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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 37  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 111-115

Kāma kautūhalam - A monograph on aphrodite care

1 Department of P.G. Studies in Samhita and Siddhanta, Sri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara College of Ayurveda, Udupi, Karnataka, India
2 Department of P.G. Studies in Ayurveda Siddhanta, Government Ayurveda Medical College, Mysore, Karnataka, India

Date of Web Publication16-May-2019

Correspondence Address:
Arhanth Kumar A Jain
Department of P.G. Studies in Samhita and Siddhanta, Sri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara College of Ayurveda, Udupi . 574 118, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/asl.ASL_36_18

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Kāma Kautūhalam is an unfamiliar monograph on Aphrodite care authored by Śrī Mehanātha. It encompasses 75 verses spanning four chapters dealing with various aspects of Aphrodite care. Employing lucid Sanskrit versification is the connected advantage of the text. Śrī Śāligrāmaji Vaiśya has written a Hindi commentary named Napuṃsakasanjīvinī. Mehanātha restricts the subject only to understanding and managing strategies for sexual disorders in the monograph. Nowhere in the monograph have sexual acts or related instructions been described. The first chapter introduces the subject. The second narrates aetiology, pathogenesis and treatment principles for sexual ailments and related issues. The third and fourth chapter contains 70 distinct formulations. In this connection an attempt has been made to probe, analyse and familiarize the monograph to the Ayurveda community.

Keywords: Hemādri, Kāma Kautūhalam, Mehanātha, Śāligrāmaji Vaiśya

How to cite this article:
A Jain AK, Manjunath S. Kāma kautūhalam - A monograph on aphrodite care. Ancient Sci Life 2017;37:111-5

How to cite this URL:
A Jain AK, Manjunath S. Kāma kautūhalam - A monograph on aphrodite care. Ancient Sci Life [serial online] 2017 [cited 2023 Mar 21];37:111-5. Available from: https://www.ancientscienceoflife.org/text.asp?2017/37/2/111/248872

  Introduction Top

Aphrodite care is an important branch of Ayurveda and it is named as Vājīkaraṇa[1] or Vṛṣa.[2] The Bṛhattrayī, and Laghutrayī and many other books deal Aphrodite care. Keen exploration of literature suggests that during the earlier ages this speciality was merged with other disciplines of Ayurveda. At that period it was reserved only to manage sexual maladies majorly. Eventually Vājīkaraṇa attained additional significance and developed as a separate area of speciality, where more importance has been provided to Kāma (art of sex) than management sexual maladies.[2] Thus this led to the evolution of Kāma related treatises with the prime example being Vātsyāyana's Kāmasūtra. Other such monographs related to Kāma are Anaṅgaraṅga, Kucimāra tantra, Ratirahasya, Rasikarañjana, Rasikabodhinī, Sṛṅgāratilaka, Kāmasamūha, Smaradīpikā, Kādambarasvīkaraṇa sūtra, Pancasāyaka, Kāmakuñjalatā, Ratimañjarī, Ratiratnapradīpikā etc.[3] However both Vājīkaraṇa and Kāma related literature mainly assist an individual to accomplish Kāma puruṣārtha (one of the four goals of life), which in turn facilitates to acquire other goals of life (Dharma, Artha and Mokṣa).[4]

Today's world needs real solutions for many sexual problems. Entire perception of sex has been shifted from right to wrong because of the influence of media, current life style and environment. Many wrong notions, expectations and practices of sex are leading to various sexual disorders. Also declining occurrence of sexual intimacy is becoming a leading cause of relationship problems of married couples.[5] In order to have right perception, physicians and even other individuals must approach the ancient views through literature on Vājīkaraṇa and Kāma. Unfortunatelymost of the ancient works are concealed and unnoticed. KāmaKautūhalamofMehanātha is one such epitome monograph which is yet to be explored and brought to limelight. Hence we review KāmaKautūhalamhere from the point of literary research.

