The Five Waters of Kapha

Updated: Mar 31, 2021

“The five waters of Kapha are referred to as kledaka, avalambaka, bodhaka, tarpaka, and sleshaka. The first water, kledaka, originates in the stomach. It is the moist, foamy liquid that aids digestion. Kledaka nourishes the remaining four waters, coalesces the thinking faculties, inspires fluid interaction with the world, and pours gentility into human nature. The currents of the second water, avalambaka, flow in the heart, providing it with lubricating plasma and thus insulating it from heat. It makes the limbs limber. Avalambaka resonates psychologically as the protective, embracing, and maternal nature of a person. The third water, bodhaka, strings together the five waters of the body river. It wets the tongue and gives perception of taste. It channels the sensory perception that beckons the convivial juices before eating. Psychologically, bodhaka guards the impulse of quantitative intake to body, mind, and senses. The fourth water, tarpaka, flows in the head and calms the sense organs. It washes the senses of discretion and vitalizes the gates of memory. Proper functioning of tarpaka ensures clear memory and vital fulfillment of the senses. The fifth water, sleshaka, causes the joints to operate smoothly. By lubricating and solidifying them with its unctuous protective gel, it gives cohesion to body movements and fluidity to both mind and body.


The Kapha principle generally has the least malfunctions. Disorders such as impairment of taste and digestion, obesity, anorexia, bulimia, inertia, loss of memory, excess phlegm, water retention in joints, and certain respiratory conditions are considered Kapha disorders.”


Excerpt from, "A Life of Balance," By Maya Tiwari, 1995. Pages 25 and 26.



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