Properties of Material Objects and its Effect on Human Body

Material objects, according to Sanskrit literature, have 6 sorts of tastes, 20 sorts of qualities, and 2 sorts of forces in them.

·  The 6 tastes are sweet, acid, salt, bitter, acrid and astringent.

·  The 20 qualities of objects are as follows: Heavy, light, soft, dull, oily, consistent, watery, hot, fixed, sharp, tremulous, delicate, demulcent, smooth, harsh, transparent, hard, pungent, coarse and cold.

·  The two forces are heating and cooling.

All substances are supposed, after digestion, to assume one or other of three sorts of properties: thus sweets and salts are supposed to be turned after digestion into sweets; acids, into acids; and bitters, acrids and astringents, into aacrids.


 Effect of Material Objects on the Human Body

The various notions of medicines on the human system are described in considerable detail. All diseases being supposed to be caused by derangement of the humours, namely, wind, bile, phlegm, blood, etc., all medicines are likewise supposed to have some influence upon one or other of these humours.

Sushruta divides medicines into two classes, with reference to their action on the Humours, namely, Sansamana and Sansodhana.

  • Sansamanaare medicines which rectify the deranged state of the humours and calm their excited action, without promoting the excretions.
  • Sansodhanaare medicines which remove collections of bad humours and discharge them by the excretions. The first is subdivided into 3 orders, namely, medicines influencing wind, bile, and phlegm, respectively. The second includes emetics, purgatives, errhines and other depuratories.

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