Title of the monograph

The title Kāma Kautūhalam itself points out the meaning. Kāma means sex or love or desire.[6] Kautūhalam refers to excellence.[7] Thus Kāma Kautūhalam refers to the text that which has excellent information related to Sexual disorders. But here the word Kāma is not related to sexual act, but it refers to Aphrodite care. Keen review also suggests that the content of the text is mainly concerned with the management of multiple maladies of sex. Nowhere in the monograph has the rationale for naming the work as Kāma Kautūhalam been revealed.

The author Śrī Mehanātha

During the introduction to the subject, in the first chapter, the author reveals his name as Mehanātha. This is the only one reference available in the text i. e., “Likhate Mehanāthakaḥ”.[8] But in the available Hindi translated text book, author of the text has been mentioned as Hemādri.[9] But the literature search doesn't support this. History, time period and details of Mehanātha are yet to be established by historians. A Hindi commentary of this work, has been written by ĀyurvedoddhārakaŚāligrāmajiVaiśya, a resident of Murādābād(At present Moradabad is a district of Uttar Pradesh, India). This commentary is named “Napuṃsakasanjīvinī”.[10]

Status of the manuscript

Apparent search in various manuscript libraries reveals non availability of Kāma Kautūhalam manuscript. In the preface of the available Hindi translation, it is stated that Vaiśyavaṃśāvataṃsa Seṭh Khemarāj Śrī Kṛṣṇa Dās provided the script for translation to Śrī Śāligrāma Vaiśya. Later, the translation of the text Kāma Kautūhalam to Hindi was done and it was published by Śrī Khemarāj Śrī Kṛṣṇa Dās, a resident of Mumbai. The text was printed at Śrī Venkaṭeśvara press Mumbai. This text has been published in Saṃvat 1974 and Śakā year 1839 (1917 CE).

Language of the Monograph

The text is written in Sanskrit language. Usage of the language is very straightforward and lucid. In many places the author uses Hindi names of the drugs such as Mākalla, Lisoraka, Kabābcīni, Khākhasa, Matsangi and so on.[11] Thus the work may date back to either medieval or post medieval age.

Form of the text

This monograph consists of four chapters named as Prakāśa (That which illuminates). It encompasses a total of 75 verses. Numbering pattern of the verses in the text is also unique. Rather than considering two lines as one verse, in the present text all verses of particular formulation or context are considered as a single one. Thus 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th chapters contain 1, 4, 15 and 55 verses respectively. All four chapters have no names. There is no specific starting (introductory) and ending (conclusionary) colophons in all chapters.[12]

The author has arranged the chapters in a sequential order. First chapter describes the objective or the importance of the text. Later second chapter deals with the various diseases. This is followed by the third and fourth chapters, which deal with various management strategies.

Objectives of the text

Mehanāthamentions the following objectives of his monograph:

  • Klībatva nāśanopāya – Methods to eradicate impotency
  • Vājīkaraṇa – Procedure to normalise all components of sexual life
  • Vīrya rodham – Medicaments to normalise ejaculation
  • Liṅga vṛddhi – Therapeutics to strengthen phallus
  • Sthūlīkaraṇa – Procedures to increase the body mass
  • Śukravṛddhi – Medicines to increase regenerative element
  • Balam – Treatments to enhance physical and mental strength
  • Puṣṭi – Techniques to nourish body mass
  • Kāmapradīpanam – Medicaments to enhance sexual desire
  • Bhagadrāvaṇam – Therapeutics to provide sexual satisfaction to women
  • Vandhyātva nivāraṇam – Medicines to cure Infertility
  • Puṣpanāśana m – Treatments to prevent ovulation/avoid menstrual variations
  • Prameha-Pradara rogahara – Procedures to eradicate Diabetes mellitus, Abnormal uterine bleeding
  • Vandhyāputrakara – Techniques to provide progeny in infertile woman
  • Puruṣo vīryavān – Medicines to enhance vigour in male.

