Pancha Kosha Theory (Pancha Kosha Viveka) – Keys to Unveil the Essence of Mind and Body Intervention and Well-Being


Pancha Kosha Yoga is a method of Yoga practice that was developed by Bethsabe. It is based on the ancient texts of the Indian philosophy Taitiriya Upanishad as well as the inspirations of the teacher Selvarajan Yesudian.

In Yajurveda, Taitiriya Upnishada is mentioned which is the oldest Upanishad. Taitirya Upnishada is one of the living traditions of the Indian spiritual heritage and is widely practiced Upnishada. The whole subject material of the Taitirya Upnishada is mentioned in the Taitirya Arayanaka Chapters 7, 8, and 9 of Taitiriya Upnishada. In Taitiriya Upnishada three broad chapters are mentioned i.e., Shiksha Valli, Brahmananada Valli, and Brighu Valli. Panchakosha is the most popular contribution from Taitriya Upnishada which is mentioned by the dialogue between the guru Varuna and his son Bhrigu.

Pancha: Five

Kosha: Body, Cell, Envelope

Yoga: Union

Pancha Kosha Yoga is the union of the five bodies of which the human being is made up. Swastha Jeevana (Healthy living) can be attained only if an individual is healthy in all spheres of his life. Leading a virtuous life leads to a healthy existence at Sharirika (physical), Mansika (mental), and Aatmika (spiritual) levels. Eating the right kind of Anaa (food), and breathing a pure Prana (Uttama Nishwasha Ucchwasa) strengthens the Annamaya and Pranamaya Kosha. Engaging in contemplation and reflection strengthens the two Kosha i.e Manomaya and Vijnanamaya Kosha. Engaging in meditation and other Aatmika Kriya (spiritual activities) strengthens the Anandamaya Kosha. When all the five Koshas function in harmony it enriches the Ojas which results in nourishing the Bala and Teja which is required for effective and healthy functioning of mind and body.

  • Annamaya Kosha or the Food Sheath
  • Pranamaya Kosha or the Energy Sheath
  • Manomaya Kosha or the Mental Sheath
  • Vijnanamaya Kosha or the Intellectual Sheath
  • Anandamaya Kosha or the Bliss Sheath

Five bodies / Kosha can be distinguished by Taittiriya Upanishad

The following five bodies / Kosha can be distinguished by Taittiriya Upanishad:

SanskritTranslationExplanation Activated by
Annamaya KoshaFull of foodPhysical bodyAsana
Pranamaya KoshaFull of energyEnergetic bodyPranayama
Manomaya KoshaFull of instinctPsychic body emotionRelaxation by affirmations
Vijnanamaya KoshaFull of knowledgeConsciousness bodyEthics and moral
Anandamaya KoshaFull of blissTranscendental bodyMeditation 

All these Koshas have different attributes and functions. The first layers are the gross body which is made up of food, the second is the vital force of human being, the third one is the mental body which governs all mental activities and emotions, the fourth one is the intellectual part of the body and the last one is the bliss, the essential true nature which is devoid of all afflictions.

Annamaya Kosha

तैत्तिरिय उपनिषद 2: 2

अन्नाद्दे प्रजाप्रजायन्ते  याकाश्च पृथिवीश्रिता अथो अन्नेनैव जीवन्ति  अथैनदपि यन्त्यन्ततः 

Annam means Bhojana / food. As per Taittiriya Upanishad Anna (food) is considered the medicament of all. Annamaya Kosha is a representation of the gross Sharira (physical body). This sheath is regarded as the medium of Ulasa (enjoyment) for gross objects through the physical senses. According to this belief, all living beings in this world are born from Anna (food) and remain alive by the consumption of Anna (food). Even after death, the body can be consumed as food by animals, insects, or other beings. However, our physical health depends significantly on the foods that we eat, and therefore, a diet that a person follows can be used to determine his or her nature. Food is also regarded as an Aushadha (medicine), as it can help improve a person’s overall health. Various derivation of Anna is found in ancient kinds of literature

हनेहरणे means to be taken in.

Shabdastoma Mahanidhi – The Ahara is the substance that builds up the body.

Vaidyaka Shabdashindhu – Any substance which passes through the throat is called Ahara.

यजुर्वेद – अन्नपते अन्नस्यनोदेहि अतमिवस्यशुष्मिण 

In Yajur Veda there is a saying about Aahara, “Oh, God, give us food which does not cause any disease and also gives us strength.”

In Bhagavata Purana- नाश्वात पथ्यमेवान्र॑ व्याधयोभिभवाभि

The importance of Pathya is told.

पुजयेदशनं नित्यमद्याचैतकुत्स्ययन । (Manu Samriti)

One should respect the food every day and one should not criticize it.

Manu Samriti

नभुज्जितोदघुतस्नेहं नातिसौहितमाचरेत  नतिपगेनतिसार्यन सायं प्रातरशित ॥ 

Manu says that food should not be taken without Ghrita and Taila and should not over food; one should not eat food before sunrise, or after sunset and also not eat in Sandhya Kala. If somebody has taken Guru Bhojana (heavy food) at noon, he should not eat in the Sanya Kaala (evening).

Vishnu Purana

जठरं पुरण्येदर्धमन्नै जलेनच  वायोसंचरणार्यायचतुर्थभवशेषयेत 

One should take half part of the stomach with solid foods, one-fourth part with liquid and the remaining one-fourth parts should be kept empty for Vata. 

