It means distortion of the original form of Dravya and making it suitable for use.

According to the Kashyapa Samhita, it is defined as :-

कण्ठस्य कषणात् प्रायो रोगाणां वाSपि कषर्णात् । कषायशब्दः प्राधान्यात् सर्वयोगेषु कल्प्यते ।।

  1. It produces some kind of sensation in throat. (कण्ठस्य कषणात्)
  2. It helps in removing the diseases. (रोगाणां वाSपि कषर्णात्)


Kalpna means planning or yojana. The ayurvedic formulations include not only natural drugs, but also include processed drugs presented in various forms as well eg: churna (powder), swaras (juice), kalak(paste), vatti (small pitts), putpak (baked drugs) , aasav – arisht ( distilled or fermented alcoholic fermentations), ghrit ( ghee processed with drugs), tail (oil), modak ( bolus) etc prescribed in order to obtain desired actions of therapeutics or to obtain an easy form to administer. All these are dealt in Bhaishajya kalpana .

Nowadays, advanced techniques are available to extend presenting forms.

The main objective is to :-

1- Present the medicine in a convenient form. 2- Enable the medicine to be absorbed and bring about best therapeutic action. 3- Preserve them for long time and make them readily available all the time. 4- Prepare the medicine which can be administered through various routes eg: applicable externally, oral, rectal suppository, enema formulations , vaginal douches etc.


अथात: स्वरस: कल्क: क्वथा: च हिम फाण्टकी । ज्ञेया: कषायाः पंच एते लघवः स्युः यथोत्तरम्॥ (शा.सं.)

There are 5 simpler forms of extract of some principles of drugs in different proportions that is –

  1. Swaras ( juice )
  2. Kalaka ( Bruised coarsely powdered drugs or paste )
  3. Kwatha ( Decoction )
  4. Hima ( Cold infusion)
  5. Phanta ( Infusion)
  • They are enumerated in descending order with respect to their strengths eg: swaras is heavy(गुरु) and faant is light comparatively.
  • Acharya Sushruta had described six types of kashaya kalpna and consider Ksheer (गुरुतम – heaviest among all) as sixth kalpna.


Dravyas having madhur, amla, katu, tikta, kashaya rasa ( EXCEPT LAVAN RASA) are entitled to form the following formulation or kashaya kalpanas. i.e
1- Swaras
2- Kalka
3- Kwatha
4- Hima
5- Faant

पञ्च कषाययोन्य इति मधुरकषाय:, अम्लकषाय:, कटुकषाय:, तिक्तकषाय:, कषायकषाय: च इति तंत्रे संज्ञा । ( च .सू. ४/६)

As per Charak samhita, the kashaya kalpanas formed respectively by madhur, amla, katu, tikta, kashaya ras are named as –
a) Madhur kashaya
b) Amla kashaya
c) Katu kashaya
d) Tikt kashaya
e) Kashaya kashaya

कषाययोनयः पञ्च रसा लवण वर्जिताः।( अ.क ६/८)

Lavan is always found in dry state and being water soluble,so no such formulation is possible.



Any juice extracted from part of the plant using any mechanical force is called swaras. The juice of a plant can be obtained by cutting or tapping the root of a big tree and collecting the liquid oozing out of it.


अहता तत्त्क्षणाकृष्टात द्रव्यात क्षुण्णात समुद्धवेत। वस्त्रनिष्पीडितो यः स रसः स्वरस उच्यते ॥ (शा. सं .)

It is the fresh juice obtained on pounding a green medicinal plant and straining the liquid through a piece of cloth. The plant should be pure and unaffected by worms or climate. Whichever the day, the fresh herbs are collected, on the same day, the fresh juice from them has to be extracted. Example- Adarak swaras


कुडवं चूर्णितं द्रव्यं क्षिप्तं च द्विगुणे जले । अहोरात्रं स्थितं तस्मात् भवेद्वा रस उत्तम :॥ (शा सं)

In case of part of plant which is soft and dry in nature, the part should be crushed and soaked in twice the amount of water overnight. (Water: drug= 2:1) Next morning, the plant is macerated and filtered using a cloth. Example – Dhanyaka veeja


