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A CRITICAL APPRAISAL OF SATTVA AND SIGNIFICANCE IN THE MANAGEMENT OF DISEASE *Corresponding Author

Authors:
  • Chaudhary Brahm Prakash Ayurved Charak Sansthan, New Delhi

Abstract

Sattva (Psychic strength) is one among three essentials of human existence (Ayu), other two are the body (Sharir) and the spirit (Atma). Health and life depends upon the proper functioning and coordination of these three entities. The knowledge of Sattva and its status provides way of maintaining positive well in accordance to Indian system of medicine. Sattva is an entity, which establishes the contact between the Soul and body for normal functioning of Indriya (sense organs). Sattva bala (status of sattva) provides an adequate status of well being of a person, thus giving a systemic and holistic approach to understand an individual. Ayurvedic literature provides a concise yet lucid concept of Sattva, which is useful to make decision of various therapeutic procedures and techniques. It enables insight, self-regulation, positive attitude and higher awareness. Hence, there is a need to assemble available references of sattva and crtically analyze it so that knowledge of sattva can be rationally used in clinical practice. literature of Sattva so that the knowledge of sattva can be available for daily
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A CRITICAL APPRAISAL OF SATTVA AND SIGNIFICANCE IN THE
MANAGEMENT OF DISEASE
Dr. Indra Rani1*, Dr. Satpal2, Dr. M. B. Gaur3, Dr. Yogesh Kumar Pandey4 and
Dr. Pooja Sabharwal5
1PG Scholar, 2nd Year, Dept. of Kriya Sharir, Ch. Brahm Prakash Ayurved Charak Sansthan,
Khera Dabar, Najafgarh 110073.
2PG Scholar, 1st Year, Dept. of Rachana Sharir, Ch. Brahm Prakash Ayurved Charak
Sansthan, Khera Dabar, Najafgarh 110073.
3Prof. and HOD of Dept. of Kriya Sharir, Ch. Brahm Prakash Ayurved Charak Sansthan,
Khera Dabar, Najafgarh 110073.
4Associate Prof., Dept. of Kaya Chikitsa, Ch. Brahm Prakash Ayurved Charak Sansthan,
Khera Dabar, Najafgarh 110073.
5Assistant Prof., Dept. of Rachana Sharir, Ch. Brahm Prakash Ayurved Charak Sansthan,
Khera Dabar, Najafgarh 110073.
ABSTRACT
Sattva (Psychic strength) is one among three essentials of human
existence (Ayu), other two are the body (Sharir) and the spirit (Atma).
Health and life depends upon the proper functioning and co-ordination
of these three entities. The knowledge of Sattva and its status provides
way of maintaining positive well in accordance to Indian system of
medicine. Sattva is an entity, which establishes the contact between the
Soul and body for normal functioning of Indriya (sense organs). Sattva
bala (status of sattva) provides an adequate status of well being of a
person, thus giving a systemic and holistic approach to understand an
individual. Ayurvedic literature provides a concise yet lucid concept of
Sattva, which is useful to make decision of various therapeutic
procedures and techniques. It enables insight, self-regulation, positive
attitude and higher awareness. Hence, there is a need to assemble available references of
sattva and crtically analyze it so that knowledge of sattva can be rationally used in clinical
practice. literature of Sattva so that the knowledge of sattva can be available for daily
World Journal of Pharmaceutical Research
SJIF Impact Factor 8.074
Volume 7, Issue 13, 375-385. Review Article ISSN 2277 7105
Article Received on
12 May 2018,
Revised on 03 June 2018,
Accepted on 24 June 2018,
DOI: 10.20959/wjpr201813-12803
*Corresponding Author
Dr. Indra Rani
PG Scholar, 2nd Year,
Dept. of Kriya Sharir, Ch.
Brahm Prakash Ayurved
Charak Sansthan, Khera
Dabar, Najafgarh
110073.
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376
Rani et al. World Journal of Pharmaceutical Research
Practice. This paper will serves this purpose.