In Bhagavat Geeta, the description of Satvika, Rajasika, Tamasika Ahara.

Bhagvata Geeta 17/ 8


आयुः सत्व बलारोग्य सुखप्रितिवि वर्धना: रस्या: । स्निग्धा: स्थिरा: हद्या आहारा सात्विकप्रिया: ।

Bhagvata Geeta 17/ 9


कटवाम्ललवणात्युष्णाति क्षार तक्ष विदाहिन: । आहार राजस स्येष्टा दुःख शोका भयप्रदा॥

Bhagvata Geeta 17/ 10


नामसिक: यात यामगतर संपुत्ति पर्युषितंचव्यत । ऊच्छिप्टम्पिचा मेध्यं भोजनतानम प्रियम॥

In Great Hindu mythology, Ramayana, diet has been classified into two types:

  • Satvika 
  • Tamasika

Vachaspatyam – आहियतेइत्याहार means to be swallowed is called Ahara.

Anna is a popular and widely used synonym of Ahara. The word Anna means “to be taken in” or “which nourishes the body”.

आहियत इत्याहारो भेषजमपि ।

(Charaka Samhita. Sutra Sthana. 6/ 85, Chakrapani commentary)

While commenting on the description of Ahita, Chakrapani has said that Ahara means which is ingested and thus it includes in itself both diet and drugs.

जिव्हा ह्यहरणं आहार

(Charaka Samhita Sutra Sthana. 11/ 15, Gangadhra Commentary)

Which is ingested by the tongue down to the throat and is called Ahara.

Annamaya Kosha is made up of inert matter and it later goes back into the mud again.

Pranamaya Kosha

तैत्तिरिय उपनिषद 2: 2

तस्माद वा एतस्मादन्नरससमयात | अन्यो अन्तर आत्मा प्राणामयः 

Pranamaya Kosha is the second layer of our personality. The word Prana means source of energy. Every physical activity needs energy. Our vital functions which the Prana primarily governs are breathing, heartbeats, circulation, digestion, etc. Taittiriya Upanishad explains that this layer of our personality is almost like the soul of the Annamaya Kosha. It is because of this Prana that we live. Prana according to its Sthiti (location), Gati (movement), and Udeshya (purpose) has been divided into five major and five minor components. Yogic literature mentions the presence of 72,000 pathways along which the Prana moves in the human body. The Kshana (moment) Prana leaves the Sharira (body) all activities come to an end.

The five Pranas described in Ayurveda as a physiological system, represent the fundamental Pranamaya Sheath. The 5 Pranas that contain this Pranamaya sheath are described below: 

Sense of Perception (Prana): Prana controls the five types of stimuli received from the outer environment through Panch Indriya (five sense organs) of Sharira (human body). 

Sense of Emission (Apana): All types of Mala i.e wastes like urine feces etc. of our Sharira (body) that are rejected from our Sharira are called Apana. 

Sense of Digestion (Samana): It controls the Pachana Sansthana (digestive system) of our stomach. 

Sense of Circulation (Vyana): Vyana is the natural way in which all the Poshaka Tatva (nutrition of food) eaten by us is gone through the various parts of our body through the Rakta Vaha Strotasa (bloodstream). 

Sense of Assessment (Udana): Udana is a sense of a person raising his Vichara (thoughts) to the Uccha Ansha (higher level) to visualize the possibility of new development or creation of an idea.

Manomaya Kosha

तैत्तिरिय उपनिषद 2: 3

तस्माद वा एतस्मात प्राणमया। अन्यो अन्तर आत्मा मनोमय:

Taittiriya Upanishad states that the soul of Pranamaya Kosha is Manomaya Kosha. Manomaya Kosha is that layer of our personality that we call as mind (Citta). The Sheath of Manomaya Kosha deals with the Mansika i.e., the mental or perceptual/ emotional part of the body, which comprises not just the mind, but also the organs within the Sharira (body). The Manomaya Kosha of our body always influences the Prana Kosha and channels the ways we think. When Prana or life and Anna or food operate together, Mana or awareness does not exist, because we do not think or feel anything else. The thoughts that originate within the body during the first sheaths can manifest themselves in the form of a disease that affects the body. All the diseases that involve the Manomaya Kosha can be treated by the Yoganga that has been prescribed through Ashtanga Yoga.

According to Ayurveda and Yoga, the seat of most diseases is Manomaya Kosha. With the interaction of the world, the mind is getting afflicted in many ways and the continued worries and stresses are percolating through the Annamaya Kosha or the Physical body gradually. This induces unwanted chemical changes in the body, and it also affects the central nervous system in a wrong manner.

The Brahmari Pranayama, Nadanusanda practices, Meditations, and hearing/ chanting devotional music are the remedial means in the Yoga to attune the Manomaya Kosha.

10 ethical principles of Raja Yoga are used to have controlled and healthy Manomaya Kosha i.e.

