Kapha Dosha • Earth & Water

Image by Larm Rmah

Image by Larm Rmah

All Vata, Pitta, and Kapha in a normal state endow the person with unaffected sense organs, strength, complexion, and happiness and also with a long life-span as virtue, wealth and enjoyment pursued properly endow the person with great well-being here and in the world hereafter.’
— Caraka Samhita Ch 12 : V 13

Kapha is the biological energy combination of Earth & Water in nature and within us and translates to as ‘that which sticks’. Kapha is the most gross, tangible, and manifest of the three doshas as it is the building quality in nature. Kapha is also the most inert dosha and is the strong foundation on which all of life is built.

Qualities of Kapha

We can identify Kapha both in ourselves and nature around us through the qualities of: moist, cold, heavy, dull, soft, sticky, and static. Think of heavy and wet winter snow or the soft moss that clings to rocks and the forest floor in spring. In our bodies it is the fact that we are solid beings, it is our ability to taste food on our tongue, and gives us the enjoyment of indulging in the 5 senses.

Location of Kapha

Time of Day: 6:00am - 10:00am and 6:00pm - 10:00pm. This is why we feel so rested when we rise before 6am (before Kapha Time) and go to bed before 10pm (during Kapha time) because that inert energy is best for falling asleep, not so much waking up!

Time of Year: Late Winter & Spring

In the Body: The seat of Kapha is in the Chest (including the lungs & throat). Kapha also governs lymph, connective tissue, fatty tissue, the head, tendons, and ligaments and makes our bodily fluids like saliva, mucous, cervical fluid, semen, and spinal fluid.

Kapha in Balance

Kapha types are strong, resilient, and reliable in both health and personality. They would be described by others as compassionate, nurturing, kind, and hospitable. They are romantics at heart and enjoy the sensual pleasures of life (sexually and the use of the 5 senses to experience life: good music, good food, and luxury goods to caress their skin) Kapha types are excellent listeners and have a desire to be of service to the greater good. Deeply satisfied with life they want for little and when they do its quality over quantity.

Ways to encourage balance:

  • Do regular emotional housekeeping: therapy, life coaching, somatic therapy

  • Eat a Kapha reducing diet that has plenty of the bitter, pungent (spicy), and astringent tastes

  • Use color therapy with bright vivid colors and textures that speak to your inner opulence and gemstones such as rubies and garnets

  • Practicing giving without receiving anything in return

  • Avoid napping

  • Engage in stimulating exercise like running, hiking, and vigorous yoga

  • Vary daily & weekly routines

  • Surround yourself with motivating people

  • Create strong boundaries

  • Know the difference between ‘nice’ & ‘kind’

  • Dry brush, dry sauna, cold showers

Kapha Out of Balance

Kaphas out of balance begin to become too attached to people and things. They may have trouble getting out of their rut and experience depression and malaise which leads to lethargy and illness associated with being sedentary. Because of their natural desire to be of service to others an out of balance Kapha may have blurry boundaries and allow others to take advantage of them which can lead to resentment or complacency depending on the person. Over indulging in sweets, staying indoors, and becoming set in their ways are signs a Kapha needs to get moving.

Ways to create an imbalance:

  • Not moving the body

  • Focusing on material goods over emotional needs

  • Overeating

  • Using food to feel better

  • Eating a Kapha aggravating diet (this includes lots of sweets!

  • Spending too much time indoors

  • Sleeping too long or taking naps

  • Saying ‘Yes’ when they mean ‘No’

  • Avoiding new experiences

  • Living mentally in the past

Kapha dosha is the energy that allows us to enjoy the pleasures of this human experience. It is our desire to do good things, to rest and renew, and to remind ourselves life is just as much about being as it is doing. As the building quality we rely on this dosha to grow as a child but also to build lives that make us feel good and help further consciousness, it is truly the platform that is necessary for fire to transform and air to evolve. Kapha needs inspired to keep building and when it becomes sticky and stagnant that can be a hard rut to get out of. Just remember that Kapha likes slow and steady and that is exactly how change and variety can be added to the day-to-day: one experience at a time.

Mantra for Kapha

My superpower is my resiliency but I can always ask for help

I am strong, capable, and a builder of empires

I am Mother Nature and She is me