By Dr Raghuram Y. S. MD (Ay) & Dr Manasa, B. A. M. S
Tridoshas – vata, pitta and kapha also participate in formation of some organs. Doshas are present in embryo right from moment of conception. They come from parents in form of inheritance and take part in formation of constitution of an individual.
Temperament of a person depends on predominance of a doshas in his body at time of conception. This will remain throughout his life. Thus, doshas too take part in formation of certain organs, though they are basically functional components.
Similarly, tissues are also formed and developed at different stages during fetal life, so are organs.
Read –Pratyangas: The minor organs, Definition, Number
Some organs are formed by tissues and some by combination of doshas with tissues.
Formation of organs
Formation of organs and dosha involvement in their formation
Organs are being formed in fetus, certain tissues and doshas take part in their formation. Below mentioned are some organs of body which are formed due to involvement of doshas.
Read – Mesentery – Newly Discovered Organ, Explained 3000 Years Ago in Ayurveda
Note: organs formed by only tissues i. e. without involvement of doshas has not been touched upon in this article because discussion becomes out of context.
Read – Koshta – Large anatomical Body Cavities
Tongue – formed from essence of kapha, blood and muscle
Heart – formed from combination of essence of blood and kapha
Liver and Spleen – formed by interaction of samana vata and blood tissue. Due to influence of samana vata, heat in body gets inflated. This increased heat of body metabolises blood tissue and thus liver and spleen are formed.
Gall Bladder – formed by combination of blood and vata.
Testes – formed by combination of essence of muscle, kapha, blood and fat tissue.
Visceral organs – formed by expansion of muscle tissue by vata.
Read – Ashaya – Meaning, Types, Location, Utility
Intestines, anus, and rectum, urinary bladder – essence part of blood and kapha are metabolized by pitta. Later, vata enters this material and helps in formation of intestines, anus, rectum and urinary bladder.
Channels of body – Vata along with pitta passes through flesh and by virtue of its piercing and separating nature helps in formation of channels and ducts of different sizes and shapes.
Read –Srotas: Body Channels and Duct systems – Easy Explanation
Muscles – same vata and pitta, as explained in channels of body above, enter flesh and divide it into several fragments forming many muscles of body.
External apertures – nine external apertures i. e. oral cavity, nostrils, external auditory meatus, eyes, anus and external urethral opening are formed by influence of local vata.
White portion of eye – formed by kapha.
Anatomical Classification Of Body On Basis Of Doshas
The human body can be anatomically classified into three zones based on location of 3 doshas.
Between head and toes, kapha, pitta and vata are located from top to bottom of body in that order.
Kapha is located in upper portion of body. Pitta is located in middle part of body. Vata is located in lower part of body.
Thus, body is anatomically divided into an upper, middle and lower portion, 1/3 portion each, based on location of kapha, pitta and vata respectively.
Read –The Easiest Way To Understand Doshas
Landmarks for classifying body into three segments based on dosha locations
In Ayurveda, heart and navel are taken as landmarks with help of which body is divided into 3 portions based on allocation of places for doshas. This forms clue for one of earliest explanations of anatomical surface markings as found in Ayurvedic treatises.
Read –Types Of Doshas And Their Functions
Vagbhata, tells –
- pitta is located between heart and navel,
- kapha is located above heart i. e. above region of pitta
- vata is located below navel i. e. below region of pitta
In this context, ‘heart’ means lower border and surface of heart, portion of heart which rests on diaphragm forming base of heart. Diaphragm just below cardiac orifice of esophagus through which food pipe opens into stomach also considered for term ‘heart’. This means to tell that heart, should not be considered as an organ. We should consider ‘heart’ as ‘near to heart’.
Read –Understanding Digestion Process From An Ayurveda View
The term ‘navel’ should be taken as ‘navel pit’ found at center of abdomen. Umbilicus is said to be chief site for pitta. It is just behind navel that intestines, mainly duodenum and stomach, seat of digestive activities are located. Digestion of food is carried over by pitta in a balanced state. Fire which can digest and process food is said to be located in our physical body in form of pitta.
