Rasa Jala Nidhi, vol 2: Minerals (uparasa)

by Bhudeb Mookerjee | 1938 | 28,803 words | ISBN-10: 8170305829 | ISBN-13: 9788170305828

This second volume of the Rasa-jala-nidhi deals with the purification, incineration and medicinal uses of various minerals (uparasa), as well as preventing faults due to misuse. It is continued in the third volume which deals with the various metals. The Rasa-jala-nidhi (“the ocean of Iatrochemistry, or, chemical medicine) is a compendium of Sansk...

First process.

Shilajatu is purified, if it is rubbed for one day with any one of the following and then dried:—cow’s milk, decoction of triphala, and juice of bhringa-raja.

Second process.

Shilajatu is to be cut into pieces and washed off with water for the removal of dirts. It is then to be exposed to a smoke emitted by burnt aguru, nimba leaves, guduchi, adhaki, java, and ghee. It is then to be immersed for three hours in hot water or decoction of dashamula or triphala. It is next to be rubbed and filtered through a piece of cloth, and kept in an earthen pot, exposed to the sun. The dense and cream-like substance collected on the surface of the liquid will have to be taken out and kept in another pot. The process is to be repeated as many times as necessary, until the whole of the pure shilajatu is taken out. The sediment is to be rubbed again with hot water and again exposed to the sun, the dense and cream-like substance being taken out in the foregoing manner. This cream-like substance, which is nothing but pure shilajatu, may thus be collected in two months. Shilajatu, thus purified, may be used for medicinal purposes. If thrown upon fire, after purification, it will emit no smoke and will have the appearance of penice. For the purpose of increasing the strength of this shilajatu, it may be subjected to bhavana with juices or decoction of drugs which can pacify the three doshas.

Third process.

Shilajatu is first of all to be washed off with water, and dried. It is then to be subjected to bhavana with decoctions or juices of vegetable drugs to be decided upon after consideration of the nature of the disease, the patient, his habits, and the food he is accustomed to. Such a decoction is prepared by boiling in an earthen pot the vegetable drug, equal in quantity to the shilajatu, meant to be purified, with eight times its weight of water, to be reduced to one fourth the quantity of this water (or double the quantity of the shilajatu). The shilajatu is now to be dissolved in the hot decoction, duly filtered by means of a piece of cloth, and dried. The process is to be performed for seven times in respect of each kind of decoctions. Such a shilajatu is to be administered to a patient who has already been soothed (by taking clarified butter mixed with a little of rock-salt), duly purified by purgation, and has taken for three days clarified butter, prepared with bitters (such as panchatikta-ghrita). Such a patient is to take shila-jatu with a decoction of triphala on the first day, with a juice of patola on the second day, and with a decoction of jasti-madhu on the third day; the order being repeated so long as it is considered necessary to let the patient take shilajatu. Taking of shilajatu in this way proves to be very useful.

Fourth process.

In order to free shilajatu from impurities due to foreign matters and contaminations caused by worms, flies, and poisonous drugs, it should be dissolved in iron pots with a solution of juices of nimba, guduchi mixed with clarified butter, and java in the manner described below:—

In the hot weather, when the sky is free from clouds and there is no wind, four pots made of black iron are to be placed in a level piece of land, heated by the sun’s rays. Excellent shilajatu is to be kept in one of these pots and dissolved with twice its weight of hot water and half its weight of the solution referred to above. This solution is to be duly filtered through a piece of cloth and exposed to the heat of the sun, which will cause a black cream-like thing, rise on the surface of the solution. This creamlike substance is to be removed into another pot and mixed with some hot water. The heat of the sun will cause a cream-like substance rise at the surface of the liquid. This substance is to be removed into a third pot and mixed with hot water, as before. The cream-like substance rising on the surface of the third pot will have to be removed into the fourth pot. The process is to be continued until the whole of the dirts separate from the pure substance and subside at the bottom. The pure cream-like substance, which is shilajatu proper, is to be taken out carefully, to the exclusion of the water and sediments.

Fifth process.

