Alchemy and Metallic Medicines in Ayurveda

author: Vaidya Bhagwan Dash
edition: 2003, Concept Publishing Company
pages: 236
ISBN-10: 8170220777
ISBN-13: 9788170220770
Topic: Rasashastra

Introduction (3): Distinctive Features

Ayurvedic concepts of drug composition and drug action are equally applicable to both the drugs of vegetable origin and metallic as well as mineral drugs. All these ingredients possess rasa (taste), guna (attributes), virya (potency), vipaka (taste which emerges after digestion) and prabhava (specific action). All of them are composed of five mahabhutas, viz. Prthvi, ap, tejas, vayu and akasa. In spite of this, there are several distinctive features because of the five mahabhutas or basic elements in the composition of these drugs. In the ingredients of diet, rasa or taste is exceedingly manifested and the virya is in a latent from. In the vegetable drugs including animal products (notwithstanding exceptions), rasa (taste) is less manifested and virya is exceedingly manifested. In metallic and mineral products, rasa is latent whereas he virya or the protency is exceedingly potent. Therefore, therapeutically, metallic and mineral drugs are more useful than the vegetable and animal products.

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