Drawing largely upon his long-practised experience as an eminent and first-rate physician who combined I himself the skill of a famous doctor and the intelligence of an equally famous scholar, Swami Sivananda, the towering sage of the Himalayas, presented to the world most popular works on themes of health hygiene, medicine, under such titles as Health and Long Life, Family Doctor Health and Happiness, Bazzar Drugs, Health and Hygiene, care of the eyes, a Boon to Diabetics place in the interest and needs works has its own distinctive place in interest and needs of common men and medical practitioners; but the present work entitled home remedies carries an added value all its own. Treating as it does of a wide range of simple household remedies form abrus to white pumpkin, and for all types of complaints beginning with indigestion and ending with liver and kidney troubles, scorpion sting, snake poison and care of the cow, this work is bound to be exceedingly useful for rural doctors and general practitioners as well. When these remedies were first published in the columns if the offical health journal of the Divine Life Society, incessant public demand was made for re-issuing these printed remedies in a book form which would act as a rare treasure for everyday reference and consultations. This work will not only fulfil that demand but also stand greatly enhanced in it importance and heightened in its usefulness by the addition of several helpful recipes.
Every one should possess an elementary knowledge of home remedies. Even this elementary knowledge of home remedies will go a long way in alleviating a diversity of home suffering and saving valuable lives. All cannot afford to pay the doctor’s bill and purchase costly patent medicines. The results achieved by “Chamberlain’s Cough Remedy” or “Venous Lightening Cure” can be very easily obtained by a decoction of the vegetable Ladies-finger at the cost of a few pies, or a lozenge made out of black pepper, suger-candy, liquorice and honey.
This book supplies a handy list of “Home Remedies” and a list of very useful, practical, potent prescription made up from them. There are very good prescription for diarrhoea, dysentery, fevers, malaria, indigestion, flatulence, constipation, debility, influenza, bronchitis, cough, scurvy, rheumatism, biliousness, liver, kidney, lung troubles, etc.
In places where there are no dispensaries, “Home Remedies” will come to your help, and guide you like an able Family physician.
Prakriti or mother Nature has been very, very kind and beneficent. She had placed valuable potent herbs and plants at your backyard, immediate neighbourhood and garden. Make use of these immensely benefited.
Equip your household, domestic medicine chest with preparations like dysentery powder, diarrhoea powder, cough lozenges constipations powder, pills etc. etc. your whole family will be immensely benefited.
Rural dispensaries can give you a great deal of medical relief at a very little cost if “household Remedies” or Bazzar medicines are intelligently, judiciously and largely used.
In the medical schools and colleges in India, Europe and America, the students should get a knowledge of Indian plants, herbs and drugs, during their course of study of Materia Medica. There is a great potency or potentiality in each of Indian herbs and plants. Many plants have very great therapeutic value.
Zandu pharmaceutical Works, Bombay and Alembic Chemical works, Baroda, are manufacturing many valuable preparations out of the Indian herbs and plants. Still big manufacturing and pharmaceutic chemists are needed in Indian and the whole at large who can make and standardize preparations and put them on the market.
Free Indian should start now many Ayurvedic laboratories in different parts of India to manufacture various Ayurvedic will surely have triumph over systems of medicine as the preparations are very potent, cheap and produce lasting effect and permanent cure.
A doctor should have a large Vedantic heart and broad tolerance. He should see good in very system of medicine. He should welcome good in every system and utilize it in the treatment of his patients. Every individual has a peculiar temperament. Allopathic drug that suits one temperament will not be suitable to another person. Homeopathy suits X. allopathy suits Y and Ayurveda suits Z. and as such a synthetic doctor can do more good to the patients by taking recourse to different systems. Every doctor should have a synthetic knowledge of the Indian plants and herbs. Should have a prefect knowledge of the Indian plants and herbs. Then they can attend well to the health of their families.
It is hoped that this handy will be of great help to the householders, rural doctors and the general practitioners as well.
Born on the 8th September, 1887, in the illustrious family of sage Appayya Dikshitar and several other renowned saints and savants, Sri Swami Sivananda had a natural flair for a life devoted to the study and practice of Vedanta. Added to this was and inborn eagerness to serve all and an innate feeling of unity with all mankind.
His passion for service drew him to the medical career; and soon he gravitated to where he thought that his service editing a health journal and wrote extensively on health problems. He discovered that people needed right knowledge most of all; dissemination at that knowledge he espoused as his own mission.
It was divine dispensation and the blessing of God upon mankind that the doctor of body and mind renounced his career and took to a life of renunciation to qualify for ministering to the soul of man. He settled down at Rishikesh in 1924, practiced intense austerities and shone as a great Yogi, saint and Jivanmukta.
In 1932 Swami Sivananda started the Sivanandasharm. In 1936 was born The Divine Life Society. In 1948 the yoga-Vedanta Forest Academy was organised. Dissemination of spiritual and training of people in yoga and Vedanta were their aim and object. In 1950 Swamiji undertook a lighting tour of India and Ceylon. In 1953 Swamiji convened a ‘World Parliament of Religious’, all over the world, belonging to all nationalities, religious and creeds. To read Swamiji’s works is to drink at the Fountain of Wisdom Supreme. On 14th July, 1963 Swamiji entered Mahasamadhi.