पुटपाकस्य कल्कस्य स्वरसो गृह्यते यतः । अतः तु पुटपाकानां युक्ति:उचयते मया ॥ (शा सं)

There are some plants which are either dry or fresh in nature but still we aren’t able to extract juice from them. For such plants, PUTPAK SWARAS VIDHI is used. Ex: vasa patra putpaak swaras


The herb is cut into small pieces and covered with big leaves of trees like Palasha and Vatta. The leaves are then tied with a thread. It is then covered with a thick layer of clean mud and made into bolus shape. It is dried under sunlight or subjected to mild fire till the bolus turns red hot. It is then left for cooling. Once cooled, the herb is collected after breaking it and the juice is extracted by pressing.


-2 Tola (24 ml) for 1st and 2nd method as they are guru (heavy) for digestion. -4 Tola (48ml) for 3rd method as they are comparatively laghu( light) for digestion.


द्रव्यमाद शिलपिष्टमं शुष्कं वा सजलं भवेत् । प्रक्षेपावाप कल्कः ते तन्मानं कर्ष संहितं। कल्के मधु घृतं तैलं द्वेयं द्विगुणमात्रया। सीतागुडो समौ दद्यात द्रवा देया चतुर्गुणाः॥

It is a simple paste of fresh or dry drugs, thoroughly pounded, and made into a viscous lump. Ex: nimb kalka



The fresh herb is pounded with the help of mortar and pestle till it becomes soft mass. If the herb part is dry like dried bark, then make it powderd form and soak in water for a few hours till it becomes soft. It is then made into a fine paste with the help of mortar. The general rule laid by scholars:

A- Kalka : sharkara/ guda = 1:1 B- Kalka: madhu/ tail/ghrit= 1:2 C- Kalka: water =1: 4 (Depending on the necessity)


Tola(12g) It has to be consumed immediately after preparation.


शुष्कपिष्टः सूक्षम्तानतव पटच्यु च चूर्णः । तस्य समस्त परित्यागादाप्लुत उपयोगाच्च कलकादभेदः॥ (अ. सं)

It is fine powder of completely dry drug. The dry substances are pounded well in a mortar and pestle and the powder thus formed should be sieved through a cloth. Ex: sitopladi churna, lawanbhaskara churana. It sould be used with adjuvants or vehicles such as ghee,oil,honey,milk or gou mutra in the following quantity:-

  • Churna: gudda=1:1
  • Churna: sharkara= 1:2
  • Churna : milk/water/gou mutra= 1:4
  • Churna: ghrit,tail,madhu= 1:2
  1. Sthula churana – course powder
  2. Sukshama churana – fine powder
  3. Atyanta suukshama – very fine powder


6g ( approx)


वह्नि तु क्वथितं द्रव्यं शृतं: आहु चिकित्सकाः॥ ( च .सू ४/२५)

Liquid boiled over agni and reduced water is called decoction. Small pieces of fresh drugs or pounded drugs are boiled over mild fire in a specific ratio and water is reduced to one fourth.


  • Soft drug (मृदु) : 4 times of water (1:4)
  • Medium drugs(मध्यम): 8 times of water (1:8)
  • Hard drugs(कठिन): 16 times of water (1:16)


Total drugs from a) 12g- 48g = 16 times water b) 48g- 192g = 08times water c) 192g- 768g = 04 times water (In all these cases, water will be reduced to ¼)


The Kwatha Kashaya are of 7 types with different strengths :-

  1. Paachan- The solution is reduced to ½ the quantity to digest aama.
  2. Deepan- The solution is reduced to 1/10 which stimulates agni.
  3. Shodhana – The solution reduced to 1/12 which evacuates excreta.
  4. Shaman – The solution reduced to 1/8 which modifies the severity of roga.
  5. Tarpan – The solution is heated upto boiling point which nourishes the dhatus.
  6. Kledana – It is a decoction where the solution is being reduced to ¼ which is hitt- kledkarakah
  7. Vishoshi- The solution is reduced to 1/16 which causes thirst when administered.

