The Sanskrit word moola literally means 'base' or 'root'. In this context, it means anus and rectum. The word .shodhana means 'purification'. Therefore, moola shodhana can be translated as the practice which 'purifies the anus and rectum'.
This technique has various other common names. It is called moola dhauti, which means anal cleansing'. It is also called ganesha kriya. Ganesha is the name of the plump elephant deity of India, and the word kriya means
'action'. Therefore, this name can be translated as the 'elephant action'. Ganesha is closely connected with mooladhara chakra (the psychic centre near the region of the anus). This is one reason for the name ganesha kriya. Also elephants wash themselves thoroughly with their trunk; possibly they also clean their anus in the same manner, at least externally. This practice is also called chakrikarma, which means the 'rotation practice'. It is so called because the finger is rotated within the anus and rectum.
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