The central fact of Indian Culture is its conception of the spiritual Ideal. Its core and essence is the fundamental belief that the attainment of perfection is the sole purpose of man’s life. Thus the worth and value of all the other parts and utility in serving this central Ideal. The value of human birth and body was accepted because man’s body was recognized as the supreme instrument through which to strive for reaching life’s great consummation. The ancient Seers, the Rishis of wisdom, therefore, spared no pains in carefully evolving a great system of medicine to help to keep this precious instrument, i e., the human body, in perfect trim. The maintenance of the body in proper disease-free condition and perfect health was a sacred duty of man, for it condition and perfect health was a sacred duty of man, for it constituted the primary means of all attainments because, “health is the supreme root of attainment of the Good Life, of all wealth, fulfillment of cherished desires and ultimate Liberation”. The intuitive sages of India were in full awareness of this important fact for notwithstanding their lofty idealism they had the admirable faculty to be intensely practical and thorough.
The Indian Seers in the past have devoted special attention to the study of health, disease and therapeutics. They have worked upon Ayurveda or the science of life as another Veda.
Ayureveda believes in treatment by herbs which form its mainstay. The greater part of the treatment of Ayurvedic practitioner is by medicinal herbs. How very minute and how thoroughly scientific is their study of these herbs and their characteristics is amply evidenced by the scholarly treatises of these ancient scientists in which subjects they have given us the results of their admirable researches.
Besides this evidence the very fact of these herbal medicines continuing to be widely used with remarkable success even up to this day by quite modern Ayurvedic medical practitioners all over India, is a patent proof beyond and doubt about the high and enduring merits of this system of therapeutics.
The high development of herbal medication in this country had been ba direct outcome of the fact that due to her vastness and fertility, India had the unique advantage of possessing a wide range of climate geographical and geological conditions wherein came to flourish an infinite variety of numerous rare and precious herbs. The ancients seer scientists were ardent lovers of nature and dwellers of the sylvan forests and as such had wonderful scope for close observation of the rich herbal wealth of the vegetable kingdom. Theirs has been a critical examination and study of almost all the important medicinal herbs. Thus a good deal of literature deeply interesting and greatly informative, came into being on this subject is the illustrious author Charaka whose invaluable work, the “Charaka-Samhita” is still accepted as the standard classical work on medicine. It forms by far the most exhaustive treatise and in it Maharshi Charaka gives nearly fifty different groups of medicinal herbs naming ten herbs under each group. These fifty groups or ganas he considers as being quite sufficient for the purpose of the average medical practitioner. Another great authority the able author Sushruta, who is ranked equal with Charaka, has mentioned about 760 herbs which he has divided into thirty seven ganas or groups in accordance with certain common characteristics. His masterly work was translated into Arabic as early as twenty centuries ago somewhere about 800 A.D. Later translation into Latin and German also appeared. Charaka’s works too were translated into Arabic and references are made in several Latin works of eminent Western physicians.
The grouping of these medicines by these writers reveal an astonishing knowledge of pathology and diseases therapeutics of the grouping are included Anaesthetic, Anticolic, Anti-fat, Antasthmatic, Anticholeric, Antiscorbutic, Antihypnotic, Anuretic, Antipyretic, Antipsoric, Antiphlegmagogue, Antispasmodic, Astringent, Aphrodisiac, Antitoxic, Cathartic, Calmative, Cholagogue, Carminative, Constringent, Cosmetic, Demulcent, Diaphoretic, Diuretic, Emetic, Drastic, Emmenagogue, Epispastic, Expectorant Epulotic, Frigorific, Fat-producer, Flatus-Producer, Fat-Former, Galactagogue, Haemostatic, Hypnotic, Hydragogue, Liquefacient, Lithonlytic, Laxative, Parturifacient Phlegmagogue Purgative, Inebrient Rejuvenascent, Refrigerant, Rubefacient, Restorative Sialagogue Sedative Semen improver Stypic, tonic, Vermibarous Stomachic Spermatophytic, Voice-improver etc. A disciple of the great Charaka Agenivesga by name enumerates many more classes of medicines besides those mentioned above. The Bhava Prakasha of Bhava Misra (another important writer on medicinal herbs) further adds certain valuable medicines. New light is thrown upon a number of these medicines in the “Aatankatimirabhaskara” a comparatively recent work of considerable size by some Ayurveda Acharya belonging to the eighteenth century. An even more recent author Pundit Godbole had published in the later half of last century his “Nighantaratnakara” epitomizing all the previous works on Materia Medica with nearly fifty new herbs added, as the result of fresh research.