Content of the compendium

The monograph consists of four chapters. The chapters are named as prakāśa (that which illuminates). First prakāśa narrates the condition of the universe which made the author to write this text. Objectives and benefits of the text are also narrated here. Situation of the society during author's period is explained. The text starts with a colophon – “Śrī Rādhā Govindābhyām Namaḥ”[8]

The Second prakāśa explains the aetiology (nidāna), Pathogenesis (samprāpti), treatment principles (cikitsā sūtra), and drug–diet (auṣadha and āhāra) for Napuṃsakatā (all sexual disorders) in general. A list of 28 vājīkaraṇa dravyas [Table 1] and a list of 26 general treatment strategies [Table 2] has been described.
Table 1: Twenty eight drugs mentioned in second chapter

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Table 2: Twenty six treatment strategies mentioned in second chapter

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The third prakāśa describes formulations, specifically the cūrṇas (powders) to be administered internally in order to enhance sexual vigour, quantity of semen, erection and sexual act. A total of 15 formulations are explained in this chapter. Each formulation contains drugs, method of preparation, dosage, modes of administration, action and postprandial drinks [Table 3]. The fourth prakāśa deals with 55 formulations mainly tablet based [Table 4].
Table 3: Fifteen formulations mentioned in third chapter

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Table 4: Fifty five formulations mentioned in fourth chapter

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Special herbs mentioned in Kāma Kautūhalam

  • Mārjāra kanḍa – Vidāri kanda (Pueraria tuberosa)
  • Mākalla – Padma bīja (Euryale ferox)
  • Pārasīka Yavāni – Hyoscyamus niger
  • Śveta vṛntāka – Morus indica
  • Bahu phalī – Phyllanthus emblica
  • Āṭhīphala – Kapittha (Limonia acidissima)
  • Lisoraka – Ākārakarabha
  • Gṛñjanaka – Daucus carota
  • Hulahula –Sauvarcala – Gynandropsis pentaphylla
  • Budbudabījam – Seeds of Nymphaea alba
  • LahasorakaBahuvāra (Cardia mixa)

Rasa dravyas mentioned in the text

  • Vaṅga – Tin
  • Abhraka – Mica
  • Sāra – Iron
  • Śilājatu – Black Bitumen
  • Pārada – Mercury
  • Gandhaka – Sulphur
  • Abdhi śoṣaSamudra phena (Cuttlefish bone)
  • DardaHiṅgula (Cinnabar)
  • Saindhava – Rock salt.

Jāṅgama dravyas used in this work

  • Kastūri – Musk
  • Madhu – Honey
  • Cow's ghee – Go Ghṛta
  • Go Kṣīra – Cow's milk
  • Mahiṣī payaḥ – Milk of Buffalo
  • Mahiṣī dadhi – Buffalo curd.

Unique features of the text

  • Drug Śveta sāma is mentioned, which is Śyāmāka (K. K 3/14)
  • Sāra represents Loha bhasma (K. K 3/11)
  • Hindi term for Śākoṭa i. e., Sahori is used in the text (K. K. 4/4)
  • Mākalla i. e., Padma bījam is mentioned as one of the ingredients of many formulations (K. K. 4/4)
  • For Kapittha, a synonym Āṭhīphala has mentioned in the text (K. K. 4/5)
  • Bahuphalī is used for many formulations (K. K. 4/5,6)
  • Seeds of Karavīra are mentioned in Vājīkaraṇa vaṭi (K. K. 4/7)
  • Puṣpa pañcaka (Taruṇī, 2 varieties of Śrīpādi, Jāti, Āmra) is mentioned in Kāma Kautūhala vaṭi (K. K. 4/10)
  • Pathological condition Bindu cyuti (Abnormal ejaculation) is mentioned in this text (K. K. 4/11)
  • Kadalī kanda (tuberous part of banana plant) is one of the major ingredients of Vīrya Vardhinī vaṭi (K. K. 4/14)
  • Vidhukesara is the synonym given for Karpūra (K. K. 4/17)
  • Tupra is the synonym of Vamśalocana mentioned in Kāmoddīpana Guṭikā
  • Bindu prasāra (K. K. 4/29), Bindu prasṛti (K. K. 4/31), Bindu vistīrṇa (K. K. 4/33), Bindu niṣpandana (K. K. 4/34), Bindu prasravaṇa (K. K. 4/38), Bindu visramsana (K. K. 4/39), Bindu visṛti (K. K. 4/40), are the distinct terms used in the text
  • Coconut is the ingredient of many preparations which is the speciality of the text
  • Samudraphala is one of the ingredients of Lahasoraka vaṭi (K. K. 4/35)
  • Revacīnī which is considered as Āmla vetasa is the ingredient of Revacīnyādi vaṭi (K. K.4/36)
  • Ābha (Babbulu) is the ingredient of Ābhādi vaṭi (K. K.4/37)
  • The text explains only the modes of internal medications. There is no mention of external medicaments
  • It's interesting to note that no meat preparations are given in the text but meat is mentioned as an aphrodisiac once in the text
  • Kalpanās mentioned in the texts are Cūrṇa Kalpanā (powder based formulations), Sattva Kalpanā (essence based formulations), Pāka Kalpanā (cooking based formulation), Vaṭi Kalpanā (Tablet formulations), Modaka Kalpanā (Sweet dish), Śaṣkuli Kalpanā (Large round cake based formulation), Rasāla Kalpanā (Sugar cane based formulations) and Payasya Kalpana (Pudding based formulations)
  • Main anupānas (therapeutic vehicles) mentioned in the text are cow's milk, cow's ghee, honey and sugar.