  • Non-violence
  • Discipline
  • Purity of thoughts
  • Giving
  • Understanding
  • Truthfulness
  • Non- stealing
  • Non- accumulation
  • Practicing Holy Scriptures
  • Devotion to God

Vijnanamaya Kosha

तैत्तिरिय उपनिषद 2: 4

तस्माद वा एतस्मात मनोमयात। अन्यो अन्तर आत्मा विज्ञानमय:

The Upanishad reveals that the self of Manimaya is Vijnanamaya. Vijnanamaya means composed of the faculty which discriminates, or intellect or Vijnana or determines or wills. Vijnanamaya Kosha is the sheath composed of more intellect, associated with the organs of perception. This level is that of Gyana (knowledge). Knowledge is our understanding and appreciation of the fundamentals of life, the real source of joy and happiness, the reality of things outside, etc. we undertake a lot of analysis at this level and finally discriminate what is right and wrong. Vijnanamaya Kosha is dealing with the present i.e., here and now.

Yogic counseling, the study of scriptures, and acquaintance with the vice and virtuous people are the means to strengthen Vijnanamaya Kosha.

Anandamaya Kosha

तैत्तिरिय उपनिषद 2: 5

तस्माद वा एतस्मात विज्ञान मयात। अन्यो अन्तर आत्मा आनंदमय:।।

Anandamaya Kosha is the soul of Vijnanamaya Kosha. This forms the last layer; Ananda refers to the bliss that a human can experience from any channel. Hence, the Anandamaya Kosha can be described as the transcendental body or the blissful body which in turn consists of the causal body of the Brahma. Since the self is the cause of all things, everything gets dissolved into it. Things are born, they grow and then they eventually die all because of Ananda. This shows that Ananda is the root of all human life.

Hence, Ananda is the incarnation or a form of Brahma. This Ananda comes from Brahma. It is our ignorance that covers bliss, just like how the skin covers the body. This is one of the Koshas that is not bound by either time or space. In the Yogic context, deep meditation, the state of Samadhi, and doing virtual deeds are the means for the Anandamaya Kosha.

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Classification of Panchakosha

Pancha Kosha is divided into three bodies:

  • Sthula Sharira (The gross body): The gross body (Sthula Sharira) consists of Annamayakosha.
  • Shukshama Sharira (The subtle body): the subtle body i.e Sukshma Sharira is made up of the subtle body i.e Pranamaya Kosha, the perceptual body i.e Manomaya Kosha, and the conscious body i.e Vigyanamaya Kosha.
  • Karana Sharira (The causal body): The causal body is the transcendental body i.e Ananda Maya Kosha.

Pancha Kosha theory related to Vyaktitva/ Prakriti (personality of an individual)

Vyaktitva / Prakriti (Personality) refers to the pattern of feelings, social adjustments, thoughts, and behaviors consistently exhibited by individuals over time that strongly influences their expectations, values, self-perception, and attitudes. Personality also predicts human reactions to other people, stress, problems, diseases, etc. Today various theories related to personalities are mentioned by different countries. Various famous theories for personality identifications are like Triguna theory, etc. but the concepts of Prakriti / Vyaktitava (personality) developed in the Upanishads i.e., Pancha Kosha theory is the oldest, fully proven, and has an intrinsic method to achieve happiness and disease – free life. The Pancha Kosha theory is the theory of personality, in which each Kosha represents a different human personality by its unique characteristics. As per Sriwastva 2012, in Taittiriya Upnasidha, the model of personality given in the ancient time consisted of five sheaths i.e. food sheath-  Annamaya, vital air sheath- Pranamaya, mental sheath- Manomaya, intellectual sheath – Vijnanamaya, and bliss sheath – Anandamaya. 

Annamaya Kosha – A Purusha (person) who resided predominantly in the Annamaya Kosha i.e food sheath believes that he is only the physical body (Sharirika). Such people give more importance to physical things (Bhoutika Samagri) and are attached to and consumed solely by the physical form. Such persons are good sportsmen and love physical fitness programs like sports, games, aerobics, bodybuilding, physical comfort, karate, food, dress, etc.

Pranamaya Kosha – A person who experiences Pranamaya Kosha predominantly gives importance to Physical exercise and meditation. People experiencing Pranamaya Kosha are more energetic and active. They can finish their work properly.

Manomaya Kosha – The person residing in Manomaya Kosha predominantly has thoughts and desires which identity with name, position, form, and qualities. Such kinds of people are very emotional. This person is void of any discrimination and lacks the cognitive abilities of reasoning but may have a keen appreciation for fine music, arts, drama, and dance.

Vigyanamaya Kosha – The person residing predominantly in Vigyanamaya Kosha is wise, knowledgeable, creative, loves literature, and are good orator. Vigyanamaya Kosha is the wisdom that lies beneath the processing and thinking aspect of the brain. Such kind of people discriminate between the information he processes, are very innovative, make good decisions, and have good judgment. These kinds of people are involved in discovery, research, and management areas.

Anandamaya Kosha – Persons residing predominantly in Anandamaya Kosha are firm in their decision, stable in behavior, happy in every state and aspect of Jeevan (life) and appreciate higher order of things and thinking like prayers, meditation connection with God, nature, etc. These types of Purusha (people) are self-realized persons.