KEYWORDS: Sattva, Sattva sara purusha, Satvavajaya, Manas, Self-esteem.
INTRODUCTION
The word Sattva is derived from two terms „sat‟ and tva’, satto bhava.[1] Satvam
hitakarakamiti bhava (shabdakalpadrum). Satt refers to the existence, reality and truth.[2]
Sattva is being, existence, entity, true essence, disposition of mind, character, spiritual
essence etc.[3] Sattva is excellence of a person that is present by nativity, sustain untouched
from any type of emotion.[4] Sattva is the quality of mind and person with predominance of
sattva guna are mentally stable, does not causes frustration at time of sorrow, happiness,
anger, fear etc.[5] The word Sattvameans manas.[6] Chita, chetas, hrid are its synonym.[7]
Manas is apparatus by which awareness (consciousness) and ignorance (unconsciousness) of
knowledge occur.[8] Indriya (sense organs) are capable of perceiving their respective
arthas (objects) only when they are motivated by manas.[9] If there is no contact of mind
with sense organs and their objects, no understanding of subject can occur. Mind acts as the
driving force of all sense organs. Mind cannot be perceived by sense organ, so it is called
atindriya.[10] Manas unite the indriya with atma causing perception of knowledge occurs.
That is why Manas is one among the nine causitive substances (nine karan dravya). It posses
two attributes Anutvam and Ekatvam(only one of its kind). By virtue of these qualities, it
moves everywhere swiflty (due to Anutvam) but perceives only one abject at a time (due to
Ekatvam).[11] Hridya is considered the seat of manas.[12] Mansa has three attributes viz sattva,
rajas and tamas.[13] Chakrapani explains that the three attributes sattva, rajas and tamas
exhibit both physical and mental plans. Individuals of excellent sattva have firm
determination and steadiness of mind and senses. An individual is said to belong to that
particular type of mind by which dominates him. It is cultivated by the repeated assurance,
which is provided to an individual.[14] Repeated contact with rajasik things will built a rajasik
mind, tamasik things will built the tamsik mind and same with sattvik things will make a
sattvik mind. Sattva is one of components of dashvidaha pariksha of a diseased individual.
Then add meaning of sattva in this particular context. Status of sattva is associated to the
surroundings of an individual. They are not easily disturbed. The status of sattva get alters
according to the age, conditions, and stage of health and disease, types of food, types of
activities.
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Sattva according to different contexts is-
Acharya
Sattva
Charakacharya
Sattva is prime quality of mind
Susruthacharya
Sattva is quality of mind among according to the status of
sattva
Vagbhattacharya
Sattva is natural strength of mind
Patanjali Yoga Sutra
Sattva is used for mind
Bhagwada Geeta
Sattva is mind
Shada darshana
Sattva is one among the three attribute of prakriti
(evaluation process)
Sattva: an indespensible quality
Acharya charak describes that an excellent student should be udara-sattva, (with dominant of
sattva).[15] This helps in concentration of mind and self control on the body and mind which
leads to good physical and mental health. Sattva facilitate to get the light of knowledge which
removes the darkness of injudiciousness. A student equipped with physical and mental
strength, moral values and spiritual qualities of sattva is blessed with fearlessness, for
aberration and strength, which are valuable, asserts of human life. Sattvik student can stick to
follow the rules of brahmcaharya and acquire higher moral and social virtue, to make him a
noble and successful individual. Most of our successful focuses are sattvika.
Acharya Susruta also describe the Sattvawana is a quality of patients, whose disease is easily
cured (sukhsadhya).[16] Such patients have self-control over their sense, which helps to
control the pathogenic factors. Sattvawan patients are aware of disease so they provide a
large space to doctor for making a decision about the adequate therapy and medicine. The
status of sattva will ensures degree of adherence of an individual to a particular medicine,
procedure and guidelines.
