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This English translation is extracted from Yoga Vasishta

Rama interposed and said: Please enlighten me as to the origin and destruction of mental and bodily disease. In answer to this Vasistha continued: The pains that afflict the body are called the secondary diseases, whilst the Vasana-s that affect the mind are termed mental or primary diseases. We have reached our present state through the absence of the transcendental Jnana, want of mastery over our sense-organs and the perpetual growth or desire and egoism in the mind and our delusion becomes intensified in us by forgetting the degradation of state through such causes. With the growth of such delusion, the mental disease also congeals in us like the snows of winter. When the intense desires of a person begin to manifest themselves externally and the Ajnana in him preponderates, he performs fearful Karmas and these in their turn breed bodily diseases. The body is further subject to diseases through such actions as the eating of unwholesome food, living in unhealthy sorroundings, doing things at unreasonable hours, injuries inflicted, association with the wicked, longing after improper things, evil desires, bad thoughts, the distention and contraction of the orifices of the Nadi-s in the joints, etc. and the interrupted flow of the beneficial Pranas throughout the body these cause the body to wither. These flourish in the form of diseases in the body, waxing and waning like the flood in a river during the different seasons. The body attracts the effects to itself according to the nature of its countless affinities, good or bad, whether in previous births or in the present one., Thus we see diseases, primary and secondary, arise through the fivefold Bhuta-s (elements).

Now listen, Oh Rama, to the manner in which the two forms of disease, primary and secondary, are destroyed in two ways. The wise say that primary disease, has two Subdivisions: samanya (ordinary) and sara (essential). The former includes the diseases incidental to the body, while the latter the rebirth to which men are subject. If the diseases which afflict this body return to their primal then they are destroyed. Their primary causes being (bad) thoughts, if these thoughts are destroyed, all bodily diseases will vanish. But the disease of rebirth, coming under the head of Sara, will never go except through Atma-jnana. Is it possible to suppose that the misapprehension of a serpent in a rope can be removed except through the discovery of the real rope? But those grievous diseases of the body which do not arise through the original cause can be extirpated by mantra-s, medicine and the many means used by men well versed in medical lore. I need not expatiate upon this subject any further here.

Here Rama asked Vasistha how mental diseases arise and how they are destroyed. Vasistha proceeded: When the Manas is agitated, then this body also follows in its wake. And when the body is agitated, then there is no proper perception of the things that are in one's way and Prana flies from its even path onto a bad road, staggering like an animal wounded by an arrow. Through such agitation, Prana, instead of pervading the whole body steadily and equally, vibrates everywhere at an unequal rate. Therefore the Nadi-s do not maintain a steady position, but quiver. Then the body which is the receptacle of food digested partially or completely, the Nadi-s are simply death, because of the fluctuation of the Prana-s. The food which settles down in this body amidst such commotion is transformed into incurable diseases. Thus through the primary cause (of the mind) the disease of body is generated. If this primary cause be annihilated at its root then all diseases will be destroyed. Now hear of the path by which diseases may be removed by the uttering of Mantra-s. Like base gold which, when placed in the crucible, is transmuted through alchemical processes into pure gold, the mind is rendered unfailingly pure through true, virtuous and pure actions and by serving the wise. In the mind purified thus there is unalloyed bliss. Is not the whole world exhilarated with joy when the soft and delicious moon begins to shed its silvery light? If the mind becomes purified with true Sattva guna, then Prana-Vayu will begin to circulate freely throughout the body, the food taken will be digested properly and hence no diseases will arise. I have thus described to you the path by which the two kinds of diseases can be destroyed.

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