The characteristic of different Kosha is given and according to that a Purusha (person) having consciousness of the specific Kosha would exhibit characteristics of the respective Kosha. For example, if the person has consciousness regarding Manomaya Kosha then he will increase his willpower to act. Below is given a list of characteristics of Panchkosha:

Annamaya Kosha

Characteristic – Inertia

Quality – Passivity

Shakti – Avarana Shakti

Power / energy – Unconsciousness

Pranamaya Kosha

Characteristic – Movement

Quality – Activity

Shakti – Kriya Shakti

Power / energy – Activity

Manomaya Kosha

Characteristic – Passive knowledge

Quality – Knowledge

Shakti – Icchya Shakti

Power / energy – Will power

Vigyana Maya Kosha

Characteristic – Acquisition of Knowledge, Decision-making

Quality – Ego, intellect

Shakti – Gyana Shakti

Power / energy – Wisdom

Anandamaya Kosha

Characteristic – Intuition, Idea generation

Quality – Happiness

Shakti – Bhoga Shakti

Power / energy – Blissful, pleasure, joy

Effects of Disturbance of Pancha Kosha

As per Yogic classical texts, whenever disturbance or imbalance starts it starts in Annamaya Kosha or Manomaya Kosha which will be in the form of strong dislikes or likes. Due to these mental activities in the body are disturbed and when this becomes uncontrollable this disturbance is located in Pranamaya Kosha. The haphazard flow of Nadis and Prana occurs as a result of this Pranamaya Kosha that again further acts on Annamaya Kosha. Due to this in Annamaya kosha Faulty digestion (Ajeerna Tvam) or over digestion (Athijeevanam) occurs and that ultimately results in some form of disease or disease symptoms. Another set of the chain reaction of disturbance in sheaths results in disturbance in Manomaya Kosha which ultimately disturbed the knowledge and intellect of the individual which results in people failing to take the right decision at the right time and ending up with the problem, loss of Ananda (bliss) and leads to various mental disturbances like stress, anxiety, depression, etc which again led to various physiological disorders.

Health Precepts of Pancha Kosha

Recently all medical systems acknowledged that more than 80% of the diseases of today, including diabetes (type II), cancer, peptic ulcer, arthritis, digestive disorders like Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, IBS, etc. are somatic diseases (Adhija Vyadhi) or the diseases caused by the mind. By balancing and harmonizing the mind through various practices and techniques it is proven that Yoga can cure most of all ailments. In this connection the quotation, for those wounded by civilization, yoga is the most healing salve” is worthwhile. Yoga explains this phenomenon in such a way that, with the interaction of worldly affairs the mind (Manomaya Kosha) is getting disturbed by jealousy, hatred, worries, dissatisfaction, confusion, etc. If this state of disturbance is continued for a long period, the same percolates to the physical body in the form of diseases. Similarly, unfavorable physical conditions affect the mind adversely and in course of time in return, it reflects in the body as a kind of ailment. From this fundamental theory on Koshas and diseases, the importance of keeping all Koshas healthy and balanced is evident. Since the body-mind relation or Annamaya Kohsa and Manomaya Kosha relation are very strong it has to be seen as the two sides of a coin, having no individual existence; the disturbance in one immediately affects the other. As breathing (Pranamaya Kosha) is the bridge between the body and mind, Pranamaya Kosha has also a vital role in this scenario. Again, since the intellect or Budhi (Viinanamaya Kosha) governs the mind through the thought process, Vijnanamaya is also responsible for diseases in the body. Finally, being Ananda or bliss’s original state, the Anandamaya Kosha is also a part of the total health of a human being.

Health precepts of Anamaya Kosha

Annamaya Kosha is a physical body, gross. 

Inclusion of Annamaya Kosha- Annamaya Kosha consists of five organs of perception i.e Pancha Gyanaindriya and five organs of action i.e Pancha Karma Indriyana.

How Anamaya Kosha helps us maintain Swasthya (Health) or how to strengthen the Anamaya Kosha: 

Anamaya Kosha of the body can be rendered healthy by different means of treatment like:-

  • Aushadha (drugs)
  • Ahara (Food)
  • Upavasa (Fasting)
  • Asanas (physical postures)
  • Shuddhi kriyas (Six cleansing techniques)
  • Tattva Shuddhi (Inner purification)
  • Tapas (Practice of austerity), etc.

Shuddhi Kriyas: By doing Shodhana Kriya, it activates and revitalizes the organs and tones up their functions.

Yoga Asanas: Asana brings a state of deep relaxation, and mental calmness and revitalizes the body.

Aahra: Aahara is one of the most important Chikitsa in Ayurveda. A pure diet provides three levels of nutrition i.e., Sharirika (physical), Mansika (mental), and Atmika (spiritual) level of nourishment. The Panchamahabhutha i.e the five elements, mental impressions, Triguna i.e Satwa, Rajas, Tamas, and Sensory impressions all dependent on Ahara we consume.

Aushadha: Aushadha (Herbs) carry healing energies to keep the human body system in balance. Special herbs can help in Shodhana (detoxifying the body). Herbs affect the mind more directly than Aahara (food) as they work by Virya. Herbs work as cleansing agents as well as for nutritive purposes.

Abhyanga: Massage is an important Ayurvedic therapy not only for Sharirika (physical) but also for Mansika (psychological conditions).

Pancha karma (Vamana, Virechana, Vasthi, Nasya, and Rakthamokshana): The five main treatment modalities of Ayurveda for physical purification i.e Panchkarma penetrates deep into the Nadivana Sansthan (nervous system), so it can also be helpful for psychological benefits.

Annamaya Kosha – Development and nourishment

For the development of Anamaya Kosha- A proper diet should be followed i.e individuals have to take care of Pathya and Apathya (wholesome and unwholesome) along with taking care of how to take food or must follow food etiquette. 

