in India several thousand years ago, Ayurveda (Sanskrit for "science of
life") is a system that classifies physical ailments and mental conditions
according to one's basic constitution, or body type. Called doshas (Sanskrit
for "temperament"), these three distinct types are categorized as Pitta
(hot and sharp), Kapha (heavy and water-retaining) and Vata (dry and windy).
When Pitta is over stimulated, Kapha indulges or Vata becomes irritable,
conditions and ailments associated with these doshas erupt. To allay the
symptoms and promote the dosha's positive qualities, Ayurvedic practitioners
recommend specific lifestyle changes including diet, exercise, environment
and even attitude changes. In this article I will examine the Kapha dosha.
of this series discussed the Pitta dosha, and I will write about Vata
in a subsequent article.
Kapha Personality and Body Type
as the hot, sharp Pitta dosha (temperament) is prone to indigestion, ulcers
and heart disease, Kapha is a wet, heavy dosha distinguished
by water retention, respiratory complaints, swollen lymph glands and chronic ailments like diabetes and asthma. At their best, Kapha personalities are tranquil,
compassionate, reliable, agreeable and even-tempered. When threatened
by deadlines or long-term change, however, they may become excessive,
lethargic or depressive.
their sluggish metabolism is sometimes caused by an underactive thyroid
or iodine deficiency (for which they should take kelp and eat more fish),
weight gain usually results from consuming too much food and alcohol without
counteracting the caloric intake. Kapha types need to exercise regularly
and should be encouraged to take daily walks. To prevent water retention
and stimulate the metabolism, they should drink hot ginger tea, and eat
raw fruits and vegetables to cleanse and purify the system. Dairy products,
sauces, wheat and salty foods that retain fluids should be avoided.
Clinton: The Kapha Profile
as Kathie Lee
Gifford is categorized as Pitta with Vata, Bill
Clinton fits into both the Kapha and Pitta mold. While
Clinton's reddish skin tones are common among Pitta types, his Kapha physique,
characterized by the roundish face and broad shoulders, makes him look
heavier than he actually is. Like many Kapha types, Clinton is an allergy
sufferer and, as a result, experiences chest congestion, frequent laryngitis
and often appears teary-eyed.
legendary proclivity for fast food eating and sexual escapades are, most
probably, how Clinton deals with the stresses of his job. While his Pitta
temper periodically flares up, Clinton, more often than not, displays
Kapha strength by remaining cool, calm and collected. Like most Kapha
personalities, Clinton is known for procrastinating, and frequently waits
until the last moment to write his speeches. He also has a marvelous memory
and retains not only water, but a myriad of facts.
Taurus, Cancer, Libra, Sagittarius and Pisces are categorized as Kapha.
Each sign is noted for its sturdy, often overweight, frame as well as
for being friendly, agreeable and easy-going. These signs hold back negative
feelings, and instead of revealing how they feel, they often retreat into
a world of their own, or seek solace in food, alcohol or drugs, among
other things. Sagittarius, a fire sign that is both Kapha and Pitta, is
the least depressive of this group since the Archer, associated with the
planet Jupiter, never falls too far down. The Moon (linked to Cancer),
Venus (linked to Taurus and Libra) and Neptune (linked to Pisces) are
considered Kapha planets. Jupiter (linked to Sagittarius and sharing Pisces
with Neptune) is both Kapha and Pitta.
Chart Validates Kapha
At first glance, Clinton's horoscope reflects some Pitta tendencies. The
Mercury, Saturn and Pluto form a stellium in Leo. The exact conjunction Venus and Mars with the Ascendant explains his sudden skin flare-ups, as well
as outbursts of temper. A closer look, however, reveals that his Moon
is in Taurus and his Ascendant is Libra, both sensual, Venus-linked Kapha
signs that attest to his love of wine, women and song. (Let's not forget
that he plays the saxophone.) His nature is dominated by three Kapha planets
in Libra in the First House of personality—Venus, Neptune (which conjoin
the Libra ascendant) and Jupiter. Still another Kapha sign, Cancer, sits
on his Midheaven. Clinton may be a strong-willed Leo, but his indulgent
character and physical body type certainly fall into the Kapha category.
Activate Kapha for Better or Worse
November 1992, when transiting Jupiter conjoined Clinton's Libra Ascendant,
the Kapha charm and optimism that Clinton projected to the general public
gave him enough votes of confidence to elect him to the presidency. On
the other hand, when Saturn transited Aries from July 1996 through March
1999, and opposed those very same Libra planets, Clinton's Kapha excesses
came home to roost, and the country was inundated with stories of sexual
escapades with Monica Lewinsky, another Kapha personality and body type.
Just as Pitta people react to stress by becoming angry and hostile (which
we indeed saw with Clinton's wagging finger), Kapha personalities cope
by resorting to self-destructive patterns and habits.
the moment, transiting Uranus in Aquarius is squaring (making a difficult
90-degree angle) Clinton's Taurus Moon, which is linked to his Tenth House of
career and reputation. Any stress coming from the pressures of his
job (the end of his presidency), or his wife (the Moon) running for public
office, may once again surface with Kapha habits and ailments. Maintaining
regular exercise and diet will help counteract water retention or allergies,
which could also peak during this season. Since Taurus is linked to the
thyroid gland, it might be worthwhile for Clinton to get his thyroid checked.
With transiting Uranus, you just never know.