The high potency and curative value of the Indian medicinal herbs have for long been well recognized in countries outside India. Even so as far back as previous to the Christian Era, ancients like happocrates recommended Indian herbs in their medical treatises. The Greek physician Dioscordes (100A.D.) speaks well of the numerous Indian plants the medicinal virtues of which he had thoroughly investigated before incorporating them into his famous Materia Medica. Later on the physicians who came in the train of the Mohammedan conquerors were quick to perceive the great potency and worth of the Indian medicines and began to make use of them without hesitation. Mohammed Akbar Arzani the Court Physician of Emperor Aurangazeb and Nuruddin Mohammed Abdulla Shirazee the personal Hakeem to the great Shah Jehan have both included numerous efficacious medicines from the Ayurveda Materia Medica into their famous works on medicine. And a glance at the “allopath’s Pharmacopia” today will be enough proof that the Indian herb has fully lived upto its reputation as potent healers.
There is a special reason why medicinal herbs constitute the most invaluable sovereign remedy for every ailment it is because they contain in them the curative element in its most vital, potent and withal easiest state. This is brought about by the following factors the herbs are God sent apparatuses endowed with the unique capacity for converting valuable inorganic earth salts chemicals and minerals into organic substances eminently suitable for complete absorption into the human system and fail to go to the root of the trouble and effect a radical cure. In herbs we have vital substances that actually get absorbed into the very core of our tissues. The essence of herbs is the disease and remove it in toto as they are assimilated into the cell of the human system. They are also in a way in predigested form the Ayurveda Materia Medica into their famous works on medicine. And a glance at the “Allopath’s Pharmacopia” today will be enough proof that the Indian herbs has fully lived upto its reputation as potent healers.
There is a special reason why medicinal herbs constitute the most invaluable sovereign remedy fore every ailment. It is because they contain in them the ‘curative element’ in its most vital, potent and withal easiest state. This is brought about by the followings factors; the herbs are god sent apparatuses endowed with the unique capacity for converting valuable inorganic earth silts chemicals and mineral into organic substances eminently suitable for complete absorption into the human system. The cells in the human body are vital tissues. Chemical drugs are inert matter. They are never fully absorbed into the human system and fail to go the root of the trouble and effect a radical cure. In herbs we have vital substances that actually get absorbed into the very core of our tissues. The essence of herbs is the vital substance. These remedies go to the very root of the disease and remove it in toto as they are assimilated into the cell of the potent rays of the sun and the gases of the atmosphere. Thus these herbal essences get of the atmosphere. Thus these herbal essences get purified and irradiated during the hours of day light and in addition, store up the healing potencies of the lunar lays at night, the latter infuse the herbs with marvellous curative properties. Furthermore, the forms the medicine par excellence as it is infused by a life principle drawn out of the power of the Panchabhutas or the five fundamental element, i.e., earth water, fire air and either. The physical frame of man is a combination for administration. The secret of the marvellous and almost miraculous curative potencies of the herbs is the presence in them of a supraterrestrial force, i.e., the solar energy. The sun is the source of comic energy. It is the source of the mightiest healing power known to mankind. Hindu seers have regarded the sun as Divine in nature. And the only substance known in nature that possesses the capacity of stock piling solar energy in the form of a usable essence is the plant chlorophyll. Precisely therefore herbs are said to posses divine potency termed by Hindus as Divya Shakti.
The study of herbs is of absorbing interest. Their administration is also simple, compared to the elaborate and complicated process of other pharmacopias. It is now an established fact that the science of herbal cure is not been put to serve tests by the Rishis and practitioners of the past whose researches and practical therapeutical findings have been minutely recorded for us in their illuminating treatises. Therein we find their minute study of their herbs; their characteristics, habitat conditions for their healthy growth their appearance the time of highest potency etc. the proper season for gathering the herbs the localities form which they should be collected and the right method of processing them, isolating the active principle and preserving it, are all accurately and scientifically detailed. One noteworthy point in the naming of these Indian medicinal herbs is that in great many cases their very names are descriptive of the specific character or prominent appearance of the plant. This becomes an effective means for the easy identification of the particular herb. Thus for instance, Acorus Calamus had the name Ugra-gandha (strong-odour), for it is characterized by very pungent smell. The name Vasta-nabha (calf’s navel) describes the plant Aconitum ferox because its root resembles the umbilical cord of a calf. Tribulus Terrestris is referred to by the significant name trikantaka (three-thorned) as its fruit contains three prickles. Ricinus Communis goes by the name Chitrabija (spotted seed) due to its seed being speckled by white or brown patches. Datura Alba is named Ghanta-pushpa (bell-flower) due to the shape of its flowers. The long and cylindrical podded Cassia Fistula gets the name Deerghafala (long fruit) and plant Sapindus Emarginatus is called Bahuphena (very foamy) because its berries produce a rich soapy lather when rubbed and shaken with water.
A full study of all the herbal medicines is not a possibility in the introductory note. The interested reader can gather some idea of the precious gems that are to be found in the mine of this Ayurvedic Materia Medica.
Indian has ever been evolving art after art, science after science as her contribution to the common heritage of all the nations of the world. Her greatest gift to the world is the gift of the spiritual science of Self-perfection. Next to it I would place this science of Life, the Ayur-Veda as a precious gift to be carefully developed and broadcast to all nations. It is a national duty of every Indian.
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