AYURVEDIC MATERIA MEDICA PDF
PDF | Nearly two hundred Ayurvedic drugs of plant origin have bee introduced in he Unani material medica, the names of most of the drugs have been adopted. 5 days ago Request PDF on ResearchGate | The materia medica of ayurveda | Traditional systems of medicine make use of a wide spectrum of natural. DR. K. M. NADKARNI'S. INDIAN. MATERIA. MEDICA. With Ayurvedic, Unani- Tibbi, Siddka,.4ttopathic,. Homeopathic, Naturopathic &- Home Remedies.
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AYURVEDIC DRUGS IN UNANI MATERIA MEDICA. M. Ali Full Text. The Full Text of this article is available as a PDF (K). Materia Medica of Ayurveda - Ebook download as PDF File .pdf), Text File .txt) or read book online. Some idea about the depth of knowledge the system possesses in the field of mineral, materia medica can be formed from the detailed drug.
After sixteenth century, several nighantus were composed. These are tabulated below: Name of the Sno nighantu Author Time Salient feature 1. Bhavapraksha Bhavamishra 16th Description of rasa karpura. Raj nighantu Madhava 17th Special account on Dravyaguna 3. Siva kosha Shiva dutta 17th Self explanatory 4. Nighantu sangraha Raghunatha 17th 5. Shaligrama Shaligrama 17th Account of modern drugs Vanaushadi 6.
Kaiadeva 15th Table 2. It shows work on nighantus written after 16th century. Works done in 20th century are tabulated below: Sno Name of the nighantu Author Salient feature 1. Vanaushadi darpana Gupta 2. Vanaspati shastra Thakur Account on flora of Gujarat. Vanaushadi chandrodaya Bhandari Ten volumes 4. Nighantu sangraha Raghunatha 5. Dravyaguna vigyanama Yadavji Account of rare drugs 6. Dravyaguna vigyana Sharma Chemical composition 7. Aushadi shastra Divedi Authentically work 8.
Glossary of vegetable drugs Singh Table 3. It shows work on nighantus written in the 20th century. Vedic era is considered to be golden period for Ayurveda.
Onset of Mogul and British Empire was major setback to Ayurveda. Although Ayurvedic practice was banned in India but during the British Empire, Indian medicinal plants were subjected to scientific investigations and several texts were composed. Materia Medica composed during the British Empire was based on ancient Indian medical knowledge but work on chemistry of the Indian medicinal plants was salient feature.
Some modern works are tabulated below: Sno Name of the work Author 1. Medicinal Plants of India and Pakistan Dastur 2. Indian Herbal Pharmacopoeia Anonymous 4. Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia Anonymous 5. Herbs Bone 7. Handbook of Ayurvedic Medicinal Plants Kapoor 8.
Directory of Indian Medicinal Plants. Anonymous Chopra, Chopra, Handa 9. Indigenous Drugs of India and. Glossary of Indian Medicinal Plants. Chopra, Nayar and. The name of some of these works we know by coming across them in commentaries and compilations.
The reason is mostly economic because the texts which are included in the prospectus are studied in institutions and get priority in publication while others lag behind. The result is that to-day teachers and students are not acquainted with even the names of such texts what of going through them. This is an encyclopaedic work having Ayurveda Saukhya as a compOl1ent. Ayurveda Sauklzya too is a voluminous work dealing with several aspects of Ayurveda.
The present volume deals with the portion of Materia Medica which is generally known as NighalJ.! In , when I was editing the Mlidhava Dravyagu1 a, I had the opportunity to see a manuscript of the Ayurveda Saukhya. It is also to be noted that though In other portions, source books are quoted explicItly, in Nighatnu portion it is conspicuously absent.
Hence, it cannot be said definitely what was tIle source of this portion. As regards Bhava Misra, he happened to be in 16th Cent. The Verses of the Bhava Prakasa found in the Ayurveda Sauklzya lead us to think that either these verses are later interpolations particularly if they are not found in majority of the MSS. Without close association, it becomes difficult to explain such situations.
