How Mental and Physical Diseases Arise and How They are Destroyed

How mental diseases arise and how they are destroyed?

Sage Vashishtha, spiritual seer instructing Lord Rama on the Methods to obtain Self Realization

In response to Rama’s inquiry about the cause of mental and physical diseases, Vashishtha responds:

“When the fixed Mind is agitated, then this body is agitated. Then there is no proper perception of things and Prana (life force) deviates from its  even path. It will stagger from its proper path like an animal hit by, and reeling from the wound of an arrow. Through such an agitation, Prana (life force) instead of pervading the whole body, steadily, equally and evenly, will vibrate everywhere at an unequal/ uneven rate.

Thereby the Nadis (subtle energy channels) will not maintain a steady position, but will quiver. Then to the body (which is the receptacle of food digested partially or completely), the Nadis are simply death, due to the imbalance/ fluctuation of the Pranas. The food which settles itself down in this body amidst such a commotion is transformed into incurable diseases. Thus through the primary cause (of the mind) is the disease of the body generated. If this primary cause be annihilated at its root then all diseases will be destroyed.

When the intense desires of a person begin to manifest themselves externally and the ignorance in him preponderates, he performs fearful karmas and these in their turn breed bodily diseases. Again, the body is further subject to diseases through such actions as the eating of unwholesome food, living in unhealthy countries, and doing things at unreasonable hours, injuries inflicted, association with the wicked, longing after improper things, evil desires, bad thoughts, the distention and contraction of the orifices of the Nadis in the joints, and the interrupted flow of the beneficial Pranas throughout the body, cause the body to shrink away.  Then these blossom in the form of diseases in the body, waxing and waning- like the floods in a river during the long seasons of autumn and winter. Thus do we see that diseases, primary and secondary arise through the five-fold Bhutas (elements-air, fire, earth, water, ether).

Like base gold, which when placed in the crucible is transmuted through alchemical processes into pure gold, the mind is unfailingly rendered pure through true, virtuous and pure actions and through dependence upon the wise. In the mind purified thus there will be unalloyed bliss. If the mind becomes purified with true Satwaguna (virtuous thoughts/actions), then Prana-Vayu (life force) will begin to circulate freely throughout the body, the food taken in will be digested properly and hence no diseases will arise. If the diseases which afflict this body return to their primal cause, then they are destroyed. Their primary cause being (bad) thoughts, if these thoughts are destroyed, all bodily diseases will vanish.”

An excerpt from Yoga Vashishth, The Art of Self-Realization written roughly around 7500 B.C.E


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. abhishek sharma
    Feb 22, 2015 @ 06:53:04

    Hi Yachna,Thanks for sharing such valuable facts. I regularly read your posts. They seem to be quite pure and invigorating.But here I have a question. It is very difficult to practice the virtuous thoughts and actions practically in this world especially in business world where almost all the dealings are based upon cleverness and shrewdness.Do you think there is any better way to practice such life in this super materialistic world.Would like to hear your thoughts on this.And thanks again for sharing your beautiful thoughts.RegardsAbhishek SharmaSent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone From: Yachna Yoga <>; To: <>; Subject: [New post] How Mental and Physical Diseases Arise and How They are Destroyed Sent: Sun, Feb 22, 2015 12:53:21 AM

    yachna posted: "How mental diseases arise and how they are destroyed?

    In response to Rama's inquiry about the cause of mental and physical diseases, Vashishtha responds:

    “When the fixed Mind is agitated, then this body is agitated. Then there is no proper perce"


    • yachna
      Feb 22, 2015 @ 08:50:12

      Thanks Abhishekh for your question. I’m no guru or master, but based on my own experience here’s what I can share.
      It comes down to changing your outlook and your thought patterns. Desire is the root of all the thoughts and cut throat actions in people. You can either be controlled by the mind or let the mind control you. And what controls the mind? Our desires and wants. They rule our thoughts and these thoughts get converted to actions. So the root of all these problems lies in our desires for certain outcomes that please our senses and ego.

      The Bhagvad Gita is a great source of information on this topic as it delves into karma in detail. Basically do you karma without attaching yourself to the fruit of the action. There can be two outcomes of your action. They may produce result or they may not produce any result. If they produce result again there can be two outcomes-The result may be in your favor or it may not be. The point is doing what is right at that time. In the Mahabharat, adharma had to be met with adharma many times.

      “Rooted in equanimity, doing whatever happens to be the appropriate action in each given situation and not ever thinking about what has thus befallen you unsought, live non-volitionally —doing yet not doing what has to be done.” From vashishtha yoga,King Janaka.

      King Janaka was a Rajarshi- a king and a rishi. How corporate was his life? He was a king ruling a country and performing all his actions, but with his mind under complete self-control and equanimity. How?
      Janaka contemplated upon performing, without any desires, all actions of his life which crop up spontaneously every day. So never for a moment ruminating upon the past or future, productive as they are of evil, he began to perform his present duties with a full heart.

      “Ideas and thoughts are bondage; and their coming to an end is liberation. Therefore, be free of them and do whatever has to be done spontaneously.”

      We can’t change anyone else, but we can try to change ourselves by changing out thought patterns- which in itself is a hard task. The point about practicing virtuous thoughts really comes down to maintaining equanimity at all times, both good and bad. That means not getting elated when things go well and then drooping and feeling upset when things don’t go our way. If one can maintain equanimity of mind it equates to a balanced mind-a mind under control.
      “All that is good and auspicious flows from self-control. Self-control is the best remedy for all physical and mental ills.”
      This will require tremendous sense of awareness and practice. If it were so easy all would be doing it and earth would be Utopia.
      Here are some practical and very effective tools I use that have been a magic solution.
      1. If you can find an Art of Living center close by enroll for their program in which they teach the Sudarshan Kriya. This technique is a miraculous gift for mankind living in this time and age. I will discuss more about how this saved my life in my next article, but I can say just a daily 10 minutes practice in the morning of this technique will change you in a very positive way. It will uplift your mind and transcend it above all the petty office and mundane politics and shrewdness that surrounds you.
      2. Meditation in the evenings. Just a simple breath meditation. Completely relax your body. Breathe in slowly to a count of 10 and exhale slowly to a count of 10. Do for 20-30 minutes.
      3. Don’t let your mind/thoughts control you. This can be accomplished by cultivating awareness. Be watchful of your thoughts. Because thoughts translate into words and actions. This requires practice and hard work. But it can be done. And the kriya and meditation will help tremendously achieve a more peaceful state of mind.
      4. Read positive articles and books, surround yourself with good people. You will meet a lot of these people at your Art of Living Class. They are the kindest and nicest people I ever met. That will become your satsang.

      What other people do is their karma, what you do is yours.


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