From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Sometimes transliterated as: Dhatu, DhAtu, Dhaatu

Dhātu literally means ‘that which exists in all’.

Dhātu Generally

Metals dug out from the bowels of earth like gold and silver as also precious stones are also known as ‘dhātu’.

Dhātu as per Darśanas

This word is used in several senses. In the darśanas or treatises on philosophy it stands for the pañcabhutas or the five elements, viz., earth, water, fire, air and sky or space or ether.

Dhātus of Body

In the ancient medical sciences, seven dhātus which sustain our body[1] are mentioned. They are:

  1. Rasa - chyle
  2. Asṛk or rakta - blood
  3. Mānsa - flesh
  4. Medas - fat
  5. Asthi - bone
  6. Majjā - marrow
  7. Śukra - semen

Dhātu as per Sanskrit Grammar

In Sanskrit grammar, the word means the root form of a verb, like bhu.[2]


  1. It is called as ‘sapta-dhātus’.
  2. Bhu means to exist.
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore