According to the Vedas and Puranas, it all started with Lord Vishnu when a lotus sprouted on his navel inside which was Lord Brahma representing the root of creation. Brahma is said to be the ultimate creator of the world we live in along with all the other life forms. This is a temporary universe having birth and death, unlike Vishnu who is eternal and beyond. The Pancha Mahabhuta a.k.a. the five elements of nature have originated from Brahma himself. According to Ayurveda, the world, as well as human bodies, consist of these great 5 elements of life (Panchamahabhutas) namely Earth (पृथ्वी), Fire (अग्नि), Water (जल), Air (वायु), and Ether (आकाश). Every object in the environment has these five elements. Even our food, emotions as well as the actions are driven by the Panchamahabhutas.
Five Elements Of Life (Pancha Mahabhuta)
1. Ether (Creation)
Ether or space is the essence of emptiness. Space is what the other elements fill. Empty intestines, lungs, bladder, ears, as well as the blood vessels, form the most important components amongst the five elements of nature (Pancha Mahabhoota). Space signifies void, nothingness, dry, light, hollow as well as Vata-like qualities. Foods consisting of Ether are leafy vegetables, fenugreek, turmeric, and bitter melon. Eating these detoxify the mind-body and soul.
2. Air (Movement)
Air or Vayu is another one amongst the five elements of nature. Without air, lives cannot survive. This Mahabhuta is our body represents the Vata Dosha. It is light, cold, rough, dry as well as mobile. Foods of air quality are beans, lentils, dry fruits along with bitter, astringent and pungent edibles. Oxygen is an air element in the body which governs the movement of sensory or motor impulses.
3. Fire (Conversion)
Agni Mahabhuta is an essential one. The qualities of fire amongst the 5 elements of life are hot, dry, intense, and sharp. Friction from Vayu produces Agni or heat. This energy is responsible for your metabolic as well as the digestive processes. This makes it synonymous with Pitta Dosha. Ginger, black pepper, garlic, and chilies are dominant with the fire element. A balance leads to normal body temperature, glowing skin, proper digestion as well as clarity of mind.
4. Water (Transformation)
Fire after condensation forms water which has transformative qualities. Water is colorless, odorless, shapeless, moist, cold, and necessary for existence. Water does not smell or has a taste. Blood and other fluids in the human body are of the water element. The foods high in water element are fruits, buttermilk as well as juicy vegetables. Amongst all the Panchamahabhutas, this one’s lubricating and necessary for balancing Vata as well as Pitta.
5. Earth (Stabilization)
Amongst the other 5 elements of life, you can perceive the Earth element by all your five senses – smell, hear, touch, taste as well as sight. It is solid, grounded, heavy, dense, stable, slow and represents the Kapha Dosha. Food, herbs and individual characteristics that signify these properties constitute the Earth element.
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