Basti (hatha yoga)

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Dhauti is one of the six Shatkarmas, purifications used in traditional hatha yoga; Vastra Dhauti, using a long cloth to clean the oesophagus and stomach, is illustrated here.[1]

Basti is an important Shatkarma, a yogic purification, intended to clean the lower abdomen, especially the colon.[1] The Hatha Yoga Pradipika and other sources[2] attribute to it many beneficial effects. There are two ways to perform Basti:

  • Sthala basti (aka Sushka basti or Vata basti), cleans the colon by sucking air in the body without the help of any catheter or tube.
  • Jala basti (aka 'Vati basti') cleans the colon by sucking water into the anus through a pipe.

The Hatha Yoga Pradipika states that the pipe form of basti destroys swelling of the abdomen and diseases of the spleen among other ailments.[3]

The Gheranda Samhita states that the wet (pipe) form of basti wards off urinary diseases, wind, and constipation, conferring a physique "like the god of love".[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Mallinson & Singleton 2017, pp. xxviii-xxxii, 46, 49-50, 71-79.
  2. ^ Basti - Yogic Enema, in Yoga Magazine, a publication of Bihar School of Yoga
  3. ^ Mallinson & Singleton 2017, p. 72.
  4. ^ Mallinson & Singleton 2017, p. 76.


  • Mallinson, James; Singleton, Mark (2017). Roots of Yoga. Penguin Books. ISBN 978-0-241-25304-5. OCLC 928480104.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)