Vata Dosha – Mastermind Behind All Body And Mind Activities

By Dr Raghuram Y. S. MD (Ay) & Dr Manasa, B. A. M. S

Vata, Pitta and Kapha popularly known as tridoshas are chief functional components of body. Equilibrium of these doshas is very essential for maintenance of all activities in body.


When these doshas are balanced, all activities related to body, mind and senses occur smoothly. With this, one can enjoy a status of perfect health and immunity. On other hand, when these doshas are imbalanced, they cause various diseases.
Read – Diet And Lifestyle Advice For Vata Dosha Body Type

Even among these three forces of body, vata Dosha is considered as master of body orchestra. It controls all functions including those of pitta and kapha.

Supreme Authority

Supreme authority of Vata over body and mind

If body is a machine, vata Dosh is considered to be a formulation which runs this machine in a smooth way. It can be considered as engine which runs all functions of body and mind.

Sanskrit verse

Vat Dosh is said to be ‘all powerful’ because of below mentioned special features it carries (Ref – Ashtanga Hrudaya Shareera Sthana. 3/84) –

  • It is highly authoritative over all activities, monitors and runs almost all body functions
  • It is quick acting
  • It is very strong
  • It has capacity to vitiate other doshas, tissues and excreta of body creating a base for many diseases to manifest
  • It is only independent body element and controls everything
  • Among all diseases caused in body, diseases caused by vitiated vata are highest in number

Read – Understand Vata Dosha By Its Functions


Sharngdhara gives a benchmark statement about authority of vata and tells-

 ‘All pitta, kapha, excreta and tissues of body are lame. They get carried away to places in body wherever they are pushed, pulled or propelled by action and force of vata. ’

The author also gives a simily and tells that elements in body are carried from one part of body to other just like clouds are moved by winds to different places. Here wind can be compared to vata and other elements can be compared to clouds.
Read –Symptoms Of Vata Dosha Increase And Imbalance – Vata Vruddhi Lakshana

Charaka adds to this and tells (Ref – Charaka Siddhi Sthana1/38) –

 ‘No other dosha other than vata is responsible for causation of all diseases manifesting in body. Those diseases may be ones manifested in tissues, visceral organs, vital organs, upper or lower parts of body and in entire body. ’

Another reference from Charaka Chikitsa (Ref – Charaka Chikitsa Sthana28/59) also qualifies vata as an authoritative force in body.

Vata, pitta and kapha move in all channels of body. Due to its minuteness and subtle nature, vata is all pervading. It also provokes and aggravates pitta and kapha. Vitiated vata displaces pitta and kapha, throws them in abnormal pathways and different parts of body causing many diseases. Vitiated vata also occupies and blocks all channels of body and depletes all tissues of body.

The five subtypes of vata, when get vitiated, move in abnormal directions. While traveling haphazardly in this manner, these 5 types of vata cause many diseases pertaining to their seats and functions. They cause many diseases when they get vitiated in their respective seats also. By causing various diseases they trouble body extensively. When all these 5 subtypes of vata get aggravated at a time they can also pose threat to life.
Read –Vata Dosha – Qualities, Functions, Imbalance – Charaka Sutrasthana 12


Functions of balanced and vitiated vata which substantiates authority of vata in body (Ref – Cha. Su. 12/7)

  • Vata forms key to operate this machine called human body and also runs all its mechanism.
  • Vata is of five types i. e. prana, apana, vyana, samana and udana are scattered all through body. Each type of vata is located in different sites of body and exerts its predominant authority and controls functions of that sites.
  • It is initiator of all psychosomatic activities in body.
  • It is controller and activator of mind. Thus it controls all mind activities.
  • It is said to be employer of sense organs. Vata controls all sensory perceptions and enables one to perceive precise knowledge of related sense objects.
  • It is moderator of all sense objects.
  • It organises all tissues of body.
  • It is chief coordinator of different parts of body. Thus it integrates various parts of body and aligns their functions. Due to activity of vata, entire body works as a single unit and all functions take place normally in a synchronised way.
  • It is organizer of phonation.
  • It is basis for touch and sound.
  • It is basis for sense organs of hearing and touch.
  • It is root for pleasure and enthusiasm.
  • It stimulates digestive power and enables proper digestion of food.
  • It dries up excessively secreting doshas.
  • It is responsible for elimination of excretory products at right time and right proportions. Thus it helps keeping body clean, sterile and healthy.
  • It forms spaces and cavities required for accommodation of all big and small channels of body.
  • It forms different shapes and curves that are required for all organs of embryo.

Thus, vata is representation of life. These qualities are most important for vata which signifies its greatness in body system.
Read – How To Balance Vata Dosha? Line Of Treatment And Reasoning

At same time, when this vata is out of balance and is vitiated, it is sure to play mischief and create untoward events in body. These destructive activities of vitiated vata lead to manifestation of many diseases and disturbing conditions. They are –

  • Vitiated and out of balance vata causes many types of diseases
  • It destroys strength, color and pleasure, shortens longevity
  • It perturbs mind
  • It affects all sense organs in a bad way and destroys power of perception by these organs
  • It destroys embryo, causes abortion, causes fetal abnormalities
  • It causes fear, grief, delusion, hallucination, confusion, ignorance, depression, delirium and destroys life

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