The possibility of a common source of both the authors, as proposed by tIle. Vaidya Bhagwal1 Dash, the editor of this work, is wellknown for his devotion to enriching the literature of Ayurveda and also to making it intelligible to the outer world. He has done this job with great labour and deserves congratlllations not only of myself but of the entire circle of intellectuals interested in the study of Ayurveda. I hope, he will be able to bring out other remaining volumes so as to present a total picture of the work.
Ayurveda is perhaps the oldest traditional system of medicine in India catering at present to the medical needs of a, large section of both the urban and rural populatIon of this country.
This system of medicine has also caught tIle attention of medical practioners in the West. The Materia Medica of ayurveda represents a rich storehouse of knowledge of drugs based on centuries of experience. Scientists, research workers, physicians and students interested in ayurveda, often experience great difficulty in obtaining authentic works on the subject with a translation in a language generally understood by them. He was the dewan Minister under the great Moghul Emperor Akbar who ruled during the sixteenth century A.
The -emperor was well known for his secular outlook. TogaramalIa, in spite of his unquestioned loyalty to thIs Muslim emperor, was. It was apparent to him that Hindu culture in India was in a decadent state and at a low.
Very little orIginal work. StIch of them as were available had been mutilated and subjected to unauthorised interpolations with the accretion of superstitious ideas through the centuries.
In his mission to revive and revitalise Hindu culture both in the religious and secular fields, he took the help of several eminent SanskrIt scholars of Varanasi and composed encyclo-. To this, theadded knowledge and experiences of the experts in the subject were incorporated. It is in this context, therefore, that today ToQ: Thus tIle text on aYllrveda is called Ayurveda Saukh. The colophons at the end of each chapter indicate the contents and chapter number, among others.
These invocations and colophons are missing in some n1anuscrlpts. Calligraphic errors have not left this monumental work untouched. Six different manuscripts collected florn variolls libraries of India and Nepal were utIlised for the collatIon and editing of tbis work. Some of tllese malluscripts are Incomplete.
But ill others which.. Therefore, while editing, it was felt desirable to serialise and renumber all these cl1apters making up a total of For the preparation of this work on Materia Medica, ten chapters of Ayurveda Saukhyarh have been utilised. On the basis of the remaJning chapters, it is contemplated to prepare separate. Ayurveda Sauklzyam deals with various topics of ayurveda including fundamental principles, anatomy, physiology, hygiene and public health, examination of patiel1ts, diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of diseases, iatro..
MaterIa Medica and allied topics are found scattered in ten differel1t chapters of this work. The eightll chapter deals with the properties of drugs. This chapter is available In five out of the six tnanuscripts consulted. In one nlanuscript, however, thIS chapter IS left incomplete. ThIS eighth chapter ilzter alia deals with some extraneous topics lIke vamana emetic therapy and virecana purgation therapy.
It is proposed to bring out a separate volllme on tl1ese topiCS, whicf: This 8th chapter of the original text is divided illtO 29 chapters In the present work-one chapter dealing exclusively witll one group of items. This chapter is, therefore, included in the 30th chapter of the present work.
ThIs chapter is available in three manllscripts. Details of these chapters are given overleaf:. There are of course, separate texts on the synonyms of drugs of ayurveda. But Inost of the extant ayurvedlc works on materia medIca invariably provide synonyms of drugs along with their properties. It is keeping in view tl1is tradition of ayurveda, and also in order to make the present work more useful to research workers, physicians and students that these. All the manuscripts procured for the editing of this work were full of grammatical and syntactical errors.
The readers "vIII find sonle such terms even in the present publication. It is likely that these mistalces were there in the original texts from where references were collected and the scholars who did the job. The other possibility is that these errors were introduced by subsequent calligraphers. There are some orthographical peculiarities in all the manuscripts of this work. While editing this work, the variant readings which include some grammatical errors also are given at the end of each chapter under Notes and References and the orIginal manuscripts are referred to as iidarsa pustikii.
Some topics given in this work are also available in other extant ayurvedic works. The variant readings in these texts are gIven at the end and these extant texts are referred to as likala.