Proper methods of intake of food / Eating Etiquette as per Ayurvedic classical texts:

तत्रेदा आहार विधि विधानम रोगाणांचापिकेषाश्चित काले प्रकृत्यैवहिततमंभुज्ञाना भवति- उष्णं, स्निग्धं मात्रावत जीर्णे वीर्याविरुद्धम इष्टे देशे इष्ट सर्वोपकरणं नाति द्रुतं नातिविलम्बितम अजल्पन्‌ अहसन्‌ तन्मना भुञ्ज्जित, आत्मानमभि समीक्ष्यसम्यक ।

(Charaka Samhita Vimana Sthana, 1/ 24)

As per Ayurvedic classical texts, one should eat only that Aahara (food) which is:-

  • Ushna (Warm)
  • Snigdha (Unctuous)
  • Matravata (In proper quantity)
  • Jeerna Ahara (After the digestion of the previous meal)
  • Viruddha Ahara (Not contradictory in potency)
  • Ishta Desha and Ishtarvapakarana (In the proper place equipped with all the accessories)
  • Naati Drutam (not very fast)
  • Naati Vilambnam (not very slow)
  • Ajalpnm (Without talking)
  • Ahasnm (Without laughing)
  • Tanmana Bhunjjitam (With the concentration of mind)
  • Aatamna Abhisamikshya (With paying due regard to oneself)

काले सात्म्यं शुचि हित॑ स्निग्धोष्ण॑ लघु तन्मनाः || षड़ रसं मधुरप्रायं नाति द्रुतम विलम्बितम्‌ । स्नातः क्षुद्वान्‌ विविक्तस्थो धौतपादकराननः || तर्पयित्वा पित्तरन्‌ देवानतिथीन्‌ बालकान्‌ गुरून्‌ । प्रत्यवेक्ष्य तिर श्चौ अपि प्रतिपन्नपरिग्रहान || समीक्ष्य सम्यगात्मानम निन्द ब्रुवन द्रवम्‌ । इष्ट मिष्टैः सहाश्नीयाच्छुचिभक्तजनाहतम्‌ ||

(Ashtanga Hridya Sutra Sthana. 8/ 35- 38)
  • The food should be taken at the proper time only.
  • It should be habituated, clean.
  • Food should be wholesome, unctuous, hot, and light.
  • Have food with a pleasant mind.
  • It should contain all six tastes, especially sweet.
  • Food should be consumed neither too fast nor too slow.
  • One should take food after having a bath, and whenever he feels hungry only.
  • Privacy is essential while taking food.
  • Wash hands, feet, and mouth before taking food.

A proper diet must consist of Satvik Bhojan like Shakahari Bhojana (vegetarian food) which endows nourishment to one’s body in the best way. Satvika Bhojana gives the Aantrika Bala (inner strength) and also passes the energy all around the body. 

If an individual consumes the Tamsik diet which consists of food like Mans (meat), and Madya (alcohol), it weakens the person’s Antrika Bala (inner strength) and also passes the negative energy to the body and among the people all around. 

Thus, Annamaya Kosha can be developed and nourished by:
  • Correcting the usual eating habits
  • Consuming the right kind of food
  • Doing physical exercises like walking, running, Yogic asanas, etc.

Pancha Kosha theory

Health percepts of Pranamaya Kosha

  • Pranamaya Kosha is the energy sheath. 
  • Pranamaya Kosha corresponds to the Kriya Sharira (physiology) of the human system. Through the practice of Pranayama, Shodhana Kriya, and proper breathing we can correct the Asatmayta (imbalances) of Pranamaya Kosha. 
  • Pranayama corrects the functional imbalance like tremors, hypertension, haphazard breathing, palpitation, hypersensitive reaction, autoimmune reaction, and overactivity.
  • Acupuncture works on Pranamaya kosha. In the marvelous healing science of acupuncture, meridians (the energy channels) are manipulated to bring about a change of energy flow and as a result removal of Vyadhi (disease) and attainment of Swasthya (better health). These meridians i.e energy channels, conduct ki or chi energy.

Pranamaya Kosha – Development and Nourishment

For achieving the aim of Swasthsya Swasthya Rakshnam i.e to maintain individual health it is very important to control and direct the Prana. Before moving to the level of physique the health problems start with the level of energy as per Ayurveda and along with this, we now know that Pranamaya Kosha is refined through means of Vayu (air) and food (Bhojan) which people breathe and eat. The Antra (intestine) supplies the nutrition of food to Prana Kosha and the lungs supply the essence of air to the Prana Kosha. Thus, Prana consequently refines our body and mind. We can nourish and develop Pranamaya Kosha by

  • Practicing various breathing exercises like Pranayama which advance the excellence of Pranamaya Kosha. 
  • By being aware of breathing, we should practice Asana.
  • Spending more time with activities or with people that keep our positive energy high or spirits high. 
  • Practicing silence 
  • Chanting soothing mantras
  • Meditation 

