Ayurveda teaches that each us of is born with a unique constitutional balance. This is known as our prakruti.
Prakruti is determined by our parents’ nature, as well as the circumstances of our birth. Our mother’s emotional and physical state, the season, the location of our birthplace, etc. are all determining factors in our prakruti.
Then our prakruti becomes imbalanced due to internal and external factors and becomes vikruti.
Prakruti and vikruti go hand in hand.
Genetic factors, bad food combining, repressed emotions, weak tissue and organ systems, etc. all contribute to our vikruti.
Prakruti is our inner nature, while vikruti is our imbalanced current state.
We need to consider both prakruti and vikruti in an Ayurvedic assessment.
Ayurveda utilizes an eightfold examination process.
The test to determine constitution and imbalances its just one small part of determining Prakrti and Vikrti.
Many people today taking Ayurvedic constitutional quizzes in books or online and feel that these give an “accurate” model of their so-called “dosha type” and sometimes get confused when going to a Practitioner and it differs.
Some practitioners place too much emphasis on temporal rather than life-long traits or on very variable factors.
There are several factors to consider for even the Prakriti or one’s in-born biological constitution or nature alone.
Doshas themselves are but simplified expressions of the five great elements (panchamahabhutas) and the 20 gunas (qualities) within us known in Ayurveda. You will learn this later on, in the advanced modules.
Each element itself is further divided into portions and qualities of its own.
Each of us has a unique set of these also threefold: constitutionally, psychologically and disease-wise, of which the dosha-model is but a simplified version of alone.
Then there are sub-types within these doshas as heavier Vata and Pitta types and slim Kapha types.
Jyotish Vedic Astrology is also used to determine Prakrti and Vikrti.
When we first start learning about Ayurveda and the Dosha, we approach it in a very simplistic way.
The test might seem inaccurate, only because it’s one of many tools for assessing one’s constitution.
While at this stage we haven’t got the skills or knowledge for the full assessment, we can still notice our constitutional ‘trends’ and begin to understand where our individual specific balance lays.