A Beginner’s Guide to the Majja Dhatu
The word Majja means the pulp. In the context of Majja dhatu, it means the filling entity and here it fills the asthi (bones). It is the sara (essence) of asthi dhatu. The word ‘Majja’ has its origin from the Sanskrit, ‘Majjatiti Majja’. Asthisara, Asthiteja, Asthisneha are its synonyms. This is the sixth dhatu after asthi which nourishes the next dhatu called the shukra dhatu and hence the synonym called ‘Shukrakara’ is also given. This can be correlated with bone marrow in the contemporary practice of medicine.
Bhautika composition and its Guna (qualities)
It is made up of Jala Mahabhuta.
It has a resemblance with Mamsa dhatu in its appearance and smell. It possesses Madhura rasa (sweet taste), snigdha (unctuous property), and mrudu (smooth/soft) qualities.
Formation of Majja dhatu
The previous asthi dhatu with the help of majjadhatwagni and its poshaka component helps in the formation and nourishment of majja dhatu. The asthi dhatu and vata generate the pores in the bones and thus majja gets filled in it. Thus, Majja dhatu is formed which also gives rise to its byproducts and the waste metabolites.
Majjasaara purusha lakshana (Characteristics of an individual who has ideal Majja)
- The skin has luster, it is soft, smooth, and oily.
- The hair is scanty, oily in texture, dark black in color, and deep-rooted.
- Eyebrows and eyelashes are black and soft.
- Lips, tongue, and palate is unctuous.
- They have good intellect and live happily for a long life.
Seat of Majja Dhatu
Majja dhatu is circulated in the majjavaha srotas (transport system channels of majja dhatu) and originates from the asthi (bones) and sandhi (joints).
Duration taken to form Majja Dhatu
Majja dhatu is formed on the eighth day after the formation of Ahara rasa.
Quantity of Majja in our body
The quantity of majja dhatu is one Anjali in measurement.
Byproducts and the waste metabolites
The byproduct of majja dhatu is the kesha (hair); unctuous secretions of twak (skin), netra (eyes), and purisha (stools) are the waste metabolites.
Functions of Majja Dhatu
- Snehana karma – it does the oleation of the body, skin, eyes, hair, etc.
- Balakrita – It provides strength to the bones and the entire body.
- Shukra poshana – Since the shukra dhatu is formed from the majja dhatu and hence gets nourished.
- Asthi poorana – Asthi is filled with the majja dhatu (bone marrow).
Causes of Majja dhatu vitiation
The food that is incompatible, unhealthy, abhighata (trauma), prapidanata (crushed bones) vitiate the majja dhatu.
Majja vriddhi lakshana (increased Majja dhatu symptoms)
- Anga gaurava – heaviness in the body
- Netra gaurava – heaviness in the eyes
- Parwa sthoulya – clubbing of fingers
Majja kshaya lakshana (decreased Majja dhatu symptoms)
- Timira darshana – blurred vision
- Asthi sousheerya – porosis in the bones (condition of osteoporosis)
- Bhrama – vertigo
Diseases caused due to vitiation of Majja dhatu
Sandhi shoola – pain in the joints, Bhrama – vertigo, etc. are diseases caused due to the vitiation of majja dhatu.
Treatment for vitiated Majja dhatu
The treatment plan for the diseases of majja dhatu is in accordance with the Asthi dhatu. As asthi and majja dhatu are closely related to each other, Basti (enema therapy), foods that are sweet in taste, and unctuous in nature are administered if there is a decrease in majja dhatu. Tikta (bitter) and Kashaya (astringent) foods are given when the majja dhatu is increased. Physical exercise and proper daily and seasonal regimens are beneficial to treat disorders of majja dhatu.
The sixth dhatu in the sequence is the majja dhatu. It is nourished by asthi dhatu and nourishes the shukra dhatu. Jala is the predominant mahabhuta. It fills the bones with the help of vata dosha. It provides strength to the bones and other structures of the body, nourishes the shukra dhatu, and is responsible for the luster, oiliness, and softness of the skin and hair. Kesha is the upadhatu and the unctuous secretions of eyes, skin, and stools are its mala. Asthi and Sandhi are the origin of majja dhatu and are carried by majjavaha srotas. The heaviness of the body and the eyes are the increased majja dhatu symptoms. Osteoporosis, blurred vision, and vertigo are the symptoms of decreased majja dhatu.