Health percepts of Manomaya Kosha

  • The Manomaya kosha is directly operated through the culturing of the mind by focusing the Dharana (mind) initially after that relaxed dwelling of the mind in a Dhyana (single thought) for a longer duration leading ultimately to Samadhi (super consciousness) (Samadhi).
  • Manomaya Kosha of the body can be rendered healthy by aroma therapies of Ayurveda such as Gandha Mala Dharana (wearing of aromatic garlands) and Dhupana (Fumigation) through supplementary therapy of Ayurveda, which is used mainly for treating the mind. 
  • Aroma therapy (Sugandhit Chiktsa) has great power to calm, stimulate or heal the mind. Aromatherapy aids in concentration and meditation. Aroma therapy strengthens the immune system and soothes nerves. 
  • Ratna Dharanam (Gems therapy) mentioned in Ayurveda has immense importance for the maintenance of Harshanam, Vyasanasoodanam i.e mental well-being. Ratna and Upratna can be used long-term to protect and vitalize the Sharira and Mana (body and mind). The Dhatu, Updhatu, Ratna, and Upratna (mineral and gem) preparations mentioned in Ayurvedic classical texts are often used for conditions involving the mind and nervous system. Dhatus and Updhatus (Metals and minerals) have a stronger action upon the mind than Aushadha Dravya (herbs). Sudation therapy (Swedana) aids in the Shudhikarana (purification) of the Kosha.

Manomaya Kosha – Development and Nourishment

By developing Manomaya Kosha, the mental health of the individual can be improved. 

The ideal nourishment for the Manomaya Kosha or the mind is:

  • Soothing atmosphere
  • Good relationships
  • Interesting profession
  • Healthy and funny environment
  • Meditation 
  • Routine introspection provides better energy to the mind. 
  • Soothing Mantras should be chanted every day, for the proper functioning of the Kosha these Mantras work as the mental vehicle. 

For the advancement of Manomaya Kosha, one should read literature, good books, tales from ancient sources, and all other related sources. Thus, a healthy harmonious environment may positively influence the sensory world, practicing silence, spending less time with those Kriya (activities) which disturb or releases negative energy, meditating and chanting Mantras, reading motivational and value-based literature, practicing good intentions and transforming negative energy into positive energy helps to nourish and developed Manomaya Kosha.

Health percepts of Vijnanamaya Kosha

  • Vijnanamaya kosha with the Acquisition of Knowledge continuously guides the Manomaya Kosha to get mastery over the basic instincts present in the individual.
  • To eliminate the entire stress and to unravel the real self, the removal of ignorance is required. 
  • Psychotherapy, spiritual discourses, counseling, and health awareness programs seem to be acting on Vijnanamaya Kosha.

Vijnanamaya Kosha – Development and nourishment

Manomaya Kosha is developed and nourished by meditation and yoga in the same way Vigyan Maya Kosha can be developed by practicing meditation and Yoga asanas. Other activities include in developing Vijnanamaya Kosha are

  • Debates
  • Analytical tasks
  • Project making
  • Reviewing of books
  • Interviewing renowned personalities. 
  • As Vijnana Maya Kosha is hidden within and inherent, we need to release the Kosha.
  • Refinement of Vigyaanmaya Kosha is done by riding on the wings of Vairagya i.e detachment and Viveka i.e wisdom.
  • Icchashakti (willpower), Gyaanshakti (power of intellect), and Kriyashakti (passion for work) are required to be realized for further development of Vijnana Maya Kosha.
  • Sattvic food, meditation, a healthy environment, and good intention also help in developing this Kosha. 

The Vigyaanmaya Kosha is when nourished and developed the special powers of the body starts working like he becomes more telepathic, becomes powerful in reading other Vichaara (thoughts), and acquires the power to influence them. On the development of Vijnanamaya Kosha, an individual becomes a healer where even their words may cure many problems and even Vyadhi (diseases).

Health percepts of Anandamaya Kosha

The bliss layer of our existence is Anandamaya Kosha, and this Kosha is devoid of any form of emotions. The causal level of Shodhana (detoxification) is possible through Satwic mantras like ‘aum’, which acts against the Mansika Dosha. Ayurveda uses Mantra therapy to correct the Mansika Vyadhis (psychological and psychic disorders). Those Mantras clear impurities from the Nadis and aid in the creative thinking and concentration of an individual. 

Awakening of Ananadamaya Kosha

After realizing or developing the other four sheaths i.e Anamaya, Pranamaya, Manomaya, Vijnanamaya, and with the devotion and belief in God, the Anandamaya Kosha is reached. True knowledge or wisdom gradually helps in developing Anandamaya Kosha. 

The awakening of Anandmaya Kosha can be done by:

  • Seva i.e., selfless service where an individual can empathize with other beings
  • Bhakti i.e., devotion to God. Regular practice of bhakti unites the Hridya (heart) with all other divine beings. 
  • Samadhi i.e, the deep meditation or Yoga Nidra opens our heart to one’s divine being which resides in us and our Aatma.

Pancha Kosha, associated disorders, and interventions

Pancha KoshaAssociated disordersIntervention
Annamaya KoshaDigestive disordersVarious Asanas like Vajra Asana, Bhujanagasana, and Padmasana and their modifications are practiced along with Anuloma, Viloma, Nadi Shodhana, etc. 
Pranamaya KoshaRespiratory disorders and cardiac disordersOm Chanting along with various Asanas like Vajra Asana, Simha Asana, Paschimouttana Asana, Nadi Shodhana, Surya Namskara, Ujjayi Pranayama, etc.
Manomaya KoshaPsychological, mental, and endocrine disordersMeditation, Nadi Shodhana, Relaxative and cultural Asana.
Vijanamaya KoshaPsychological, mental, endocrine disorders, and various other disordersDeep Breathing, Kumbhaka (Retention), Meditation, Dharana, and Pratyahara Yogic practice
Anandamaya KoshaVarious disorders hinder the overall expansion of energy, life, happiness, etcThe rectification of disorders related to Manomaya, Anamaya Kosha, etc leads to proper channelizing of Anandamaya Kosha.Practice or intervention mentioned to various Koshas are used as per the identification of cases for Anadmaya Kosha.

