The Four Temperaments
One of the main principles in Traditional Persian Medicine (TPM) is the recognition of each person’s uniqueness, known as the Four Temperaments Mizaj. It describes a person’s physical characteristics (the constitution), plus their psychological, emotional and spiritual attributes. It also assesses personality strengths and weaknesses, and includes the predisposition (risk factors) for particular disorders. This is why some of us are morning people, while others are night owls. Each of us have our habits, likes, dislikes, interests and skills. All of these features, characteristics and quirks make up our unique Temperament.
Although each person’s Temperament is as unique as their fingerprint, TPM divides people into four main categories: Melancholic, Choleric, Sanguine and Phlegmatic, with a dominant and sub-dominant Temperament. Each Temperament has qualities of heat, coldness, moistness and dryness, with every combination having an overall quality as indicated in the diagram below.