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Hinduism and The 5 Elements

Different cultures and philosophies around the world have defined the “5 elements” of life. The system of five elements are found in Vedas, especially Ayurveda, the ‘Pancha Mahabhuta’, or “five great elements”, of Hinduism. The entire cosmic creation begins from the point of the Pancha Mahabhuta.

There are 5 elements in this universe:

Akash-Space

Vayu-Air

Fire-Agni

Jal-Water

Earth-Prithvi

Interestingly these 5 elements have got an interesting relationship to five senses.

Eternal Sky/ Ether:  Parameśvara - that in which everything is contained. The eternal sky or ether, it is only heard. Deep meditation is a way of connecting with this. It represents the space in which everything takes place.

Air: Representing God Vāyu & Hanuman-movement. Purity of air is essential to our lives; so it is recommended to have open houses with large windows to allow free air movement, especially in this Covid climate. It is a common practice to burn incense, you can hear and feel the air. It represents the gaseous state of matter and is responsible for the respiratory system.

Fire: Representing Gods, Agni & Shiva – transformation. Fire is an important find my man at a very early stage of our humankind. Vedic texts recommend us to gaze at the lamp and sunrise/sunset. Agni the god of fire is also worshipped by devotees. It represents form without substance and is responsible for digestion and perception.

Water: Representing Gods Varuṇa & Viṣhṇu – preservation. Water can be felt, tasted, seen and heard so it has a relationship with four senses. Water is part of any religious or cultural activity and used during pooja. It represents the liquid state of matter and is responsible for fluid metabolism in the body.

Earth: Representing Goddess Bhudevi & Brahma - creation. It’s believed that one has to be in constant contact with the earth by all senses. That’s why ancient sages often walked barefoot where ever possible. It represents the solid state of matter and is responsible for the physical constitution of the body. Bones, tissues and teeth are considered as earth elements.

(Ref: Expressed Digitally Raj and Hindu Scriptures Site)


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