By Dr Renita D’Souza
Rudraksha is a traditional Ayurvedic medicinal plant. Beads of rudraksha are well known for its amazing power to relieve stress, lack of concentration, pain, anxiety, depression, epilepsy, diabetes, hypertension etc. Research studies have proved electromagnetic properties of rudraksha beads activate the body’s energy wheel and helps to heal chronic diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, neurological problems, psychological problems, gynaecological problems, insomnia, rheumatism etc. (A)
Rudraksha beads are used in several forms to obtain its therapeutic effects. It is worn either on the arm, wrist and other parts of the body, taken orally and also used for external application. These beads are also called blueberry beads as the ripe fruit is blue in color.
Botanical Name – Elaeocarpus ganitrus
Family – Elaeocarpaceae
E. sphaericus K. Schum
Ganitrus sphaericus Gaertn
‘Rudraksha’ word meaning
In Sanskrit word ‘Rudra’ is the synonym for Lord shiva and ‘Aksha’ means eyes.
English – Ultrasum Bead Tree, Wooden Begger bead
Hindi – Rudraksa, Rudraki, Rudraks, Rudraksh
Kannada – Rudrakshi mara, Rudrakshi
Malayalam – Rudraksha, Rudraksam
Tamil – Rudraksha, Ruttiratcam
Telugu – Rudraksha, Rudraksi
Assam – Rudrai, Sotralangskai, ludrok, Udrok
Bengali – Rudrakhya
Marathi – Rudraksh
Punjabi – Rudraksha
Oriya – Rurdrakhyo
Elaeocarpus ganitrus is a moderate sized evergreen tree. Leaves are simple, alternate, slightly dentate, oblong lanceolate in shape, glabrous, shining on upper side, dull leathery below. Young leaves are light green then turn to dark green at the time of maturity and old leaves are red in color. Flowers are white in color, appear in dense racemes which arise from axils of old leaves. Fruits are drupe, bluish purple in color, globose or obovoid in shape and encloses seed which is hard, globular, longitudinally grooved and tubercled. Seed is commonly called as bead. (B)
Elaeocarpus ganitrus is found from the Gangetic plain in the foothills of the Himalayas to China, South and Southeast Asia, Australia, Guam and Hawaii. In India it is mainly found in West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Western Ghats.
Read – Use Of Gems In Ayurveda
Taste (Rasa) – Sour
Potency – Hot – Ushna
Ruchya – improves taste
Shiroarthi shamana – relieves headache
Bhutagraha vinashanam – wards off evil spirits
Effect on Tridoshas
Balances Vata and Kapha dosha
Rudraksha, Shivaksha – Rudraksha beads signify the eyes of Lord Shiva.
Bhutanashana – wards off evil
According to Hindu Mythology Origin of Rudrakasha Tree
As mentioned in ‘Shiva Purana’, Lord Shiva was meditating for the health and prosperity of all living beings. When he opened his eyes, teardrops fell on the earth and turned into seeds which later grew up to form rudraksha tree.
Elaeocarpus ganitrus possesses sedative, hypnotic, tranquillizing, anticonvulsive, antiepileptic, anti hypertensive, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, CNS activities, antiasthmatic, hydrocholeretic, antidepressant, antidiabetic, cardio stimulating activities.
Types of rudraksha
Based on the number of Mukhis (Clefts or furrows)present on the surface of rudraksha beads, there are different types. Each one bestows with specific therapeutic effects.
1 mukhi – Used in anxiety, heart problems, eye problems, Tuberculosis, paralysis, bone pain etc. Enlightens the super-consciousness and improves concentration.
2 mukhi – Used in chronic asthma, renal failure, impotency, stress, anxiety, depression, eye problems, negative thinking, mental disorder, lack of concentration, hysteria, intestinal disorder etc. Blesses the wearer with ‘UNITY’.
3 mukhi – Used in depression, schizophrenia, blood pressure, jaundice, mental disability, fever or weakness, menstrual stress, mood swings etc.
