Importance of studying Shaareera: Human Anatomy And Physiology

Article by Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay) and Dr Manasa, B.A.M.S
Shaareera is the study of anatomy and physiology of the body. It is important because of below reasons –
To know about the shape, structure and functions of the living human body and its components 

Shaareera, comprises of Rachana Shaareera (anatomy) and Kriya Shaareera (physiology). Therefore the first and foremost goal, intention or importance in studying Shaareera is to understand the body, its components, their structures, their numbers, their normal proportions, size, shape, mutual relationship and the functions they serve in the best possible way.

To know the factors of well being
Charaka further tells that ‘The factors responsible for the well-being of an individual can only be understood after having procured a comprehensive knowledge of Shaareera, which in turn is the study of Shareera’. Thus the importance of learning about Shaareera and its consequential knowledge helps in understanding the basic factors and proportions of the body and its components which are essential to keep the physical wellness at optimum levels. Only after knowing what are normal dimensions, mathematics  (anatomy) and chemistry (physiology) can we know about the disturbances (pathology) occurring in them, which in turn becomes the root secret of the medicine or ‘medicinal science’ (Ayurveda in this context). Knowing Shaareera helps one (physician) in handling the medical science in terms of 2 key motives:

Swasthasya Swasthya Rakshanam – Protection and maintenance of health in an already healthy individual and
Aaturasya Vikara Prashamanam – Combating and effectively treating and eradicating the diseases in the diseased
Read related: Shaareera: Ayurvedic Study Of Anatomy And Physiology

To enlighten the universe with the knowledge of Ayurveda
Acharya Charaka tells that each physician should possess comprehensive knowledge of Shareera, i.e. well versed in Shaareera Shastra. Only the physician who has a good knowledge of Shareera (body structure and functions), will be able to teach, preach and handle Ayurveda precision. Only he or she can help in giving to the world a true knowledge of Ayurveda in its right sense.

To achieve unparalleled success in medical science
All physicians want good proportion of success in medical practice. This doesn’t come easily without the physician having a thorough theoretical and practical knowledge of the medical science in its true terms. The foundation of comprehensive medical knowledge lay in comprehensive understanding of anatomy and physiology of the human body i.e. Shaareera Shastra.

Shaareera is a section which deals with the construction and working of human body. The knowledge of this science is needed for achieving important goals of the medical science, and for the prevention of diseases and treatment of diseases of the entire mankind and also for gaining unparalleled success as a physician in medical practice.

To understand Shareera, one among the ‘tripod of life’
Satwa (mind), Atma (soul or life element) and Shareera (living human body) are the tripods for the life and its existence in the universe. The entire universe is based on these 3 basic pillars or units of life. If they are well balanced, the life is steady and keeps going. If there is an imbalance in any of the 3 elements, there is a collapse and destruction of life. Shareera is one among the tripod of life and the knowledge of Shareera is obtained by Rachana Shaareera (study of construction of the body or anatomy of the human body) and Kriya Shaareera (functions of the human body or physiology of the human body), both of which constitute a science called Shaareera Tantra (comprehensive study of human body). So by understanding Shaareera we understand life and by understanding life, we in turn understand the modes and methods of keeping the life element in balance and in equilibrium such that each one of us enjoy a comprehensive health.

Shaareera, Kriya Shaareera in particular deals with ‘understanding manas and atma’ also and also with respect to their relationship with physical body.

Just Before Finishing
Thorough Knowledge of human body with respect to its anatomical and physiological aspects is essential for a physician to master over the medical science. Comprehensive treatment cannot be done without precise knowledge of the human body or shareera. This knowledge can be obtained only through elaborate study of Shaareera vignana. This article is also intended towards sharing the ancient knowledge of human anatomy and physiology as explained in Shaareera Sthanas of various treatises with our knowledge hungry readers!!
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