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Thread: Hot and cold water.

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    Question Hot and cold water.

    I've heard things about bathing in hot water not being good for the body, specifically about it hitting the top of the head.

    Also heard and read things about cold water being bad for the health and even related to loss of hair. So I began to always mix colder with room temperature (quite hot most of the times around here) water.

    However, I'm not sure about the validity of these claims. So please enlighten me in this regard.

    Om Tat Sat

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    Re: Hot and cold water.

    Have heard in many circles that disciples are to take cold showers, especially first thing in the morning to cleanse themselves, but was never sure if it was because the rivers are usually cold naturally or that it would cost an ashram too much to heat the water for all its visitors or not. I know from experience that cold water wakes one up, especially at bhramamuhurta. In the same breath, it is told that initiates warm water for their gurus to bathe in. So I question, must one attain a level of detachment (or other spiritual level (for lack of a better word)) before warm water is permitted? I understand in the case of bhramacharya that cold showers help one to keep oneself in check. I would like to say that I've read most of this in the works of Sw. Sivananda, but I may stand corrected.

    In regards to cold water and hair loss, I have heard the same and would like to learn of your replies.

    Om Namah Sivaya!

    Clayton

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    Re: Hot and cold water.

    Namaste Pietro,

    Quote Originally Posted by Pietro Impagliazzo View Post
    I've heard things about bathing in hot water not beirieng good for the body, specifically about it hitting the top of the head.

    Also heard and read things about cold water being bad for the health and even related to loss of hair. So I began to always mix colder with room temperature (quite hot most of the times around here) water.

    However, I'm not sure about the validity of these claims. So please enlighten me in this regard.
    Yogis take bath with water whatever is available to them. However, we are not advanced Yogis and cannot imitate them. So, what to do ? The simple rule is "Listen to your body". If you feel like taking a hot bath (in cold season or taking bath after recovering from fever, after a long tiring journey etc.), go for a hot bath. If you feel like taking a cold shower (like in summer) do it by all means. When the temperature is not much down, a cold bath makes you feel fresher than a hot bath. However, when it is too much cold, a cold bath should be avoided as it is a shock to an already distressed system due to extreme cold weather.

    You should avoid using very hot water on your head as head is meant to be kept cool. There is common saying in Ayurveda :

    Paanva garam, shir thanda, vaidya aawe to maaro danda !

    ==> Keep your legs warm and your head cool. Then you can afford driving the doctor away with a stick !!

    Use of hot/cold water on hair fall seems to me illogical. As far as I know, it is not supported by Ayurveda and it has no other scientific support too.

    OM
    "Om Namo Bhagvate Vaasudevaye"

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    Re: Hot and cold water.

    Quote Originally Posted by devotee View Post
    Use of hot/cold water on hair fall seems to me illogical. As far as I know, it is not supported by Ayurveda and it has no other scientific support too.

    OM
    Vannakkam: I'm not bald yet (other than the tonsure times) and I've been using hot water for all of my life. I wonder where and how such ideas get started.

    What about drinking water? Warm, hot, or iced? My wife and I disagree on this. On our recent trip we got used to ordering 2 bottles: 1 at room temperature, and 1 chilled. Personally, I think we should be looking more at whats in the water ... fluoride, bacteria, minerals etc. than the temperature.

    Aum Namasivaya

  5. #5

    Re: Hot and cold water.

    Namaste,

    When I was interested in semi-ayurveda (Book was based on ayurveda & simplified like Vata was Air, Pita - Fire & Kapha - Earth), there was a lot of tips how each dosha should live.

    For Vata & Kapha warm water was recommended but for Pita colder, since Pita is hot by nature.

    I'm not sure how much of that is true though, I believe it's personal preference.

    Have a wonderful day,
    ~Alice
    Siva Yogaswami used to say, "It takes courage to be happy all the time."

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    Re: Hot and cold water.

    Thank you everyone for the contributions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eastern Mind View Post
    Vannakkam: I'm not bald yet (other than the tonsure times) and I've been using hot water for all of my life. I wonder where and how such ideas get started.

    What about drinking water? Warm, hot, or iced? My wife and I disagree on this. On our recent trip we got used to ordering 2 bottles: 1 at room temperature, and 1 chilled. Personally, I think we should be looking more at whats in the water ... fluoride, bacteria, minerals etc. than the temperature.

    Aum Namasivaya
    I don't know EM, after I got these informations I began noticing how a bath too hot makes the body feel dull, almost half-dead, and the discomfort water too cold on the mouth gives to the whole head.

    In fact, I was mostly curious if I should indeed try to bath colder, because I know how refreshing a cold bath is, but if it's slightly colder (here in Rio de Janeiro, if it's 20ºC (68ºF) you already see people with coats! For someone who lives up North that must be absurd! hehehe) the mind refuses. So I feel bad, like I had to take a cold bath in order to feel austere.

    Regarding the quality of water, once there was a shortage of water around here and we used a 20 liter gallon of mineral water to bathe. I didn't even use shampoo (I had long hair at the time) and my hair was amazingly smooth, the quantity of Chlorine in pipe water must be really bad for hair and skin.

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    Re: Hot and cold water.

    hari o
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    There is a simple āyurvedic¹ principle that like increases like. That is an increase in one tattva (dhātu&#185 then the possibility for an imbalance ( will) occur. there will be an excess of one tattva over the other.

