Definition - What does Dhauti mean?

Dhauti is a Sanskrit term meaning "purification" and is derived from the root word, dhoo, meaning "to wash." Dhauti is one of the shatkarmas, which are the six cleansing techniques described by Hatha yoga. The six shatkarmas are neti, dhauti, basti, nauli kriya, kapalbhati and tratak. This yogic cleansing technique improves digestive and respiratory health.

Yogapedia explains Dhauti

Dhauti is broadly classified as the following:

  • Antar dhauti (internal cleansing) - The divisions of antar dhauti include vatsara dhauti (intestinal cleansing with air), varisara dhauti (intestine cleansing), agnisar kriya (activation of digestive fire) and kunjar dhauti (cleansing of the stomach with water).
  • Hrida dhauti (thoracic cleansing) - Hrida dhauti is classified as danda dhauti, vastra dhauti and vaman dhauti.
  • Sirsha dhauti or danta dhauti (head cleansing) - Sirsha dhauti or danta dhauti is performed to cleanse the eyes, ears, teeth, palate and tongue.

The benefits of dhauti practice include elimination of phlegm, strengthening of the respiratory and digestive systems, elimination of harmful bacteria and general detoxification.

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