Hridaya marma and its involvement in Uro basti - a practical experience
It is known that the external Basti are indicated, for their specific snigdha/sveda nature, in numerous conditions and their practical applications are innumerable. In consideration of the different areas of the body where it is possible to apply an external Basti, we can truly say that this type of ayurvedic treatment is extraordinarily varied and versatile and its application potentials are extremely interesting.
There are several application areas for external Basti, some very well-known and typical such as Kati Basti (sacred/lumbar area), Griva Basti (cervical region), Janu Basti (knee), etc. But in the specific case we will deal with, during this work shop, is the application in extremely special and especially delicate area; her must be observed and treated with extreme care. This is not an external Basti of a common nature. Uro basti (also known as Hridu Basti or Uro vasti) defines the application of an external Basti and hence the maintenance of oily substances (and also of other nature) in the specific heart area, a part of the body extremely sensitive and dominated by very specific structures.
But beyond the particular place of application we find here the most superficial expression of Hridaya Marma, one of the most important and vital Marma points described in the classical texts. Hridaya is considered one of the three Mahamarma (the three main Marma) located in the bust and represents a very important vital point.
Charaka includes the concept of Trimahmarma in what are called Dasha Pranayatana, or the 10 life vital centers. Hridaya Marma is considered by Sushruta a Sadya Pranahara Marma, or a vital point that leads to immediate loss of prank (in this case perfect synonym of life) and therefore to death, if specifically injured. The Uro basti treatment therefore, just because applied in such an important vital area, is acting at different levels.
For its particular nature Uro Basti is prescribed by the Ayurvedic physician when there are specific conditions to be carefully evaluated, often other anticipatory treatments are needed before its actual execution. The indications that are common to this treatment are represented in the category of Hrid Roga disease, in which we als find arrhythmias and post-infarction, situation this last, where there is a Kshaya, a tissue depletion (loss), where this type of treatment may favor better regeneration of the tissue with consequent improved functionally of the same.
But the treatment has not just “physical” aspects (we know that in Ayurveda nothing is separated from the rest, so it is never acting at a single level), but also psychological and above all emotional. So a possible indication is the emotional blocks. In these cases a Uro Basti can literally favor a meltdown of the nodes, allowing people to retrieve the ability to feel connected to the correct flow of emotions.
It can also be useful in all those conditions of fatigue, lack of energy, decay, premature aging linked to a defect of Rasa Dhatu and Ojas. Hridaya defines the heart, has a precise etymology that describes its function. Hri derives from Harati, that means “to receive”; Da comes from Dadati, meaning “give”, while Ya indicates “move” “go” “to circulate”, thus defining as a whole the function of the heart as a pump able to give, receive and circulate blood. But it is not just this, it’s not just about considering the biological organ.
Hridaya means, however, also a “central point” from which everything moves and to which everything converges. Hridaya ist the real root of movement, the spread of movement and information to and from it. The relationship between Prana Vayu and Hridaya through Sadhaka Pitta is responsible for the initiation of the movement. It is the house of Oja, which from here through the blood stream is led throughout the body to maintain strength, luster, vitality. It is also seat of Manas, the function of the mental, connected to the control of sense organs and emotions. Its functions are regulated and influenced by Prana and Vyana Vayu, Sadhaka Pitta and Avalambaka Kapha.
In this work shop we will see not only the theoretical aspects, but also the practical application of a Uro Basti , we will find the technical details and the possibilities of application; we will see which are the most appropriate medicated Taila (oils) to use and deepen the relationship that the treatment has in specific with Hridaya marma. This path will also come through reading a clinical case that we can analyze together.