    So the question at hand - I think of it this way:
    Hot + water : hot = pitta + water = kapha
    Cold + water :cold = vāta + water = kapha
    • Excessive hot creates doṣa¹ in pitta. If one is a pitta constitution then pitta is aggravated.
    • Excessive cold creates doṣa in vāta . If one is vāta constitution (prakṛti&#185.
    • Excessive water creates doṣa in kapha. If one is kapha prakṛti, then this dhātu is aggravated.
    So , the answer to the question is what is one's constitution (prakṛti&#185.

    You ask, well how many can there be? If there is only 3 types, then I have a 33% chance of guessing which type I am. This probability will work well if one is in Las Vegas, yet the answer is there are 7 types. Now your probability goes to 1/7th ( 14.2%) chance of merely guessing.
    So, what are the 7 then?
    • pitta
    • vāta some call vāyu
    • kapha some call śleṣman
    • vāta-pitta
    • vāta-kapha
    • vāta-pitta-kapha
    Note some call out pitta-vāta, where pitta is primary, then vāta for the 4th listing above.

    praām


    words
    • āyurved is āyus + veda : āyus = life , vital power , vigour , health , duration of life , long life + ved = knowledge ;
      • āyurved then = the knowledge of life and health
    • doṣa - detrimental effect ; blemish; rooted ( √ ) in duṣ meaning fault , vice , deficiency , want , inconvenience , disadvantage associated with the 3 humours of the body i.e. pitta , vāta (vāyu ), and kapha (śleṣman).
    • dhātu constituent part , ingredient ; tri-dhā́tu , threefold
    • prakṛti - the original or natural form or condition of anything;
      • nature , character , constitution , temper , disposition the original producer of or rather passive power of creating
      • the material world(consisting of 3 constituent essences or guṇa-s called sattva , rajas and tamas) ;
      • Nature distinguished from puruṣa.
    Last edited by yajvan; 19 January 2011 at 12:53 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: Hot and cold water.

    Quote Originally Posted by Pietro Impagliazzo View Post

    In fact, I was mostly curious if I should indeed try to bath colder, because I know how refreshing a cold bath is, but if it's slightly colder (here in Rio de Janeiro, if it's 20C (68F) you already see people with coats! For someone who lives up North that must be absurd! hehehe) the mind refuses. So I feel bad, like I had to take a cold bath in order to feel austere.
    Vannakkam: No offense to Yajvanji, but when you go for a walk in -35 C weather, and you simple cannot get warm even by crawling into the burning fireplace (What's that? some would ask?) or an oven, there's nothing quite like a hot bath or hot shower. I actually use an electric heating blanket.

    But then come summer when we can get to +35 on rare days, I can turn the lawn sprinkler on and run through it like some excited little boy just having fun. So up here where no Hindu in their right mind would ever live, it has more to do with the extremes of outside temperature than dosa or pitta or ayurveda.

    Same for drinking it ... hot tea, or chocolate in winter, iced tea in summer.

    Aum Namasivaya

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    Re: Hot and cold water.

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~

    namasté EM,



    Quote Originally Posted by Eastern Mind View Post
    Vannakkam: No offense to Yajvanji, but when you go for a walk in -35 C weather, and you simple cannot get warm even by crawling into the burning fireplace (What's that? some would ask?) or an oven, there's nothing quite like a hot bath or hot shower. I actually use an electric heating blanket.

    But then come summer when we can get to +35 on rare days, I can turn the lawn sprinkler on and run through it like some excited little boy just having fun. So up here where no Hindu in their right mind would ever live, it has more to do with the extremes of outside temperature than dosa or pitta or ayurveda.

    Same for drinking it ... hot tea, or chocolate in winter, iced tea in summer.

    Aum Namasivaya
    First , I do not see where an offense can be taken , you ask a good question.

    Note that the seasons stimulate various influences in one's constitution. If by being cold, one adds heat, then pitta is on the rise and the effect is warmth. Yet cold persists in winter no? So the stimulation of cold that is ~balanced~ by hot, brings comfort.

    In the summer there is the pitta influence throughout the environment. What do we do? Drink cool liquids - that brings ~balance~ again.

    So, now let's say it is summer and one chooses not to cool, but heat. Say one increases hot via spicy-hot foods ( hot peppers). What occurs ? there is excess. Excess from the environment ( the sun) and excess from the internal heat of the food, and that creates an imbalance of pitta. Where then is this felt? It could be felt in emotions, or lower intestinal track ( a place for pitta).

    Imbalances
    Imbalances when there is excess, some say aggravated, other say antagonistic, the balance has been lost and what can occur?
    • For vatta imbalance, could be experienced as some fear, some nervousness , like that.
    • For pitta it can be excessive emotions ( rajas), anger
    • For kapha it can be excessive possessiveness, attachment , overeating, and the like
    Are there others ? Yes, many.
    The goal is the balance of the 3 - pitta, vāta, kapha.

    praṇām
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: Hot and cold water.

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post

    namast EM,

    First , I do not see where an offense can be taken , you ask a good question.
    Vannakkam: Since you never seem to take offense, my tired still jet-lagged devious area of mind is pondering what I could say that would offend you.

    Problem is I'm not that brilliant at insults either, and even if I could come up with something, you'd just ignore it or realise it was someone being tired and grumpy or mischievous. So you have me in a self-inflicted but healthy dilemma. Maybe with some hot soup, I'll feel more balanced. Perhaps Boss could make me a dosa. Masala dosa. Then go to Pita pit where the daughter works. Vatta for?

    Aum Namasivaya

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