Hridaya (Heart) an Ayurvedic Perspective
Did you know those 5 facts about the Hridaya?
- The word Hridaya is the Sanskrit word for the heart. It is derived from the 3 verbs.
Hru – means Harati (to receive from)
Da – means Dadati (to give)
Ya – means Yagati (to control)
- Ayurveda considers the Hridaya as one of the 10 important regions where the prana (life) exists (pranayatan). Ch. Su. 29/3
The Pranayatan 10 regions include the right and left temporal regions, Marmas – shiras (head), hridaya (heart), basti (bladder/kidneys), kantha (larynx and tracheal region), rakta (blood), shukra (semen), ojas (vital essence), and guda (anal region).
- The hridaya is situated in between two mammary glands and is the essence of rakta (blood) and sleshma (kapha dosha). It has been conserved as a derivative of matraj bhava (maternal factor) by Charaka Ch. Sha. 4/15.
- Sushruta described the shape of hridaya is a like a reverse lotus (Su. Sha 4/32). The functioning of the heart has been described as a lotus which opens at day time and closes in the night. While asleep the cardiac output decreases.
- Did you know that all the 3 doshas are located in the hridaya? It is the seat of Vyana Vayu (responsible for our circulation), Sadhaka Pitta (represents the enzymes in the heart as well as emotions) and Avalambaka Kapha (represents interstitial fluid) and Ojas (8 drops).
Ojas is the essence of the dhatus (bodily tissues). It represents the energy required for all the functions of the body and mind. All the sense and motor organs, mind and life itself depends on ojas in their proper functioning.
The blood is nourished with oxygen in the lungs and is moved by the Vyana vayu. The heart is an organ which draws fluid including blood from all over the body and then supplies it to all the parts of the body.
The heart is the seat of the consciousness, the seat of knowledge, intellect and the mind,
In Ayurveda the brain can also be called hridaya, showing us that the heart and brain interact in a dynamic relationship, regulating many aspects of cognition and emotional experience.
A very good treatment for Hridroga (heart disease) is called Uro Vasti. The treatment involves the patient retaining warm medicated oil on a specific area of the chest over a specific period of time. The medicated oil used for this treatment are Balaashwagandhadi taila, Bala taila and Narayana taila.
The treatment is best done over a period of 7 days.
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