The Five Elements
According to Ayurvedic, everything is composed of five elements: air, fire, water, earth, and ether. From thought to plants, to the human being, the five elements are the building blocks of all matter. These elements are represented in humans by three “Doshas”, or energies: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha.
What are Doshas?
The Doshas are energies that pervade the body and mind, each with diﬀerent functions. Ayurveda assesses your state of being and the state of natural world in terms of three basic principles or Doshas.
- Vata is made up of air and space.
- Vata qualities are cool, dry, light, and mobile
- Its primary location is the colon. Vata is located in, and as the space in the open cavities of, the body—such as the spaces in between bones and joints, particularly in the lower back, pelvic area, and hips.
- Vata is responsible for all physical and mental movements. It is responsible for breathing, circulation of tissues, thinking, movements, elimination of wastes, etc.
- Pitta is made up of fire and water.
- Pitta qualities are hot, sharp, acidic, intense, oily.
- Its primary location is the small intestine. Pitta is also located in the liver, spleen, eyes, skin, blood, heart, brain, etc.
- Pitta is the transformative force responsible for all biochemical reactions in the body. It produces digestion, metabolism, courage, clarity, glow, complexion, lusture, intellect, and vision.
- Kapha is made up of water and earth.
- Kapha’s qualities are stable, oily, heavy, dense, smooth, and cool.
- Its primary location is lungs. It is also located in the upper part of the body- head, nose, throat, chest, fatty tissues, ligaments, tendons, etc.
- Kapha is responsible for stability, structure, growth, protection, endurance, calmness and cohesion, memory, learning capacity, and promotes the qualities of love and calmness.