Acharya Vagbhatta (anupkramniya atura) describes that the person who are chanda, bheeru,
krodhi are not treatable because chanda, bheeru, krodhi are the qualities of an individual of
avar sattva (inferiority of sattva). Therapies like Agnikarma, ksharkarma etc are prohibited in
krudh(angry), bala(child), bheeru(feared), stri(female) and vridh(old-aged person)[17] as they
are of unstable mind, so incapable to bear even mild pain. If such individuals are treated with
these therapies the adequate effects of the therapy will not be observed. So such therapies
should avoided and milder forms should be administered in such patients. Even the food
which is consumed plays an important role in determining the status of sattva. Sattvik food
that lead to longevity, promote strength of mind as well as body, health and pleasure. Food is
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moist, oily, nourishing and healthy.[18] Sattva of an individual can be determined by
observing their nature, behavior, attitude, attachment and their involvement in activities in
which they are interested. Individual will present the noblest qualities of body and mind. So
these things can help to determine the status of sattva.
Sattva and sharir
Sattvaj bhava (Factors derived from sattva)
Sattva is the connecting link which unifies soul with the body. On the eve of death when
mind starts leaving the body, a change in the normal behavior and inclination occurs. The
sense organs are disturbed, strength diminishes and the individual is succumbs to the disease.
An individual devoid of mind, breathe their last because the sense organ derive their
inspiration from mind only. There are three attributes of manas viz sattvika, rajasa and
tamasa. The mind dominated by any of three attribute present life follows in the subsequent
life as well. When the individual is endowed with the sattvika type of mind from his previous
life, the individual can recall things even beyond the life (Events of past life). Because of this
power to recall things of the past incarnation, the individual is called as jatismara.[19]
During intrauterine life, six factors are helpful in the formation of fetus; they are derived from
mother, father, soul, rasa, satmya, sattva and atma.[20] Innate qualities manifested due to
mind. They are likings, conduct, parity, enmity, memory, attachment, detachment, matsarya
(strong desire not to part with), velour, fear, anger, drowsiness, enthusiasm, sharpness,
softness, seriousness and instability.[21]
Sattva and Yoga Darshan
In literature of yoga, word citta is intended for sattva.[22] Yoga Darshan is defined as method
of control over the mind. Pratyahara the fifth stage of Astang yoga is link between the body
and mind. It works on mind, detache it from sense organs. Raja yoga, unique concept of yoga
darshan deals with the techniques of harnessing the mind. Sattva is the power of one‟s
unlimited potentials that moves an individual to the perfection. This is reflected in modern
psychology as self-esteem with clear definition and tools for assessment. Yoga helps to
correct the basic limits of the mind by improving self awareness, self control, and self
esteem.[23] Yoga helps in reducing anxiety, depression and improves self esteem.[24] Yoga
promotes the quality of life by strengthening sattva (self-esteem).[25]
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Importance of sattva pariksha
In the context of dasha vidha pariksha, sattva is depicted at point of examination to assess
strength of individual and disease. Pravara, madhyama and avara are types of sattva
according to rogi bala pramana. Based on the strength, the pravara, madhyama and avara
sattva are three categories of sattva.[26] Sattva pariksha (method of assessment of status of
sattva) is useful to access the bala (strength) of an individual.
Types of sattva
Pravar sattva
Following ten points are measure of strength of sattva of an individual. The person of pravar
sattva comprise the qualities of sattva sara individuals are Smritimanto (good memory),
Bhaktimanto (believe in God), Kratgya (greatfulness), Prgya (wisdom purity), Suchyo
(cleanliness), Mahotsaha (excessive enthusiasm), Daksha (courage), Dhira (having patience),
Samarvikranta-yodhina (brave, fighting spirit), Tyakatavishada (devoid of unnecessary
tension and sorrow), Suvayavsthit gati (proper way of thinking), Gambhir Buddhi Chesta
(thinking deeply and do accordingly), Kalyana-abhiniveshina (well-wisher and helping
nature). Even though they posses weak physique, they can tolerate every panic condition due
to the superiority (majority) of sattva guna.
Madhyam sattva
A person with madhyam sattva can tolerate the pain, by appreciation from others. When they
are appreciated, motivated, inspirited and encouraged they can fight against the frightened
situation.
