The earth element Print
Written by Ayurvéda portál   

 A föld elemWe continue our series of articles about the five main elements with the earth-element. According to the philosophy of Ayurveda we do not mean the land, the material as the earth-element, we define it much more widely. We use the same content from the article of fire-element to help you understand the nature of the earth element. 

The ayurvedic expression Pruthwi equals with the english expression earth element, but for simplicity I will use the term earth element in this article. Similar to other elements, the earth element has important aspects in the material world and also in consciousness. Its nature is defined by standard and contact of the three gunas (radzsasz, tamas, sattva). Let’s examine the earth element first in the aspect of gunas:

Similar to the other elements the earth element has minimal self-awareness function, its existence and function depends strongly on the other elements. It could not exist without the existence of the other elements in the creation process before it (ex.: without the gravitation connected to the water element our planet would be only a cloud of dust in the eter, but if I take into consideration that the atomic bonding carries the nature of the water element, even the cloud of dust would not exist). This way man could easily point out that in earth element the principle of sattva (light) only slightly exists. The mobility of earth element is irrelevant, it resists even the impacts of the other elements. This suggests that the principle of radzsaszs is very limited in the earth element (principium of mobility), and on the other hand it has a considerable quantity of the bound strength of tamas (dark principium). 

The spiritual land

In  spiritual aspect the earth element is a receiver element (the ability of reception is a dark principium, which shows well the dominance of tamas), it reflects man's strong confidence in harmonic respect, but in disharmonic respect it shows the slothfulness and inability to change of man. The controlled (harmonic) earth element is present in man if all the other elements are also balanced. It is easy to understand this, as too much water dissolve the earth (liquor, erosion, other symptoms), too little water vaporizes the earth (see desert), too much fire forms the earth first into water and after into air, too little fire forms the water and air into earth, so more earth will be produced (little mobility = weight-grow). Too much ether makes earth  fragmented and unstable, while too little ether do not ensure enough space for the earth element, so it’s density will grow (for example, who is afraid of expressing himself, denies the ether element, and is able to incerase his weight.). This also proves, that harmonic earth element exist only in a sattvic person. If somebody is calm and radiates confidence, it is because of the earth element, but if he is not harmonic with the other elements (because of fear), then this calm and confidence easily changes into its opposite. This is the reason why earth-type people carry anger further despite the fact that it is harder to make them angry.
The earth element provides ethical solidity for man, and combined with the receiver aspect of this element it leads to serious belief in God. This is the reason why most of the Kapha persons are believers. Thanks to the earth element the Kapha type of man is very reliable, but sometimes this reliability also means predictability, which is one of the disadvantages.
The main aspect of the earth element is the reception, which means, that this element is not able to move, change itself, only with the help of other elements. The earth type of person should also accept other people’s help if he would like to change himself, because the unability to forgiving effects mostly the earth type of people.
The uncontrolled earth (same as the uncontrolled type of all elements) is a destructive force in the consciousness and in the body. Man living with uncontrolled earth is not able to fit to the challenges of the quickly changing life, and he tries to set back his environment also (even if not consciously). Majority of this kind of people sponges off the society and they are dependent on the benevolence of others. Fears carried by them often helps them to be brought to a morsel of bread, and usually they do nothing to their own interest  referring to the desire for freedom (freedom equals with begging on the stairs of underpasses every day). Uncontrolled earth moves man towards incalculable spiritual states: depression, aggression, violence. The earth element is unconontrolled mostly in people who take advantage of their body superiority, and their strength.
Too much earth element strenghtens the desire for tenure, and the excessive attachment to the material world in man; too little earth element strengthens the aptitude for wastage and consciousness moved away from stable earth. The limitation of earth material is the fear from the material world; here comes the fears connected to survival: fear from hunger and thirst, gluttony, greed, fear from poverty and fear from richness, fear from enemy (this is an animal instinct: risen from the fear from higher animals), fear from death.