Some portions of the manuscripts were so corrupt and incomplete that we did not think it proper to include them in the main text. The former has been edited by Prof. However, to facilitate research and study on this subject, these references are provided in the present work in square brackets [ ].
Since the names of these texts are not described in the original manuscripts, it is very difficult to determine as to who borrowed from whom.
It is also very likely that both have borrowed their texts from a third source which has since become extinct. While providing the English translation of the text, we have been very conscious of avoiding mistranslation.
Where equivalent English words are not available, in the English text, the SanskrIt words have been translIterated as such and printed in Italics. The glossary appended to this work provides a brIef explanation of such terms. The nearest English equivalents 01 many such technical terms are given in parentheses in the EnglIsh text Itself.
The botanical names of most of the medicinal plants are gIven In parentheses against the SanskrIt names of drugs in the. Wherever there is any controversy regarding the correct indentification of a drug, the botanical or English names have not been provided, lest the reader should be misguided.
One manuscript of this work was procured from a private individual of Varanasi. Some scholars had attempted a Hindi translation of this work. From the language and the paper, it appears that this attempt was not of recent origin. In some places, this Hindi translation has been consulted to decide upon the exact reading of the text. For the preparation of this work, Subhash Gupta, Kanchan Gupta and Sharada Gupta have provided considerable assistance. The authors are extremely tllankful to them.
A publication of this kind may not be a commercially viable proposition. Introduction , rasa taste J guna attributes , vlrya potency , vipaka taste that emerges after digestion , prabhava specific action . Chapter 2: Properties of Drugs. HarltakI [i-I8]: Iaghu sankha . Sugar cane Juice and its Prcducts Sugar cane juice 11]. Chapter 3: Different Types of Salt etc.
Chapter 9: Butter and Ghee Butter of cow's milk .
Qa . Chapter 7: Curd Property in general . Chapter 8: Butter Milk Property in general [ Chapter 5: Honey Variety . Chapter 6: Chapter Different Types of Oil Property of oil in general . OilS for inhalation . Hayam gavlna CI8]. Alcoholic Drinks Properties in general .
Qa . Vinegars Sukta . Different T: Different Types of Corn and Pulses Syamaka. Different Types of Water Properties ill gel1eraI . Qga [17J. Different Types of Rice Rakta sali . Inasiira . Tohita .. Quka . Fruits Dadima . PfYU [9J. Contents Chapter Ina1 Q. Vegetables General description .. Different Types of MaI. QQa . Attributes of six Tastes Sweet . Qa . Qava . Sa . Meat and Its Preparations MalD. Iaja saktu .
Qadi gana . Annpana Materia Medica Anupana in general . Groups of Drug" General description . Substitutes Permissible substitutes of various drugs . Qa . I . I [29J. I . Iaghu pafica mula . TI1usta . COl'ztents xxv drugs . Qalii . Qa diirva . JavaIiga . Synonyms of Drugs Karpuradi varga Karpura . Sa valli .. Synonyms of Drugs SulJ. Qarlka . Synonyms of Drugs SuvarlJ. Contents xxvii maila . Synonyms of Drugs Drakc. I Glossary of Technical Terms Index: III Synonyms of Drugs.
Qalu . Synonyms of Drngs Jaladi varga and food preparations Jala . Ayurveda is an upaveda or sUbsidiary text of the Atharva veda and it has the following specialised branches. Blila tantra or Paediatrics. Caraka sal1'1hita. Prior to the seventh century B.
Sztsruta sainhitii. Agada tantra Toxicology. Saliikya tantra or the treatment of diseases of head and neck. The "IJ. Yajus and Atharvan are also replete with references to various aspects of ayurveda. MedIcinal plants are also described In the saihhitti.
Rasiiyalta tantra or Geriatrics including Rejuvenation therapy. Bltftta vid 'li or the management of seizures by evil spirits and other mental disorders. Klisyapa samhita and Hiirfta sarhhita. Even this redacted version is not available in its entirety now. Other Vedas. Salya tantra or Surgery. Bhela san'1. Most of these texts are not available in their original form now. In some classIcs. Out of chapters.