The heart and navel are two anatomical landmarks taking help of which predominant zones occupied by doshas have been defined and explained.
Read –Panchamahabhuta: Application, Areas of Utility in Ayurveda treatment
1. Upper zone of body, kapha zone
The portion of body located above region of heart belongs to kapha. This can also be considered as water zone because kapha is predominantly made up of water element.
This zone comprises of important organs like brain, heart and lungs. Functions of these organs need to be precisely good as they govern and command all other activities of body. Heart and brain are also vital organs.
Read –Kapha Dosha Dominant Places in Our Body
Since these organs work uninterruptedly, they need buffers which can absorb extra shocks from these organs as they function without stop. This buffer and protection is provided by kapha. Kapha also supports sense organs and enable proper reception of sensory information and perception of same.
Three major types of kapha among five are located in this zone, tarpaka kapha which nourishes brain and sense organs, bodhaka kapha located in tongue and avalambaka kapha which supports heart and lungs, being located in chest.
Read –Kapha test – How To Know About Kapha Imbalance In Your Body
Avalambaka kapha governs activities of other kapha subtypes. Thus, seat of avalambaka kapha i. e. chest is said to be control station of kapha.
The other two subtypes of kapha i. e. kledaka kapha and shleshaka kapha are located in stomach and bony joints respectively. This shows that kapha is also present out of its territory too, everywhere in body.
The organs in kapha zone are extremely important and vital organs. As already said they function without taking a pause. Therefore these organs need support and buffer more than other organs in body.
Kapha protects this zone from hyperactivity of pitta and vata, if it happens.
At same time this kapha zone also has presence of prana vayu, a subtype of vata and sadhaka pitta, a subtype of pitta both located in head and takes control of much of activities of brain and sense organs. Similarly alochaka pitta is located in eyes and udana vata in chest.
2. Middle zone of body, pitta zone
The portion of body located below region of heart and above region of umbilicus belongs to pitta. This zone can also be considered as fire zone because pitta is predominantly made up of fire element.
This zone comprises predominantly of digestive apparatus including stomach, small intestine, liver, gall bladder, spleen and pancreas. Liver and spleen are also roots of channels which carry blood i. e. hemopoetic organs. Health of these organs needs to be good if digestive activities are to be carried out in a smooth way. This zone is governed by pitta.
Read – Pitta Dosha Dominance In Different Body Parts – 8 Things To Know
The stomach and small intestine, duodenum to be precise, is chief site of pitta among its subtypes. These organs also form control station of pitta. This means to tell that digestive pachaka pitta located here would control all other pittas in body. Ranjaka pitta, pitta subtype which imparts color to lymph and converting it into blood is located in pitta zone itself, in liver to be precise.
While sadhaka and alochaka pittas are located in kapha zone, bhrajaka pitta is located in skin. This shows that in spite of pitta being allotted a zone, it is also present elsewhere and everywhere in body.
Kledaka kapha and samana vayu located in stomach and intestines help digestive pitta in digestion. They work in coordination and help in proper digestion, segregation, absorption and utilization of food and nutrients.
3. Lower zone of body, vata zone
The portion of body located below level of navel landmark belongs to vata. This can also be considered as air zone because kapha is predominantly made up of water element.
This zone comprises of important organs like colon, urinary bladder, male and genital organs. Main functions happening in this zone are absorption of water and electrolytes, excretion of feces and urine, and reproduction. All these activities are guided and supported by vata located predominantly in this zone of body.
Read – Vata Dosha Dominance In Different Body Parts – How it affects health?
One of chief type of vata i. e. apana vata is located in this zone, in colon and controls above mentioned functions.
Colon is said to be chief governing site of all subtypes of vata. Vata located here controls activities of all subtypes of vata. Thus, colon is control station of all vata activities.
While samana vata is located in pitta zone, prana vata and udana vata in pitta zone, last subtype of vata i. e. vyana vata is all pervading. This shows that vata, like pitta and kapha is located all over body, but predominantly located in lower zone.