Physical land

Physically earth element means the firm elements of the body. Here comes the skeleton, teeth, musculature, but it can be found in the skin also. We can say that earth element forms the body, but it has only indirect role in the functionality. Different body functions (move, digestion, etc.) generated by the other elements. Little earth element causes muscular atrophy, osteoporosis and cavity for example, and a lot earth element causes different proliferations in the body such as bone growths, skin excrescences, tumours and other similar issues.
Possibly it is clear from the above statements that there is no bound form without the earth element, every existing, what can be described with formation contains earth element directly (ex: physical body), or indirectly (ex.: a shape of a river depends on the shape of the land surrounding it).
The earth element is a passive element in the body, there are no processes attached to it. The build-up of the body is made by the water element from the earth element, the maintenance of the body is done by the fire and water element, the moving of the musculature and skeleton of the body is made by the air and ether element. Without the rest of the elements the body consisting of earth element would be similar to a stone, which would stand invariably forever.

The appearance of the earth element

Let’s examine the different appearances of the earth element in order to recognise it in our life. It’s most obvious appearance is the fixed material; man’s fixed food and liquid drinks (juices, syrups, etc.) contains fixed substances in soluted form. It contains trace elements, mineral salts, proteins are the materials which build the different cells and tissues of the body in some way. We do not count here the enzymes, acids and similar compounds which can be found either in fixed or in liquid nutrition, and which take part in the different transformation processes, so they are the appearance form of the fire element.
The other type of appearance of the earth element is the physical body. As I mentioned before, the physical body will not exist without the earth element and also the higher entities (ex.: ghost bodies) will not exist without it, but the earth element is not so controlled in them.
You could have heard many times that water is the life itself. This sounds good, but has no kind of important meaning at all. It is true that on the surface of planet Earth the rate of water and mainland is about 70% (but the land as a constant material contains much more proportion of fixed materials in itself in it’s 6300 km radiated ball). It is also right that almost 70% of the human body consist of water, but imagine what would happen if there were no earth material… You won’t exist physically, and neiher will the animals, plants, unicellulars and stones… so never believe in the philosophies which sound good but mean nothing. The earth element is as much important for life as any other element, so we can not miss any of them.
All living entity is feeded from the earth element, the tree took it’s root in the land so that it would be able to ingest not only the water element but the important earth element also which is needed for life; all plants feed from earth element, also does animal and man. The land receives the roots of the plants, it provides home to animals in it’s cavities and caves, and also man’s house is built from it. The river is flowing in a channel digged in the land, and also lake and sea will find calmness in it (sea is also a big channel, which has bottom and coasts from land also). Your bed, your chair, your table and also your car is made of the earth element. Sometimes you call it iron, another time plastic, and again another time you call it glass. Science lists the earth element much more detailed as ayurveda does, but ayurveda knows the nature of the earth element much more widely as science does. The earth element is a recipient in the nature, as the above statements show ( it is the reciever place of plants, animals, people, rivers and seas), but if you look into it deeply you can see that man produce recipient-style goods from it. The house is a reciever because it creates home, the table receives the covers and your food, your chair receives you to have comfort, your car also receives you to be able to drive, your refrigerator also receives and so does your pots. Your cupboard and tub also receives. Where man does not use the recipient ability of earth element, he uses it’s solidity. Here we list your equipments, cutleries (knife, fork, spoon, etc.). Earth element is present everywhere.
Law says that energy will not get lost, it will be transformed only, this is true for the material also. The body (the form) is the one that can be destroyed. These laws give faith to the believers who believe in the eternal life since millennia. Because if the energy and material will not get lost, how can be destroyed what superior is: soul and consciousness. And if consciousness is a common one (collective consciousness), how can my consciousness get destroyed, which glitters in the common consciousness. The earth element, which forms the physical body, may be transformed, but the created consciousness will be in the transformed material also. Me and the Father, same way as you and Father are common one, the body may change, because fire living in the man modifies everything, but the earth element will be organized to a new body sooner or later.
The uncontrolled earth element in the people summarizes in spiritual level. The growing greed of man excites the collective earth element also. According to a prophecy strong earthquakes will shake the earth when the history of humanity approaches to the end. Law can not be made invalid: “ what is inside is also outside, what is below is also above.” The inner earthquakes happening in the humanity (which are the consequences of greed, avidity, aggression, fury, fear from the material world) generating destructive earthquakes in the external world. Do not use the earth element for your greed, but use it to be open. Do not be worried about the future, and do not allow the past to restrain you. Be able to accept the opportunities in every moment, if it does not lead to sin. Do not be controlled by obduracy, but learn how to forgive, and insist on the correct principles with tooth and nail. If you reach love the earth element will help you to keep it, if you reach recognising the truth the earth element will help you to remain in it.