Japan andl. But their use was in a crude form and they were sparingly used. Prior to this period. The fundamental principles dealing wIth the concept of drug composition and drug actio11 are also described in these texts. To compensate this loss. Buddhist monks were encouraged to learn ayurveda and practise it. The advent of Buddhism in India brought consIderable change in the practice of ayurveda.
Thus the loss by discarding tIle practJce of surgery was well compensated by the addition of latra-chemistry to the materIa medica of ayurveda during this period. BuddhIst sclars added considerably to the metals and minerals In ayurvedlC materIa medica. Htirita sarnJiitii. Susrutasan'1hitii was also redacted by Nagarjuna.
Some of the Buddhist rulers. In all these important ayurvedic classics. The remaining tl1ree texts are not available in their complete form. Ayurvedic texts. By the evening candidates returned. Several universities were established during this period for imparting theoretical and practIcal training in dIfferent religious and becular subjects.
Jlvaka and several other princes had to face these tests before being considered for admissIon to the medi. Through commercial channels ayurvedic drugs and spices were exported to these countries and they were held in high esteem there. Indian doctors who went with them. Based upon the fundamental principles of ayurveda. The materia medica of ayurveda was thus enriched..
He was an expert in paediatrics and brain surgery. In Buddhist literature. Introduction xxxiii other South-East Asian countries. It was the practice at that tilDe for candidates desirous of admissIon to the faculty in the university tt appear for a test before the nvarapala or the gate-keeper. Such repeated exchanges of scholars enriched ayurveda and its materia medica.
Materia Medica of Ayurveda
In Taxila. They were asked to go to the nearby forests and collect as many plants as possible. When these people came into contact with the rich tradition of India. One such anecdote is related to JIvaka who was three times crowned as the King of PhysicIans because of his proficieBcy in the art of heallng.
The new drugs which were specially used in those places were incorporated into the ayurvedic pharmacopoeia. As has been mentioned before. This was the time when the knowledge of materia medica became highly developed. Quite apart from any origInal thinkIng. While their rulers were engaged in polItical battles. What remained were only a few medicines for a few diseases and these were practised by people of low intellectual calibre.
Pulse examination oy touching the patient was frowned upon. The practice of ayurveda. Jlvaka replied. The profession did not attract intellectuals. Jlvaka did not return for several days and. During this process. Because of the arrest of the progress. The practice of ayurveda was despised. ExamInatIon of urine and stool was conSIdered unclean. The spread of Buddhism was so rapid among the masses of India and abroad that the intellectuals of the country were terribly afraid for tl1eir own eXIstence.
Apart from foreIgn invasIons. Buddhism was partially responsible for the arrest of development in some branches of ayurveda.
On a query from the gate-keeper. Specialised branches disappeared from the scene. Foreigners who ruled over India brought with them medicines and medical men from their own countries and patronised them.
Madanapiila nighaIJtu composed by Madana pala in A. In these texts the properties of metals and minerals and a few vegetable as well as animal products are also described.
It was composed during the twelfth century A. During the medieval period. Bhava misra composed an encyclopaedic work called Bhavaprakiisa during the sixteenth centllry A. IntloductiOll xxxv state of affair during the sixteenth century A.. The Paryaya ratnalniilti of Madhava 9th century A. Out of these. It was composed during A. It has a separate section on the description of drugs and their synonyms.
This seems to be the work done during the eighth century A. Dhanvantari nigha1J! This work Was composed prior to the thirteenth century A. This Vahatacarya seems to be. The classification of drugs. The identity of the texts between these works l1alneIy. The manifested world. Many verses of Ayurveda SC. Basic Concepts regarding the Creation of the universe Ayurveda has drawn its basic concepts from the differentphilosophical systems of ancient India.
A cursory glance through the text of AJ urvecfa Satlkhyam of Todaramalla indicates that the author l1as taken care to indIcate the name of the text or the author from where material has been compiled. Mtidhava nighantu. Ayurveda Saukhyanz on the one hand.
The system of classification followed by A1iidhava nlgha! The sattva attrlbute is the nledium of reflection of intelligence. These unmanifested tannziitras and the nlanifested mahabhtilas are of five types namely. These three gUlJOS or attributes are interdependant.