Recent Research on Pancha Kosha Theory

  • Satpathy, Biswajit. (2018). Pancha Kosha Theory of Personality. The International Journal of Indian Psychology. 6. 10. 25215/ 0602. 105.
  • Mishra, Yagnik. (2019). CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF PANCHAKOSHA THEORY OF YOGA PHILOSOPHY. World Journal of Pharmaceutical Research. 8. 413. 10. 20959/ wjpr 201913- 16152.
  • Mohanty S, Singh A, Avi P. Integrative Medicine as a Pan- pharmacon for COVID-19 Pandemic: A Call for Global Advocacy. Ann Neuroscience. 2021 Jan; 28 (1- 2): 8- 10. doi: 10. 1177/ 0972753120950052. Epub 2020 Aug 27. PMID: 34733048; PMCID: PMC 8558987.
  • Sathiyaseelan, Anuradha & Balasundaram, Sathiyaseelan. (2016). A Comparison of Maslow’s Theory of Hierarchy of Needs with the Pancha Kosha Theory of Upanishads. Artha – Journal of Social Sciences. 15. 10. 12724/as. 36. 4.
  • Bhargav, Hemant & Kaushik, Preeti & Raghuram, Nagarathna & Govindaraj, Ramajayam. (2021). Yoga in Health Care-Introduction to Yoga.
  • Hauser, Beatrix. (2021). The health imagination of postural yoga. Anthropology & Medicine. 28. 1- 23. 10. 1080/ 13648470. 2021. 1949962.
  • Srivathsan, K.R. (2004). The ‘I’ in it is a Pancha kosha view. Global Journal of Flexible Systems Management. 5. 13- 26.
  • Büssing A, Michalsen A, Khalsa SB, Telles S, Sherman KJ. Effects of yoga on mental and physical health: a summary of reviews. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2012; 2012: 165410. doi: 10. 1155/ 2012/ 165410. Epub 2012 Sep 13. PMID: 23008738; PMCID: PMC 3447533.
  • De Michelis, Elizabeth. (2007). A Preliminary Survey of Modern Yoga Studies. Asian Medicine. 3. 1- 19. 10. 1163/ 157342107X207182.
  • Sahni, Pooja. (2014). Panchkosha Model of Human Consciousness and Sukha-Dukha – An Indian Philosophical Perspective.
  • Sharma, Subhash. (2020). Models of Human Beings: Indian Perspectives and Implications for Indian Management.
  • Naknek, Ivan. (2020). Aspects of Self-Awareness in Meditators and Meditation-Naive Participants: Self-Report Versus Task Performance. Mindfulness. 11. 10. 1007/ s12671- 020-01318-5.
  • Gothe, Neha & Khan, Imadh & Hayes, Jessica & Erlenbach, Emily & Damoiseaux, Jessica. (2019). Yoga Effects on Brain Health: A Systematic Review of the Current Literature. Brain Plasticity. 5. 1-17. 10. 3233/ BPL- 190084.
  • Gothe, Neha & Khan, Imadh & Hayes, Jessica & Erlenbach, Emily & Damoiseaux, Jessica. (2019). Yoga Effects on Brain Health: A Systematic Review of the Current Literature. Brain Plasticity. 5. 1- 17. 10. 3233/ BPL- 190084.
  • Rocha, K & Ribeiro, Alessandra & Rocha, K & Sousa, Maria & Albuquerque, F & Ribeiro, Sidarta & Silva, Regina. (2012). Improvement in physiological and psychological parameters after 6 months of yoga practice. Consciousness and cognition. 21. 843- 50. 10. 1016/ j. concog. 2012. 01. 014.
  • Rathi, Sunanda Surendra, Nagarathna Raghuram, Padmini Tekur, Ruchira Rupesh Joshi, and Nagendra Hongasandra Ramarao. “Development and validation of an integrated yoga module for obesity in adolescents.” International journal of yoga 11, no. 3 (2018): 231.
  • Bhavanani, Ananda Balayogi. “Yoga Chikitsa: The application of Yoga as a therapy.” Pondicherry, India: Dhivyananda Creations 2 (2013).
  • Chatterjee, Sridip, and Puneet Bhattacharya. “Cardiometabolic Syndrome and Effects of Yoga.” In The Principles and Practice of Yoga in Cardiovascular Medicine, pp. 167- 195. Springer, Singapore, 2022.
  • Kumar, Narottam & Singh, Udham & Kumar, Devesh. (2022). Yoga and modern medicine-A brief communication about the need for yoga in daily life. 3. 94- 101.
  • Atkinson, Nancy & Permuth-Levine, Rachel. (2009). Benefits, Barriers, and Cues to Action of Yoga Practice: A Focus Group Approach. American journal of health behavior. 33. 3- 14. 10. 5993/ AJHB. 33. 1. 1.
  • Kishore, Ram & PAL, RAMESWAR. (2018). Yogic View of Diabetes and its Management. 4.
  • Chaturvedi, Ramesh Kumar, Vishal Verma, and Kushendra Mishra. “Differential effect of pre and post cognitive skills training program: a study on healthy young children.” Smart Learning Environments 9, no. 1 (2022): 1-19.
  • Mani, TL Alaka, Manoj Kumar Sharma, S. N. Omkar, and H. R. Nagendra. “Holistic assessment of anger in adolescents–Development of a rating scale.” Journal of Ayurveda and integrative medicine 9, no. 3 (2018): 195- 200.
