Shadanga Sharir

In ancient samhita the body i.e sharir mainly divided in to six major parts or segment. The human body is broadly made up of 6 large parts or unitsi.e Shadanga.

The Six Angas are –

2-Upper limbs
2-Lower limbs
1-Head and

तत्र अयं शरीरस्य अंग विभागः तद् यथा – द्वौ बाहू द्वे सक्थिनी शिरोग्रीवं अन्तराधी इति षड अंग / च शा ७ /१

As per Charaka –

According to Charaka body is divided in to –

  • Bahu – upper limbs ,2 in numbers
  • Sakthi – lowers, 2 in number
  • Shirogreeva – Head and Neck,1 in number
  • Antaradhi – Middle part of the body or trunk (include thorax and abdomen)-1 in number

तत् च षडंग शाखा: चतस्रो मध्यं पंचम षष्ठ: शिर इति / सु शा ५/३

Aacharya Sushrut classified Shadanga sharir in same manner but with change of names.

  • Shakhas – 4 in number (2 -urdhwa/upper limb+ 2 adho shakha/lower limb)
  • Madhyama shareera – Middle portion of body-1 in number (i.e Trunk region which includes thorax and abdomen)
  • Shira – Head-1 in number

As per Bhavamishra –

Bhavaprakash had divided sharira on the basis of their importance and the structures which they are made up of.

  • Shira (head)  -Seat of Gnanedriyas (sense organs)
  • Urdhwa Shakha (upper limbs) – seat of anguli (fingers)
  • Adah Shakha (lower limbs) – Seat of anguli (toes)
  • Vaksha (Chest) – Seat of important organs like Hriday (heart), Phupusa (lungs), Stana (breast) etc.
  • Udar (abdomen) – Seat of visceral organs like yakrit (liver), pleeha (spleen), kloma (pancreas), antra (intestines), vasti (urinary bladder), vrukka (kidneys), guda (anus, rectum) etc.
  • Prushta (back) – seat of Prushta vamsha (spine, vertebral column), Kati (pelvis), Nitamba (hipss, butt) etc.

Impotance of Shaanga Shareera –

It is easy to learn the topics in fragments or parts. When we studied any large section in to divided parts then it is much more understandable and learnable. Even each and every small topics are covered by this method.We get the detailed knowledge of each and every parts of the body.

Structures like all tissues, organs and cells are comes in to criteria of Shadanga shareera. The muscles,  bones, cartilage and other soft tissues which helps in loicomotion comes in to criteria of Shakha and Prushta. Brain, all sense organs and important nerves are located in Shira Pradesh vital organs like hriday and Phupusa are located in vaksha Pradesh while other important organs like liver, spleen, kidney, intestines, bladder, pancreas, stomach, uterus are located in Udar-kati guha.

In short by learning the Shadanga shareera we get the detail knowledge about the all systems in the body and vital organs. We get the detail knowledge of marmas, bones, muscles, nerves and blood supply. We get the details knowledge about Dosha, dhatu and Malas.

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