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Understanding Our Somatic Personality

If each of us live according to our somatic personalities, life energy becomes unblocked and released in the body. One’s somatic personality is based on the principles of Ayurveda, an Indian healing system (the literal translation of the Sanskrit term means ‘Science of Life’).

The union of three streams forms one’s somatic personality:

  • Genes from parents (genetics)

  • The influence of ancestors, family members, and natural and social environments, which modify the genetic expression in an individual (epigenetics)

  • Personal experiences

Parts of the somatic personality, the aspects shaped by the environment and family, can be modified, or changed. However, the original personality remains the same throughout life. In the tradition of ayurveda, there are three types of personalities. No one has only one personality. All of us have components of all three personalities, but one of them is dominant.

These three personalities are each a combination of two of the five primary ayurvedic elements: earth, water, fire, air, and space. Which of these five elements is dominant in one’s personality is determined by how each of us responds to the world through our feelings? A combination of two elements forms one type of personality. In somatofulness, the goal is to fully recognize and express one’s dominant personality, with the help of the other two non-dominant personalities.

The formation of three personalities

When earth and water elements combine, the Earth's personality is born. The parasympathetic nervous system is more active in this personality. People with this personality are caregivers, managers, and negotiators. An Earth personality has serotonin and oxytocin as the dominant hormones.

When water and fire elements combine, the Fire personality is born. This personality is a combination of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. People with this personality are action-takers and they tend to become pioneers, leaders, and executives. A Fire personality has testosterone and nor-epinephrine as the dominant hormones.

When the air and space elements combine, the Wind personality is born. In this personality, the sympathetic nervous system is more active. People with this personality are creative and like to explore. A Wind personality has dopamine and adrenaline as the dominant hormones.

Using these principles, we can understand our personalities, either by self-observation or with the help of a questionnaire.

All three personality types can express themselves in three different ways

  • Inertia: When a personality is not able to move forward to experience its potential, it is in a state of inertia. For example, the Wind personality may be lost in a complex web of thoughts and anxiety, rather than becoming creative. A Fire personality may be stuck in anger, rather than leading in the world. The Earth personality may be too attached and become possessive, rather than taking care of themselves and others. Inertia is related to adrenaline.

  • Action: Action is vital in all three personalities because they move toward fulfilling themselves when action is taken. Action is related to norepinephrine.

  • Harmony: When a specific personality is active and experiences balance with both inner and outer environments, there is harmony. Harmony is related to estrogen.


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