Sanskrit Gurukul

Ashtanga Hridayam, Chapter-1 (Desire for long life), Sutrasthana, BAMS 1st year, Ayurveda.

In this post we will learn about the remaining verses of chapter 1, desire for long life, of Ashtanga Hridayam, Sutrasthana under Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery, 1st year.

Dravya bhedah-(type of food substances)

Shamana – Food that brings down the increased Dosha to normalcy

Kopana – Food that increases the lowered Dosha to normalcy 

Swasthahita – Food that maintains the normalcy of Tridosha and health.

Types of Potency (Veerya)

  1. Ushna veerya (Hot potency) -Some food items are hot in nature. For example pepper 
  2. Sheeta veerya (cold potency) – Some food items are cold in nature. For example milk.

These are the two types of potencies. Generally, substances that have Astringent, bitter and sweet tastes are coolant in nature and Sour, salt and pungent tastes are hot in nature.


Vipaka refers to conversion of taste after the initial phase of digestion.

  1. Madhura Vipaka (sweet) – Generally, Sweet and salt tastes undergo this Vipaka.
  2. Amla Vipaka (Sour) – Sour taste undergoes this Vipaka
  3. Katu Vipaka – rest of the tastes – Bitter, astringent and pungent tastes undergo this Vipaka.

Twenty types of qualities in Ayurveda

In total 41 gunas (qualities) have been enumerated in Ayurveda as under:

  1. Artha(5) (indriyartha): Objects Of Sense Organs [sabda (sound), sparsa (touch), rupa (vision), rasa (taste) and gandha (smell)]
  2. Gurvadi (20) : Dravyaguna or dwandwa guna
  3. Atmagunas(6): Buddhi (intellect), sukha (happiness), duhkha (misery), iccha (desire), (hatred) and prayatna (efforts).
  4. Paradiguna (10): Para (predominence), apara (subordination), yukti (propriety) sankhya (number), samyoga (combination), vibhaga (division), prthaktwa (separation), parimana (measurement), sarhskara (transformation) and abhyasa (repetition)

Gurvadi Guna in Ayurveda:

Guru (heavy), manda (slow), hima (cold), Snigdha (unctuous), slaksna (smooth), Sandra (solid), mrdu (soft), sthira (stable), suksma (minute, subtle), and vishada (non-slimy )-these ten along with their respective opposites-are the twenty gunas (qualities* properties of substances).

Cause of disease and health in Ayurveda

The present verse represents an exposition of causative factors responsible for the production of almost all diseases pertaining to the body and mind.

The 3-fold causes are:

of time (kala), objects of the sense organs (indriyarthas) and the activities of the body, mind and speech (karma), whereas the proper utilisation (samyak yoga) of the above factors results in a healthy state.

Ayurveda is based on triskandhas viz.,

  1. Hetu skandha (causative factors/etiology)
  2. Linga skandha (signs and symptoms/symptomatology)
  3. Aushadha skandha (drugs/treatment/knowledge of therapeutics).

Hetu skandha: 

  1. Kala (time): Parinama
  2. Artha: Asatmyendriyartha samyoga
  3. Karma: Prajnaparadha.
Hetu skandhaLinga skandhaAusadha skandha
Asatmendrivartha samvoga:
Hinayoga, mithyayoga, atiyoga.
Hinayoga, mithyayoga, atiyoga.
Jara (aging), ksut (hunger), pipasa (thirst).

Purvarupa, rupa, upasaya, anupasaya, samprapti.Dosa samana, kopana, swasta-hita.

Due to the above causative factors doshas gets vitiated and various signs and symptoms will be formed as shown in linga skandha. By selecting the appropriate drugs from ausadha skandha, which brings the vitiated doshas to normalcy, is one of the aims and objectives of Ayurveda.

Kala (Time):

Hinayoga : Heat in summer, cold in winter is decreased than the normal condition. 

Mithyayoga : Cold in summer, and heat in winter.

Atiyoga : More heat in summer and more cold in winter than the normal climaticcondition.

Artha/Indriyartha (Objects of sense organs):

Karma (Activities of body, mind and speech):

Notes:-Less, more or wrong unison of time, senses and functions is the reason for disease and the right unison of these three factors is the reason for health. This will be described in detail in chapter 12.

Roga (disease) in Ayurveda

Roga (disease) is (the effect of) disequilibrium of the Doshas while health is ( the result of) the equilibrium of the Doshas. 

Notes :—Each of the Doshas  possessing its specific quantity, qualities and functions is known as its samya (equilibrium) whereas increase (vrddhi) and decrease (ksaya) in its quantity, one or more of its qualities and functions are known as its vaisamya (disequilibrium).

Types of disease:

Nija roga – Disease caused due to imbalance in internal factors. For example, eating excessive hot substances, leading to gastritis.

Agantu Roga – Disease caused due to external factors. Such as injuries. Both these types of disease can occur to the body and mind.

