Beejopaghata: Sperm Damage And Azoospermia In Ayurveda

Article by Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay)
We are proud to be in a generation of scientific and technological advancements, though we are able to get our jobs done in fractions of seconds with the help of the most sophisticated gadgets, in spite of we trying to find a scope of life on other planets, there are millions of people striving to manufacture a child for themselves!! 

Infertility has been a curse on the mankind and it has been proportionally increasing with evolution!!
Thanks to the modern day foods and undisciplined lifestyle, which are the causes of many diseases including infertility!!

Among many causes of infertility, the deterioration of quality and quantity of semen and the sperms consisting in them are the key issues.

There may be many causes which lead to the structural and functional damage of the sperms. The destruction of sperms is one of the main causes for infertility.

This concept was first explained comprehensively in Ayurveda, the most ancient medical system known to the mankind. The destruction of sperms was named as Beejophaghata or ‘Sperm damage’ or ‘Sperm injury’.


Beeja=Sperm, Upaghata=Injury or damage

बीजं यस्माद् व्यवाये तु हर्ष योनिः समुत्थितम्।
शुक्रं पौरुषं इति उक्तं तस्मात् वक्ष्यामि तत् शृणु॥(च.चि.३०/१३३)
बीजं यस्माद् इति आदि। यस्माद् बीजभूतं गर्भस्य शुक्रं तस्माद् वक्ष्यामि।
व्यवायेषु हर्ष एव योनिः कारणं तस्मात् उत्थितं। पौरुषं इति पुरुष चिह्नं, शुक्रेण एव तस्माद् वक्ष्यामि।(चक्रपाणि)

Chakrapani tells about beeja as quoted by Charaka –
Charaka tells – ‘I will now explain about the shukra (semen or reproductive fluid of male) which contains the beeja (active sperms) responsible for formation of garbha (foetus, embryo)’

व्यवायेषु हर्ष एव योनिः कारणं तस्मात् उत्थितं।
The Harsha or sexual desire or drive or libido is the only reason for getting indulged in coitus and this harsha is manifested by ‘Shukra having beeja capable of producing garbha’

This means to tell that the shukra is of 2 types –
Shukra having Beeja and
Shukra not having beeja
Shukra devoid of beeja doesn’t produce harsha or garbha

Here shukra clearly points towards semen
Beeja points towards sperms

If you have semen without sperms (oligospermia, less sperms then normal in the semen or azoospermia, absence of sperms in the semen), it cannot produce garbha

पौरुषं इति पुरुष चिह्नं, शुक्रेण एव तस्माद्
Paurusha – Sign of being a Purusha – is fulfilled by the presence of Shukra
This means to tell that ‘One who has shukra is called Purusha’

But Shukra which has beeja can produce garbha and harsha

Therefore –
Beejopaghata = Damage to sperms
Shukra Sankshaya = Reduced quantity of Semen (anatomical, if garbha dharana is not considered and only quantity is considered) or semen devoid of sperms (if garbha dharana is considered)
Thus, Ayurveda was the first science to identify the role of beeja or sperms in production of garbha (foetus, embryo) and harsha (sexual exhilaration).
Beejopaghata and Shukra Sankshaya are the main causes of infertility.


Causes for Beejopaghata and Shukra Sankshaya

  • Ahita Ahara – Bad food choices
  • Ahita Vihara – Undisciplined lifestyle
  • Dushta Shukra – Semen contaminated by morbid doshas
  • Abhighata – Trauma to the testicles
  • Beejabhaga dushti – If the child is born from the sperm of a father whose beeja-bhaga (sperm structure or chromosome) had been damaged or was not of good quality, the child genetically will have beejopaghata and / or shukra sankshaya
  • Viruddha ahara – mutually incompatible foods
  • Dhatupaka – autoimmune conditions leading to testicular and spermatic failure
  • Anashana – malnutrition, fasting (in excess)
  • Manopaghata – Psychological disorders etc

Just Before Finish –
Having a child of their own is everyone’s dream, instinct of life. It is the best and priceless treasure one can get in his life, because having a child is seeding the hope for begetting the next generation and keeping the race intact and going.

‘Aputrasya Gatim Nasti’ is a famous Sanskrit verse which tells that ‘The life of a childless man is worthless’. With infertility haunting and traumatizing the mankind, it also takes a big responsibility on our part to keep away the causes which might set in the beejopaghata and shukra sankshaya. Many causes are within our hold. By keeping away the causes we would have ensured ourselves a blessed and blissful sexual life and a surety of having a child, a beautiful little soul playing in the paradise of our life!!
Click to Consult Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ayu)

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