Avar sattva
The severity of presentation of symptoms depends on the predominance of sattva guna as
some patients with less severe pathology are in state of panic, whereas, some are sitting
quietly even after having severe disease. Individual who posses big physique but weak sattva
cannot be consoled easily. These are susceptible to fear, grief, greed, delusion and ego.
whenever they listen or come across the fearful, terrifying and panic situations or vision
or blood, they fall victims to depression, pallor, fainting or death. Such individuals may
possess plump physique but they cannot tolerate even mild pain or ill feeling in spite of
repeated assurance.[27]
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Depending upon the status of sattva individual suffering from disease can be classified into
two groups. One who suffering from a severe disease but presents it as a mild disease,
because of superiority excellence of sattva, strength and body is called guru vyadhit. The
other who in spite of suffering from a mild disease presents himself as suffering from a
severe disease due to inferiority of sattva is called laghu vyadhita.[28] Ignoring the sattva of
patient lead a physician to bad therapeutic decision, this may further lead to inadequate
management of disease which further increase severity of disease or end of life.
Acharya Susruta does not mention sattva separately but he explained the three qualities of
individuals according to the status of sattva, rajas and tamas. Equilibrium of these maintains
the healthy state of body. Proportion of sattva, raja and tamas varies from person to person.
On basis of predominance of guna the individuals are said rajasika(superiority of rajas),
tamasika (superiority of tamas) and sattvik(superiority of sattva).[29] The person endowed
with superiority of sattva does not frustrate at time of distress and overcome panic situation
because of his self- restraint and firmness. The person with the superiority of rajo guna can
overcome problems by getting appreciation and motivation from other. The person with the
superiority of tamo guna cannot tolerate any type of regret or penitence and they cannot
overcome from these situations.
Kapha prakriti individuals sattvawaan as they are calm, non-aggressive, delicate, stable
minded and have pleasing face. They are blessed with steady thoughts, steady determination,
excellent tolerance, good memory, concentration power, a little influenced by praise.[30]
Sattva: An important modality of treatment
Sattvavajaya Cikitsa is considered as one of three broad approaches to therapy (trividha
chikitsa). Sattvavajaya means to overcome or control the mind, or a method of restraining or
withdrawal of the mind from unwholesome objects (Artha).[31] Having control over the
manas such as to control it or withdraw it from coming into contact with harmful or
unwholesome objects is the main object of Sattvavjaya. The term Sattvavajaya implies to that
modality in which control the mind from the objects that are hazards for the health is primary
focus. Chakrapani illustrates that Satvavjaya can be incorporated in both Davavyapasraya as
well as Yuktivyapasraya Chikitsa. This can be secured by directing mind towards wholesome
objects and restraining it from unwholesome objects by promoting Jnanam (knowledge),
Vijnanam (Knowledge of the scriptures and texts). It diminishes the rajas and tamas and
increases the sattva guna, Dhairya(patience), Smriti(Remembers the real nature of things),
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Samadhi (a condition of mind when manas losses the contact with the external objects,
complete cessation of all types of dukha or vikara)[32] are other methods to achieve this goal.
In Shrimad Bhagwadgita, three attributes of nature are described, sattva, Rajas and Tamas.
All individuals have three attributes in them although proportion may vary from individual to
individual. Each of three attributes is responsible for bondage of birth and death. Sattva guna
is responsible for knowledge, it congenial to health. It binds the soul through love for
knowledge.[33] Sattva guna gives the experience of happiness. It becomes powerful by
suppressing the Rajas guna and Tamas guna. When the person speaks good, think good and
acts well, it enhances the sattva.[34] The result of sattva guna is purity of mind and
consolidation of of knowledge.
The person with the predominance of sattva guna reaches highest (state of abode of god).