4 mukhi – Improves blood circulation, treats asthma, memory loss, cough, respiratory problems, mental disorders etc. By wearing this, it bestows the power of creativity, enhances memory power and intelligence.
5 mukhi – Used in blood pressure, diabetes, piles, stress, displeasure, mental disability, neurotic, heart and maladjustment problems etc.
6 mukhi – Used in gynecological problems, epilepsy etc. Defends from emotional trauma of wordy sorrows, imparts wisdom, learning and knowledge.
7 mukhi – Treats asthma, impotency, pharyngitis, respiratory confusion, foot related diseases, pains and aches etc. Beneficial for those suffering from finance and mental set-up.
8 mukhi – Used in stomach aches, skin diseases, stress, anxiety etc. Helps to tackle obstacles and gives success in all works.
9 mukhi – Treats strange diseases and by wearing this physically it bestows a lot of energy, powers, dynamism and fearlessness.
10 mukhi – Removes mental insecurity, hormonal imbalance, whooping cough etc. It acts as a shield on one’s body and ward off evil.
11 mukhi – Relieves body pain, backache, helps to recover from chronic alcoholism and liver diseases. Wearing this on your body it bestows wisdom, right judgement, fearlessness and success.
12 mukhi – Used in bone diseases, osteoporosis, rickets, mental disability, anxiety etc. Wearers gain the strength of the sun to rule and to move continuously with brilliant radiance. Increases self esteem and motivation.
13 mukhi – Used in muscle dystrophies, bestows with honor and fulfills all the earthly desires.
14 mukhi – Provokes a sixth sense organ by which the wearer foresees his future.
15 mukhi – Used in skin diseases, recurring miscarriage, still birth etc
16 mukhi – Cures leprosy, cor-pulmonale, tuberculosis, lung diseases etc.
17 mukhi – Best used in memory lapse, body functional disorders etc.
18 mukhi – Prevent loss of power, mental imbalance etc.
19 mukhi – Relieves disorders of blood, spinal cord etc.
20 mukhi – Nullifies the problem of eyesight and snake bites.
21 mukhi – eradicates every form of disease.
Trijuti Rudraksha – is supreme for keeping internal as well as external body disorders at bay.
Gauri shankar – Used in problems related to sex and behavior (Read more)
- Pox is relieved by taking rudraksha soaked in jambira juice with cow’s milk.
- In smallpox, rudraksha beads in equal quantities with black pepper are crushed and consumed with stale water.
- In asthma, powdered rudraksha fruits are mixed with warm water and given two to three times a day.
- Rudraksha bark and leaves juice is used to treat sunstroke and fever.
- Rudraksha decoction taken regularly along with honey is used as a blood purifier.
- In cough, equal quantities of rudraksha beads, bark of vasa and haritaki are made into decoction and consumed along with honey.
- Rudraksha beads kept under the pillow induce good sleep. It is boiled with milk and this liquid applied over the eyelid also helps in getting good sleep.
- Rudraksha beads along with triphala churna and guggulu are used in piles.
- In mental disorders, 4 or 6 mukhis rudraksha beads are boiled with milk and consumed.
- To improve sexual power, Rudraksha paste is applied over the forehead.
- Infertility – One rudraksha with 10 grams of Sarpakshi is cooked and pestle with milk of one colored cow. This when taken during menstrual period enables even a sterile woman to conceive.
- Gargling with rudraksha decoction helps to relieve tastelessness.
- Rudraksha is kept overnight with water in an earthen pot. This water consumed on an empty stomach is the best remedy for brain fever.
- In Anxiety, 5 mukhi rudraksha is held in the right palm for 10 minutes and this helps to regain confidence.
Antidepressant – A research study conducted to evaluate antidepressant activity of rudraksha fruit has proved significant antidepressant activity Elaeocarpus ganitrus fruit extract on albino mice. In high doses it acts as sedative.
Part Used, Dose
Powder – 3 -5 grams
Raja Nighantu – Amraadivarga
Kingdom – Plantae
Order – Oxalidales
Family – Elaeocarpaceae
Genus – Elaeocarpus
Species: E. ganitrus