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...

Part 2 - Purification of Gandhaka

First process.

Gandhaka is to he smelted with cow’s ghee, and immediately filtered through a piece of cloth into a pot, filled with milk, with which it is to be boiled for 24 minutes, and then washed with water. Gandhaka is thus purified and turns into lumps, leaving the particles of stone on the piece of cloth, the poison in the shape of husks being mixed with the ghee which separates itself from the sulphur. One who takes gandhaka, thus purified, need not be afraid of any reactionary after-effects, even though one takes unwholesome food at the time of taking the sulphur. Gandhaka, not properly purified, proves as harmful as a strong poison, especially if a bad diet is taken.

Second process.

Gandhaka is to be smelted and thrown, through a piece of cloth, into the juice of bhringaraja. It is then to be powdered and boiled with the same juice for some time. It is next to be smelted again, and thrown into the juice of bhringaraja. Gandhaka, thus purified, may be used for all purposes.

Third process.

Gandhaka, tankana, etc. are, first of all, to be washed with lime juice, which removes the dirt attached to their surfaces.

Cover the mouth of an earthen vessel by means of a piece of cloth tightly bound, and put sulphur upon this cloth, covering it with an earthen basin, the joint being closed with mud, etc., The vessel is then to be kept inside a pit made in the ground in such a way as to keep the brim of the vessel on the level of the surface of the earth, the hollow round the vessel being filled in with loose earth. A fire with sixteen pieces of cowdung cakes is now to be made all round the earthen basin. Sulphur, smelted by the fire and making its way through the cloth, will fall into the milk mixed with clarified butter, contained in the vessel, and will thus be purified.

Fourth process,

Gandhaka, with one fourth its quantity of tankana, is to be rubbed with the juice of matulungu, then powdered very carefully, and subjected to bhavana with castor oil in the intense heat of the sun. Thus purified, Gandhaka becomes fit for use in every way.

Conclusion:

Rasasastra category This concludes ‘Purification of Gandhaka’ 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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