Vehicles for the use of decoction may be: salt, sugar honey, alkaline ashes, oil, ghee, medicinal powders, milk, gou-mutra etc.


1- Sugar a) Vata =1/4 b) Pitta = 1/8 c) Kapha =1/16

2- Madhu a) Vata = 1/16 b) Pitta =1/8 c) Kapha = ¼

3-Jira/gugul/kshar/lavan/shilajit/hingu/trikatu = 4g

4- Kshira/ ghrita/ taila/ guda/ kalka/ churna = 12g

MATRA :- 4 tola( 48ml) (madhyam matra) 8 tola( 96ml) Ex: Maharaasnaaadi kwatha, punarrvashtak kwatha.

Other Formulations under Kwatha

3(a) PRAMATHYA The ground pulp of 1 part of the drug boiled in 8 parts of water to the extent of liquid reduced to ¼ of its measures. 1 part kalka dravya+ 8 part water= kwatha reduced to ¼ part.

MATRA 50-100ml Ex: mushtaka pramathya

3(b) PAANIYA It is the weak decoction formed by boiling 1 part of the drug with 64 parts of water to be reduced to half the quantity of water. It is used during meals or when the patient feels thirsty. 1 part coarse powder of drug+ 64 part water= water reduced to ½ Ex: shadangapaniya

MATRA -100ml

3(c) KSHIRPAAK It is the preparation formed by boiling 1 part of medicine with 8 parts of milk and 32 parts of water till the water portion evaporates and the milk portion remains. 1- Drug = 1 part 2- Milk = 8 part 3- Water = 32 part (Boiled until milk part remains) Ex: arjunk-shirpaak, rason-kshirpaak

3(d) LAKSHA RASA 1 part laksha+ 6 part water is processes in dolayantra. Water is reduced to ¼ . it is then filtered through a clean cloth for 21 times.

Matra :- 2tola (24g)


It is the preparation formed by boiling water and – ¼ part evaporated = Vatahara ½ part evaporated = pittahara 1/3 evaporated = kaphahara Generally, boiled water when reduces to ½ is called ushnodka.

Useful as Amapachana and Vataanulomana.


१-द्रव्यादापुतस्थिता:तोयो प्रतप्ते निशि संस्थितात:। कषायो योअभिनिर्याति स शीतः समुदाहत॥ ( च.सू ४) – चक्रपाणि टीका में शौनक वचन । २-शीतः शर्बरीमुषितो मतः । ( अ.सं )

It is prepared by soaking powdered drugs in fresh, clean cold water with 1:6 ratio for whole night. Next day, the mixture is macerated and filtered through cotton cloth. Eg: dhanayaka hima

MATRA :- 8 tola (96ml)



It is an emulsion of fine powders of drugs with cold water prepared in an earthen container with a ratio of 1:4. The mixture is kept for 2-4hours. It is then churned well and lastly filtered. Ex: khajuraadi mantha MATRA 8 tola( 96ml)


It is the liquid preparation formed by thoroughly mixing( manually) 1 part of rice with 8 parts of water. The mixture is then kept for 2-3 hours and is churned well. Ex: tanulodaka MATRA 4 tola( 48ml)


In this preparation, juice of ripe fruits such as mango, pomegranate, oranges etc is taken and water (16 times) and sugar is added. Juice from raw fruits is extracted by making kalka and then squeezing . In both the conditions, water to be added is 16 times followed by addition of sugar. Ex: chandan panaka


क्षुष्णे द्रव्यपले सम्यगजलमुष्णं विनिक्षिपेत। मृत्पात्रे कुडव उन्मानं ततस्तु स्रवयत पटात् तस्य चूर्णदृव्यः फाँट: तन् मानं द्विपलो: मितम्। सितामधुगुड़दिश्च क्वाथावत्तत्र निक्षिपेत॥( शा.म.)

t is the infusion in hot water, prepared by immersing the pounded drugs in clean boiled water, with 1:4 ratio, for 12 hours, preferably in an earthern container. This is decanted and used just as decoctions are. Ex: panchkola phanta, sudarsana phanta

MATRA :- 8 tola( 96ml)

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