AGNI – The Fire in Us…

We all are sustaining a life that is a gift of the fire within us. Yes, you have read it right. A living life supporting fire exists within our body that governs the energy cycle inside us. Energy is crucial for all life-sustaining activities. We are living as we can convert the food molecules around us into the usable form of energy inside us and it is all possible due to the digestive fire – THE AGNI – inside our body.

Digestion is an important body process. Whatever we eat or drink is not in the form that our body accepts to provide energy and nutrition to our cells. The food that has been consumed by us needs to be first digested inside our body so that it can be converted into a readily consumable form that is absorbed by the cells of our body to perform life-sustaining activities.

Whenever we talk about Digestion, the primary organ that has the pivotal role is our stomach. Ayurveda has associated the act of digestion in our stomach with Agni – the fire. If we talk in details about the Agnis or Fires, Ayurveda advocates that Agni is one of the five vital elements that constitute the human body. Agni has pertained to digestive activity that is the initiation of energy production in our body.

In the ideal conditions that are best for the body, Ayurveda refers to the healthy form of Agni called Samagni, which is caused by the equilibrium of all dosas. Such Agni is also called as the fire of normalcy. To emphasize, this is the best state of Agnis in equilibrium and is the ideal conditions when all the doshas i.e. Vata, Pitta and Kapha are in equipoise state.

In the events of disturbed equilibrium, there are three other forms of agnis that predominate in the body. These are referred as the three disturbed states of Agnis in the Ayurveda. These fires are still involved in digestion inside our bodies to perform the digestive activity.

According to Ayurveda, there are three forms of Agnis:

  1. Visam-Agni
  2. Tikshan-Agni
  3. Mand-Agni

These three Agnis are caused by their dosas predominance respectively and are the disturbed form of agnis that rule in the digestive system as per the disturbed dosha condition which is dominant in the body.

  1. Visam-Agni is a form of Agni that exhibits an unsteady or erratic type of digestion. This form of Agni is very unstable and is changing from one day to the next or from day to night. It has a very unpredictable behavior and has been associated in accordance with qualities of Vata Dosha.
  1. Tikshan-Agni is a form of Agni that appears in the increased digestive activity state. This form of Agni is capable of digesting large quantities of food. It is very quick acting fire and once in operation, it desires more, which often result in overeating. This kind of behavior is depicted by the pitta, hence this fire is often associated with this form of Dosha.
  1. Mand-Agni is the form of digestive fire that causes decreased digestive activity. The digestive is incapacitated in its activity and is incapable of digesting even the minuscule quantities of food within the scheduled time. Such diminished or cold behavior is similar to the nature and quantities of Kapha.

Only samagni which is due to the normalcy of all the doshas is ideal for maintenance or health.  While all these three disturbed forms of fires are considered unhealthy leading to the production of many diseases.

Today Most of us are having some of the other forms of stomach related ailment. To name a few, Indigestion, constipation, loss of appetite, Diarrhea and IBS are very common.  Ayurveda has given solutions to bring the unhealthy state of digestive fires to healthy state, which includes various herbs and herbal formulations.  Nirogam has identified few exceptional herbs and remedies that are time-tested and are the resultants of the knowledge imparted by the sages and saints after a keen understanding of ancient medicine and herbology.

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