  Conclusion Top

Kāma Kautūhalam is an exceptional monograph on Aphrodite care. The author Mehanāthahas explained various aspects of Vājīkaraṇa and Kāma under four chapters which contain a total of 75 verses. Management strategies of many maladies has been narrated through 70 unique formulations. Clarity, practicality, affordability, efficacy and specificity regarding the formulations are unique features of the text. The contribution of ŚāligrāmaVaiśya in translating the text to Hindi is also worth mentioning. After thorough literary analysis the present review has been done in order to carry KāmaKautūhalammonograph to the main stream.

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Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

Acharya YT. Agnivesa, Charaka Samhita. Reprint edition. Varanasi: Chowkhamba Prakashan; 2011. p. 189.  Back to cited text no. 1
Kunthe AM, Shastri KR. Vagbhata, ashtnaga hridayam. In: Shastri HS, editor. Arunadatta's Sarvanga Sundara and Hemadri's Ayurveda Rasayana Commentary. Varanasi: Chowkhambha Samskriti Samsthan; 2010. p. 5.  Back to cited text no. 2
Acharya J. Kamashastra Antargata Vajikarana Vijnana. 1st ed. Varanasi: Chowkhambha Orientalia; 2004. p. 9.  Back to cited text no. 3
Basu BN. Kamasutra of Vatsyayana, English Translation. 6th ed. Calcutta: S. Gupta Medical Publication; 1945. p. 25.  Back to cited text no. 4
Available from: https:/www.yourtangocom/experts/brad-browing/marriage-issues-12-big-ones. [Last accessed on 2015 Nov 3].  Back to cited text no. 5
Monier-Williams. Sanskrit- English Dictionary. Delhi: Motilal Banarasidas Publishers Private Limited; 1999. p. 271.  Back to cited text no. 6
Monier-Williams. Sanskrit- English Dictionary. Delhi: Motilal Banarasidas Publishers Private Limited; 1999. p. 290.  Back to cited text no. 7
Vaishya S. Hemadri, Kamakutuhalam, Hindi Translation. 1st ed. Bombay: Khemaraja Shrikrishnadas Publications; 1917. p. 5.  Back to cited text no. 8
Vaishya S. Hemadri, Kamakutuhalam, Hindi Translation. 1st ed. Bombay: Khemaraja Shrikrishnadas Publications; 1917. p. 3.  Back to cited text no. 9
Vaishya S. Hemadri, Kamakutuhalam, Hindi Translation. 1st ed. Bombay: Khemaraja Shrikrishnadas Publications; 1917. p. 4.  Back to cited text no. 10
Arhanth Kumar A, Shreevathsa. Hemadri, Kamakautuhalam- Discipline on Aphrodite Care. English Translation. 1st ed. Varanasi: Chawkhambha Surabharati Prakshan; 2017. p. 3.  Back to cited text no. 11
Arhanth Kumar A, Shreevathsa. Hemadri, Kamakautuhalam- Discipline on Aphrodite Care, English Translation. 1st ed. Varanasi: Chawkhambha Surabharati Prakshan; 2017. p. 2.  Back to cited text no. 12


  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4]


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