There are seven hundred Sirás (vessels) in the human organism (except those which cannot be counted for their extremely attenuated size). The vessels (Sirás) by their contractibility and expansibility etc. sustain and nourish the organism in the same manner as streamlets and canals serve to keep a field or a garden moist and fruitful. From the principal or central trunk hundreds of small and minute vessels branch off and spread all over the body, just as small or minute fibres are found to emanate from the large central vein of the leaf of a plant. They originate from the umbilical region and thence they spread all over the body upwards and downwards and obliquely. 2.

Memorable Verses

All the Siras (vessels) that are found in the organisms of created beings, originate from the umbilical region (Nabhi) † and thence they spread all over their bodies. The life of an organic animal is seated in the vessels surrounding its navel which forms their starting point. The navel in its turn rests on or is attached to the Pranas (the life-carrying vessels - nerves attached to it) in the same manner as the nave of a wheel supports the spokes, and the spokes in their turn support the nave. 3-4.

* The Sanskrita term S'irá denotes veins, nerves, arteries and lymphatic vessels as well. Some read S'irá- Varna (different colours of the Sirás) in lieu of S'irá-varnana (description of S'irás).

† Most probably the idea is derive 1 from the appearance of the S'irás in their foetal state.

Principal Siras

Of these Siras (vessels), forty arc principal ones, of which ten are Váyu-carrying Sirás (nerves), ten are Pitta-carrying Sirás (veins), ten convey Kapha (lymphatic vessels?) and ten are blood-carrying Sirás (arteries). Of these the Váyu-carrying Sirás, situated in the specific receptacle of that bodily principle (Váta), are again found to branch out in one hundred and seventy five smaller branches (ramifications). Similarly, each of the remaining Pitta-carrying, Kapha-carrying and blood-carrying vessels (Sirás) situated in their specific receptacles, (ie, in the receptacles of Pitta, Kapha and spleen and liver respectively) arc found to branch out in as many numbers (one hundred and seventy-five), - thus making a total of seven hundred in all. 5.

Their Specific Locations

There are twenty-five Váyu-carrying Sirás (nerves) in one leg and the same count applies to the other. Similarly there are twenty five Váyu-carrying Sirás (vessels) in each of the hands. There are thirty-four Váyu-carrying vessels in the Koshtha trunk); of these eight occur in the pelvic regions attached with the anus and the penis; two in each of the sides, six in the back, six in the Udara (cavity of the abdomen), and ten in the region of the chest. There are forty-one Váyu-carrying Sirás (vessels) situated in the region above the clavicles. Of these fourteen occur in the neck; four in the two ears; nine in the tongue; six in the nose and eight in the two eyes. Thus we have finished the description of the one hundred and seventy-five Sirás that carry Váyu. 6. What has been said of these Váyu-carrying vessels (Siras) will also hold good to the rest (in blood-carrying, Pitta-carrying and Kapha-carrying channels in the respective regions of the body), with the exception that in these three cases, (Pitta, Kapha and blood) ten occur in the eyes and two in the ears in lieu of eight and four respectively, as in the case of Váyu-carrying Sirás (vessels). Thus we have described the seven hundred Sirás with their branches. 7.