator himself. As per traditional tales, it is deemed that Lord
Shiva unfolded the knowledge about Siddha to his divine consort Goddess
Parvati. She in turn passed it onto Nandi Dev, who eventually handed it
to the Siddhars. Nevertheless, Saint Agastiyar is accredited for
founding the Siddha system of medicine. His works on medicine and
surgery, still serve as standards among Siddha medical practitioners.