by Myrthe Wieler
According to Ayurvedic tradition, our bodies heal from within..working with nature to maintain balance of these doshas.
"Knowing the balance/dominance of the three doshas within yourself will help you to understand your character traits and tendencies. It might help you realize that they are part of your makeup and in a way out of your control. This in turn can help you to be more forgiving and loving towards yourself and your 'tendencies'." - Esther Ekhart
The balance of these doshas is a dynamic process that involves your mind, body and the environment. Applying these insights into your daily life can help improve your overall health.
5 Elements - 3 Doshas
According to Ayurveda we are made up of the five elements and individual consciousness (jivatman). These five elements (maha bhutas) are Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Space and the combination of these elements give rise to three doshas.
“The doshas express particular patterns of energy - unique blends of physical, emotional and mental characteristics” - Deepak Chopra
The three doshas are a blend of the maha bhutas:
1. Vata (air/space)
2. Pitta (fire/water)
3. Kapha (earth/water)
By recognising the characteristics of these doshas in yourself you can figure out how dominant or recessive these doshas are in you. For example...
It’s very Vata to:
- Be hungry at any time of the day or night
- Love excitement and constant change
- Go to sleep at different times every night
- Skip meals and keep irregular habits
- Digest food well one day and poorly the next
- Display bursts of emotion that are short lived and quickly forgotten
- Walk quickly
It’s very Pitta to:
- Feel ravenous if dinner is half an hour late
- Live by your watch and resent having your time wasted
- Wake up at night feeling hot and thirsty
- Take command of a situation or feel you should
- Learn from experience that others' find you too demanding, sarcastic/critical at times
- Have a determined walk
It's very Kapha to:
- Mull things over for a long time before deciding
- Wake up slowly, lie in bed a long time/ need coffee when rising
- Happy with the status quo and keep it by giving in
- Respect other’s feelings (you feel genuine empathy)
- Seek emotional comfort from eating
- Have graceful movements, liquid eyes and a gliding walk..even when overweight.
So how do I recognise these characteristics?
Take a Dosha quiz
The best way to find out your dosha is by speaking with an Ayurvedic doctor. However, there are many online quizzes like this from the Kripalu centre which will give you an indication.
More Ayurveda on EkhartYoga
Seasonal Cleanse with Ayurveda & Yoga is a two-week programme using the science of Ayurveda alongside yoga to help you understand your body and support it to work at its best. With lectures from Ayurvedic specialist John Immel, yoga classes for your digestion, a 5-day cleanse and yoga tailored for your dosha.