Talk:Part Played by Dridhabala in Caraka Samhita

From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

Apart from the Kalpasthānas, Siddhisthānas and the 17 chapters of Cikitsāsthāna which are from the pen of Dridhabala, it is very difficult to say whether Dridhabala touched upon any other portion of the Caraka Samhita. It is a matter for present research scholars. It is possible to distinguish and differentiate the styles of Agnivesa, Caraka and Dridhabala.

In addition to this, the new concepts including medical as well as general topics might have gradually crept in. If it could be differentiated, it would be an eminent knowledge on the development and history of medical science and its concept. It also can give a detailed information about the interpolations, additions and redactions, which can be marked out and assigned to different persons or periods. Some scholars are of the opinion that even small surgical references given in various chapters in Caraka Samhita were taken by Drdhabala. This debate on minute scrutiny will not hold good as the detailed descriptions of surgical operations are confined to the chapters which were restored and redacted by Drdhabala himself.

In some chapters, we find that there are some verses which though running concurrently with the subject of the chapter are not quite in tune with the matter taken as a whole, e. g. description of children and patients in Sutra XI[1] and some verses in Vimana III,[2] with the exception of the first instance, the matter contained in these verses is not found in the summary. Even the re-capitulatory verses given at the end of the chapters do not match with them. Hence some may be led to conclude that these are from Drdhabala or even later interpolations though nothing conclusive can be said about these. It is very difficult to mark out such verses, for we do not get any clue from the index of chapters.

Although the numbers and headings of the chapters have been given, there is no mention of the number of verses in each chapter. The absence of this enumeration of verses in each chapter might have encouraged interpolators to introduce their own verses and pass them on as the original ones. This subject is a matter for deep and interesting research for future scholars.


  1. It refers to sutra number 56, 63
  2. It refers to sutras number 40-44, 46-48
  • The Caraka Samhita published by Shree Gulabkunverba Ayurvedic Society, Jamnagar, India