Middle state (rajjo guna) is the world of human beings and the lowest state (tamo guna) is
that of the creatures lower than the human being. Individual with sattvaguna worship god,
individual with rajas worship yakshas and demons and tamo guna individuals worship evil
spirits and ghosts. Individuals with sattva guna like the food that lead to longevity (ayu),
promote righteous tendencies, strengthen the health and joy. Food which are succulent,
greasy, nourishing and appetizing, keep the body in healthy and sattvik state. A yajna when
performed in the prescribed manner as over duty, with concentration without wishing for
rewards, are known as sattvik yajan.
Sattvik penance (tappa)
Penance of body for worship of god, brahmins, guru, piety simplicity and non-violence fall in
this category. Penance of speech is defined - speech which upset no one, truth which is
peasant and beneficial and expression of good thoughts. Penance of mind is considered as
maintenance of pleasant and calm mind, contemplation, meditation, restraint thoughts. The
penance of body, speech and mind when performed with absolute concentration, faith and
without desire for reward, are called righteous or sattvik penances.
Sattvik charity
The charity that is done out of a sense of duty, without any hope for being rewarded and done
with keeping in mind the place, the time and beneficiary is called sattvik charity.
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Sattvik karma (action)
The individual doing is karma as ordained in the scriptures, is neither attached nor indifferent
to his actions and has no desire for the results, the action is called sattvik karma.
Sattvik purusha (persons)
The individual free from his consciousness or vanity of being a active person who has
patience and enthusiasm for his action but is neither happy with the success nor sad with the
failure of his action is sattvika purusha.[35]
DISCUSSION
Sattva determine behavior, appearance, desire, attitude, confidence, enthusiasm of an
individual. Most of our successful personalities are of pravar sattva. Many times they
become angry and fierce; it is an affected quality, not a weakness. Sattvik person get angry
for a purpose but not because of passions and emotions. Other people who generally get
disturbed and hold grudges, are of avar sattva. Sattvik person are helpful, considerate,
accommodative, cooperative and compassionate. Every discordant thoughts, feeling or
emotion must pay the penalty in the physical manifestation of some discord. The mind of an
individual is qualified according to his repeated action, because that quality must be
predominating in him.[36] These faculties vary according to the degree of parity of an
individual. Body follows the mind so if the mental faculties are pure then one gets a divine
body. Similarly, the mind also follows the body. So as per yukti pramana, before garbh
sanskara in pregnancy, listening sattvik stories, motivational stories, geeta and proper sattvik
aahar vihar to mother, will play an important role in the development of perfect sattva of
child.[37] From all above description, it comes to notice that sattva is the prime quality of
mind, by which the individual is enriched with confidence, memory, enthusiasm, etc. The
superiority of sattva is responsible for the perfection of body as well as mind because the
physique is merely an out-picturing of the status of sattva.[38]
CONCLUSION
Sattva (manas) plays a very important role in the maintenance of the health of an individual
and regulates the body functions so sattvavajaya sort of treatment is specifically indicated for
the treatment of illnesses caused by the unwholesome objects of mind.[39] Yoga is a modality
that helps an individual to attain mental and physical stability. It is meant to be done by
increasing the predominance of sattva so that the mind can be free from diversions and
afflictions. Sattvik people have a clear mind in which truth is reflected without distortion. It is
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hard to define the sattva as mind, because sattva has far more implications. Today we live in
very turbulent world, where breaking of law, distortion, violence, cheating, terrorization and
dishonest have become socially and morally acceptable. The superiority of sattva is essential
to be mentaly and physicaly healthy.
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... Pandey, Pooja Sabharwal]. [15] 2. Enhancing workplace wellbeing through understanding the three personality types; sattva, rajas and tamas according to samkhya is put forth by Dr.Modh. The researcher has considered these as important measures to ensure individuals' performance at their respective workplace. ...
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The term 'sattva' literally means essence, purity, and character of mind. It is one of the three fundamental qualities (triguna). [A.S.Sutra Sthana 1/29][1] It is characterized by lightness, knowledge, and enlightenment.[2] Psychological constitution, bio typology or body mind typology is an important concept of Ayurveda. Every individual has distinct physical, physiological, and psychological characteristics. Ayurveda classical texts provide a framework to help to understand an individual's mental constitution.
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