  • Chatterjee, Tanima, and R. P. Banerjee. “Enhancing Self Autonomy Through Correcting Aberrations in Mental Health Problems to Maximize Individual and Group Energy in Work Output.” In International Conference on Global Innovation and Trends in Economics and Business (ICOBIS 2022), pp. 125- 134. Atlantis Press, 2022.
  • Ugale, Chaitanya C., Sanjay D. Singh, and Paran Gowda. “YOGA SCIENCE-BASED ACTION-OUTCOMES OUTLINE’.” Journal of Ayurveda and Integrated Medical Sciences 3, no. 6 (2018): 97- 104.
  • Chatterjee, Sridip, and Puneet Bhattacharya. “Cardiometabolic Syndrome and Effects of Yoga.” In The Principles and Practice of Yoga in Cardiovascular Medicine, pp. 167-195. Springer, Singapore, 2022.
  • Bhide, Shree Raksha, Hemant Bhargav, Bangalore N. Gangadhar, and Geetha Desai. “Exploring the Therapeutic Potential of Yoga Philosophy: A Perspective on the Need for Yoga-Based Counseling Program (YBCP) in Common Mental Disorders.” Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine (2021): 02537176211051987.
  • Chatterjee, Tanima, and R. P. Banerjee. “Enhancing Self Autonomy Through Correcting Aberrations in Mental Health Problems to Maximize Individual and Group Energy in Work Output.” In International Conference on Global Innovation and Trends in Economics and Business (ICOBIS 2022), pp. 125-134. Atlantis Press, 2022.
  • Mani, TL Alaka, Manoj Kumar Sharma, S. N. Omkar, and H. R. Nagendra. “Holistic assessment of anger in adolescents–Development of a rating scale.” Journal of Ayurveda and integrative medicine 9, no. 3 (2018): 195- 200.
  • Bhide, Shree Raksha, Hemant Bhargav, Bangalore N. Gangadhar, and Geetha Desai. “Exploring the Therapeutic Potential of Yoga Philosophy: A Perspective on the Need for Yoga-Based Counseling Program (YBCP) in Common Mental Disorders.” Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine (2021): 02537176211051987.
  • Mani, TL Alaka, Manoj Kumar Sharma, S. N. Omkar, and H. R. Nagendra. “Holistic assessment of anger in adolescents–Development of a rating scale.” Journal of Ayurveda and integrative medicine 9, no. 3 (2018): 195- 200.
  • Banth, Sudha & Talwar, Charu. (2010). Anasakti, the Hindu Ideal, and its Relationship to Well-Being and Orientations to Happiness. Journal of religion and health. 51. 934- 46. 10.1007/ s10943- 010- 9402- 3.
  • Braach-Maksvytis, Vijoleta. (2019). INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF NEUROPSYCHOTHERAPY the official journal of THE INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF APPLIED NEUROSCIENCE. 10. 12744/ ijnpt. 2019. 011- 022.
  • Satsangi, Anirudh Kumar. (2014). MEASUREMENT OF SPIRITUAL QUOTIENT AND EMOTIONAL QUOTIENT. Inquisitive Teacher ISSN – 2348 – 3717. Vol. 1. 158- 160.
  • Bhagat, om. (2018). Yogic Concepts of Holistic Health and Wellness. Journal of Advanced Research in Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha & Homeopathy. 05. 15- 18. 10. 24321/ 2394. 6547. 201805.
  • Kumar, Narottam & Singh, Udham. (2022). Role of yoga and meditation practice on metacognition: Addressing through Panchkosha. 9. 73- 82.
  • Verma MR, Rao RD, Langade D, Jain AK, Guha A, Mohan M. Assessment of yogic relaxation techniques for its anxiolytic effects in patients requiring endodontic treatment: A prospective, randomized controlled study. J Conserv Dent. 2021 Mar-Apr; 24 (2): 209- 213. doi: 10. 4103/ jcd. jcd_ 97_ 21. Epub 2021 Oct 9. PMID: 34759592; PMCID: PMC 8562829.
  • Sahni PS, Singh K, Sharma N, Garg R. Yoga an effective strategy for self-management of stress-related problems and wellbeing during COVID-19 lockdown: A cross-sectional study. PLoS One. 2021 Feb 10; 16 (2): e0245214. doi: 10. 1371/ journal. pone. 0245214. PMID: 33566848; PMCID: PMC 7875402.


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Dr. Sahil Gupta completed his Bachelor of Ayurveda in Medicine and Surgery (B.A.M.S.) and Master’s Degree in Health Administration (MHA) India. He is Registered Ayurvedic Doctor & Vaidya in India having Registration No. 23780. He is the CEO and founder of IAFA. After completing BAMS, Dr. Sahil Gupta started practicing Ayruveda by giving prime importance to allergic disorders management. He became the first Ayurvedic doctor to cure Food Allergies through Ayurveda. Read More About Dr. Sahil Gupta.

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