Manasika Doshas (Doshas of the mind)

Rajas – quality of mind, that drives us to take actions, Tamas – that leads to inaction and lethargy. 

Notes:—Satva, rajas and tamas are known as the three mahagunas, they are primary or natural qualities responsible for creation of all the substances of the world and said to be present in every one of them and concerned with intelligence stuff. Out of them, satva is considered to be pure and not having any bad effect, whereas the other two are bad and having bad effects. Hence rajas and tamas are considered as the dosas of the mind, when they become increased above the specific limit.

How to test patients?

Examination of disease:

Disease should be examined by its 

Types of Habitat (Desha) in Ayurveda

In this science, it is said to be of two kinds – Bhumi desha – region of land and Dehadesha – the body. 

Notes:  Jangala region is arid or desert-like land with no mountains or hills, has less vegetation, poor water resources and is more Breezy. Anupa is marshy land with more of water, more vegetation, very less of sunlight and heat. Sadharana is the moderate type with few mountains, hills, moderate water, vegetation and sunlight.

Kala Bhedh-(kinds of time)

Kala (time) which is relevant to the (administration and selection of) drug (or therapies) is of two kinds-viz. that (time) commencing with ksana (moment) etc., and that of the stages of the disease. 

Notes:—Ksana is the minimum unit of time measurement and is equivalent to the time required for winking of the eyelid once or uttering of one letter of the alphabet; kastha, kala, nadika, muhurta, yama, ahoratra, paksa, masa, rtu, ayana and samvatsara-are the successive units, knowledge of this external time is essential for collection of drugs at appropriate period, preparation of recipes, administration to the patient etc.

The disease develops in the body in different successive stages and not all of a sudden; each stage has its own characteristic signs and symptoms, recognition of each stage helps the physician to assess the strength of the disease and decide the appropriate drug and therapy required for that stage, hence the necessity of two kinds of time.

Types of therapies (Ausudha Bhedh) in Ayurveda 

There are two types of medicines.

1. Shamana – Palliative treatment – which brings the Dosha to normalcy, useful in initial stages of diseases

2. Shodhana – Purification treatment – which expels imbalanced Dosha out of body. – Useful in aggravated stages of diseases.


For the doshas of the Body, Basti (enemata), vireka (purgation) and vamana (emesis) are the Best therapies respectively; likewise are taila {oil), ghrta (ghee, Butter fat) and madhu (honey).

Notes: Administration of different kinds of medicinal enemas is Best for mitigating vata, producing purgation is for pitta and vomiting is for kapha; use of medicated oils (Both internally and externally) is ideal for mitigating vata, ghee for mitigating pitta and honey for kapha.

Notes:—Dhi is the ability of the person to decide good and bad, dhairya is ability to adhere to the good, avoid the bad, and withstand difficulties with strong will; atmadi vijnana is possessing or obtaining correct knowledge of the soul, of the aims and pursuits of the present life as well as of future life etc., in other words, a philosophical view of human life. These are especially of great value in the treatment of mental disorders.

Cikitsa padah-(four limbs of treatment) in Ayurveda

– Bhishag (Doctor), Dravya (medicine), Upastha (Nurse) and Rogi (patient) are the four factors in treatment. Each of these four have further four qualities.

Qualities of doctor

Qualities of medicine:

Qualities of nurse:

Qualities of patient

Roga Bhedh-(kinds of diseases) in Ayurveda

Two main types, which are further divided into two types.

Qualities of difficult to treat diseases

Paitient worth rejection 

The physician should reject the patient (refuse treatment to) who is hated By the physician and the king (or government) and who hates them; who hates himself (dejected in life), who is not having the equipment and other facilities required for treatment, who is Busy with other activities (not having the required attention, leisure etc. towards the treatment), who is disoBedient (to the physician), whose life is coming to an end, who is of evil mind (violent, destructive), who is afflicted with great grief, who is full of fear, who is ungrateful and who thinks himself to Be a physician (in respect of deciding drug, therapies, food, activities etc.)

Adhydya sangraha (chapters of the treatise)

Further on, shall Be the enumeration of the names of chapters of this treatise;




Chikitsa sthana.

Kalpa siddhisthana 


Thus there are, one hundred and twenty chapters, divided into six sections

Thus ends the chapter known as Ayuskamiya, Desire for long life, the first of sutrasthana in Ashtanga hridayam. 

With this we have finish, all the verses of Chapter-1 of Ashtanga Hridayam, Sutrasthana under course, Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine, and Surgery, first year.

You can read the previous post of the chapter-1,
Desire for long life, Ashtanga Hridayam, Sutrasthana, Chapter-1, verse 1.9-1.14, BAMS 1st year.
Ashtanga Hridayam (Sutrasthana), Chapter-1,(BAMS Ist Year), verse1.1-1.8.

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