Sages of authority hold an application of the Vasti to be the best of all measures such as, the application of a Sneha, etc.; and why? Because on account of its varied functions and of its being composed of the various kinds of medicinal drugs a Vasti helps to restrain (Samgraha), pacify (Sams'amana) and cleanse (Sams'c dhana) the different Doshas (morbific principles) of the body. It helps the recreation and growth of fresh semen, contributes to the building up of an emaciated frame, reduces corpulency, invigorates eyesight, arrests premature old age and tends to rejuvenate. A regular and proper use of a Vasti tends to improve one's complexion and bodily strength, imparts longevity, contributes to the growth of the body, ensures the enjoyment of sound health and guards against the inroad of any disease whatever. Applications of Vastis are highly efficacious in cases of fever, dysentery, cataract, catarrh, diseases of the head, Adhimantha, vomiting, facial paralysis, epileptic fits, convulsions, (Akshepaka), hemiplegia, locomotor ataxy (Ekánga) and paraplegia (Sarvánga-Roga) tympanites, ascites or abdominal dropsy, Sarkará (gravels or urinary concretions), gastralgia (Sula), scrotal tumours (including hydrocele, hernia, etc.), Upadams'a, retention of stool 1 and urine (Anáha), strangury (Mutra-krichchhra), Gulma, Váta-rakta, upward coursing of urine, stool and Váyu, loss of semen, breast-milk and of catamanial fluid, Hrid-graha (catching pain in the chest), Manyágraha (wryneck), Hanu-graha (numbness of the jaws), haemorrhoids, As'mari (stone) and Mudha-garbha (false presentation and difficult labour). 2.
Applications of Vasti are always efficacious in diseases due to the action of the deranged Váyu, Pitta and Kapha, in those due to the vitiated condition of blood and in those brought on by the concerted action of any two or all of them. 3.
The length of the pipe of a Vasti should be made six fingers in respect of an infant of one year and eight and ten fingers in respect of a boy of eight and an adult of sixteen years respectively, the girth of its calibre being respectively equal to those of the small finger, the ring finger and the middle finger respectively in the three afore-named instances. The pipe should have Karnikás * or bulblike protrusions attached to it at one of the ends above a space of one finger and a half, two fingers, and two fingers and a half respectively in the three afore-said forms of the apparatus. The girth of their mouths (to be introduced into the rectum) should be respectively made to equal those of the calibres of feathers of a crow, a falcon and a peacock, and the girth of the channels of the main body of the pipes should respectively be such as to let a Mudga pulse, a Másha pulse and a Kaláya pulse to pass through them. The quantity of the fluid with which an Asthápana-Vasti should be charged is equal respectively to two, four, and eight Prasritas †
* The Karnikás are attached to the pipes for guarding against their being thrust into the rectum.
† A Prasrita measure is generally equal to two Palas, i e., sixteen Tolas. But here it has the particular meaning as given in the text.
(in volume). A Prasrita measure being here equal to what can be contained in the hollow of the patient's own palms (in each particular case). 4.
The length of the pipe and the quantity of the fluid to charge with should be gradually increased with the progress of the patient's age and in consideration of his strength and bodily capacity. 5.
The pipe of a Vasti in respect of an adult above twenty-five years of age, should be made twelve fingers in length having a girth equal to that of his thumb at its base and a girth equal to that of the small finger at its mouth. At a distance of three fingers from above the mouth the Karnikás should be fixed. The bore should be such as to allow a feather of a vulture to pass through it, while the fissure at the mouth would have a girth to allow the stone of a Kola fruit or of a boiled Kaláya pulse. The pipe should in all cases be supplied with two Karnikás at its root, for the purpose of firmly securing it to the mouth of the Vasti (bladder). The quantity of the fluid to charge with in the case of an Asthápana Vasti is twelve Prasritas. The length of the pipe in respect of persons above seventy years of age should be like that in the preceding case but the quantity of the fluid to charge with should be made as in the case of a youth of sixteen. 6.