In a hot weather, black Iron shilajatu is to be dissolved with decoction of triphala, duly filtered and dried. The process is to be performed for three times. The same process is to be performed for three times each with dasha-mula, guduchi, bala, patola, madhuka, and cow’s urine, respectively. The shilajatu is next to be saturated with milk for one time, and dried. It is next to be saturated for seven times with a decoction of all (or as many as can be procured) of the following combined:—kakoli, kshira-kakoli, meda, mahameda, bidari, kshira-bidari, shatabari, draksha, riddhi, vriddhi. rishabha, jatamansi, mundiri, white jira, black jira, sapta-parni, prisniparni, rasna, puskara-mula, chitraka root, danti, gaja-pippali, indra-java, chavya, musta, katu-rohini, karkata-shringi, and patha.

The shilajatu is next to be subjected to bhavana with a juice or decoction of each of the undermentioned drugs, called the shala-saradi:—

Shala, pita-shala, nata (?) karanja, visha-karanja, khadira, sveta-chandana, rakta-chandana, garda-bhanda (gaya-asvatha), arjuna, white lodhra, red lodhra, dhava, asana, shirisha, aguru, and kaliya (pita chandana). These drugs, taken together, are called the shala-saradi. They can cure diseases due to an exeess of phlegm, spermatorrhoea, gulma, piles, leprosy, obesity, and jaundice. The shila-jatu is to be subjected to bhavana at night, and dried during day time. The rule regarding the quantity of the drugs mentioned above is this that the quantity of each of these drugs will be equal to that of the shila-jatu and that each of them is to be boiled in eight times its weight of water, reducible to one eighth (or one fourth, according to a different practice).

Sixth process.

Shila-jatu is purified, if it is dissolved with a solution of kshara, amla (non-metallic acid), and cow’s urine, and then filtered by means of a piece of cloth, and dried.

Seventh process.

Shilajatu is purified, if it is dissolved, in an iron pot, with milk, decoction of triphala, and decoction of bhringaraja, respectively, and dried each time it is so dissolved.

Eighth process.

Shilajatu is purified, if it is subjected to a hot vapour for one hour, by means of a Svedani-yantra containing kshara, amla, and guggulu.

Test of purified shilajatu.

Shilajatu, properly purified, will burn without emitting any smoke. When sufficiently roasted, it will assume the appearance of penice. If thrown into water by means of the points of a grass, it will sink in the shape of thread.

Use of purified shilajatu.

Purified shilajatu, taken with milk and a suitable quantity of incinerated iron (dose of iron—tola a day) has the effect of increasing vitality, curing and preventing senility, strengthening the system, and increasing memory and retentive faculties in one who takes a sufficient quantity of milk (and of course a salutary and congenial vegetable diet[1]). Shilajatu produces an appreciable effect, if it is taken for one week; it produces better result if it is taken for three weeks; and if taken for seven weeks, it produces much better results. One who takes shilajatu for six weeks, observing all the regulations to be followed with regard to the use of medicines meant for the cure and prevention of senility, lives a happy and healthy life for 100 years. Dose of shila-jatu—one tola a day is the ordinary dose; two tolas a day produces a better effect, and four tolas a day produces an excellent effect.

While taking shilajatu, one should avoid foods which are fried, roasted (with or without oil), sour, fermented, and heavy. The man who takes shilajatu should abstain from taking, once for all, kulattha gram, in as much as the latter can corrode even stone, and has therefore a property which destroys the effect which shilajatu produces upon the human system.

The man who takes shilajatu should avoid the following, not only during the period he takes it, but also during an equal period of time just preceding and following that period;—physical exercise, exposure to the sun’s rays, exposure to wind, things which trouble the mind, heavy food, food which gives rise to inflammation of the body, i.e., food which is sour, pungent, fried with or without oil, fermented, and food which is difficult to digest.

He should drink rain water, carefully collected during the rainy season, and water from big wells and fountains. He should avoid, once for all, kulattha gram, kakamachi, and flesh of pigeons.

Footnotes and references:

[1]:

Milk proves injurious to the system, if it is taken with such things as meat, fish, sours, beans, etc. (See Charaka and other books on Indian Hygiene).

Conclusion:

Rasasastra category This concludes ‘Purification of shilajatu’ included in Bhudeb Mookerjee’s Rasa Jala Nidhi, vol 2: Minerals (uparasa). The text includes treatments, recipes and remedies and is categorised as Rasa Shastra: an important branch of Ayurveda that specialises in medicinal/ herbal chemistry, alchemy and mineralogy, for the purpose of prolonging and preserving life.

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