The rojas. It is significant to note here that the time and space are considered in Nyaya. These fanmiit. All these quanta of energy are present in all the types of matter. The rajas. They are the five mahti bhutas. Introduction xxx"ii end. The tamas is the mass or Inertia where the effects of rajas and sattva in the form I"of energy and conscience respectively are manifested.
Depending upon. In brief. If there is any change in this equilibrium of maJzabhutas In the human body. There is a subtle difference between these two concepts. It is also difficult to ascertain the quantum of mahtibhula present In a partIcular drug. ThIs natural loss is replenished and the hormal growth and. To correct this state of imbalancement.
During all these stages of human life. During the different stages of lIfe. But it is very difficult to ascertain tIle nature of the mahtibhutas WhICh have undergone changes in tIle body. The human body grows dUIlng young age. Pitta is responsible for all physio-chemical activities of the body in the form of metabolism. Composition of Human body The five lnahiibhutas which enter into the composition of the human body are classified Into three categories. Kapha is the substance which maintains compactness or cohesiveness in the body by providIng the fluid matrix to it.
They are seven in number. From these signs and syn1ptoms manifested in the human body. Viiyu is responsible for all the movements and sensations. These are often mistranslated as wind. Their locations and functions are described in detail in ayurvedic classics. Kapha Dominating mahabhata Vayu and liklisa lnahabhilias Tejas n1ahiibhflta Prthvi and ap mahabhutas.
The dhiitus are the basic tissue elements of the body. These seven dhiitus are also composed of five mahabhzltas.
These are required to be elimInated regularly. If these are not eliminated ill the required quantity. Drug Composition Depending tlpOn tI1e predominance of mahlibhutas. The catabolic products of the body in the form of unwal1ted nzalzliblzfltas are eliminated through them.. Their functions are described in detail in ayurvedic classics. Froln tl1ese signs and symptoms. XL Materia Medica These dhatus or basic tissue elements remain in a particular proportIon in the human body and any change in their equilibrium leads to disease and decay.
From these signs and symptoms. If there is any change in the equilIbrium of these dlzlitus certain signs and symptoms are manifested in the body which are descrIbed in detail in ayurvedic classics. Substances that are hot. Substances that are lIquid. Substances that are ligllt. Sour 3.
Lagnu light Prthvi and ap Tejas. From the above description alone. To facilitate the understanding of the mahiibhautic composition of a drug and to ascertain its exact action on the human body. From these tastes rasas. The dom-inating mahli bhiltas in drugs of different tastes are given in the table below: Taste 1. In ayurvedic texts. Predominating mahii bhrtfas: XLii 1 2. Guru heavy 2. Sthira stable Ruksa ununctuous 7.
Sandra dense Mrdu soft Ruk5Q 5. Sara fluid 1I. Klzara rough Introduction 3. Ap Tejas Vayu Tejas. Slta 2. Viiyu and ap Ap and iikiisa Prtllvl Prtlzvf. I"'1 p PrthvT.. Drava liquid XLiii Ap Tejas. SnigdJlll Predominating Jnahii bhutas. Guru 6. Another group 01 scholars hold eight attributes as vfryas and their lrzalzii bhautzc compositIon lS given below: Vfrya 1. Snigdha unctuous 6. Laghu 7. Jnadhura sweet. Kathina hard USIJa 3. Manda dull 8. Some of these n1edicines might have bacteriostatic or bac.
None the less. On the basis of accumulated experience and the repeated observatIons through centuries. They manlfest their actIon only when the drug is administered to the patient and this is called prabhliva or specific action. The eXIstence of organisms and their role in the causation of several infective diseases in the body have been recognised and elaborated. In the ayurvedic texts on materIa medIca. The action of some drugs cannot be explained according to their rasa taste.
It is because the maha bhiifas which take part in the manifestation of rasa. In fact most of the discrepancies in the Gangadhar translation re-appear in these later texts. Looking at Shotish Chondro Shorma's B. SholakaAsroyand Prishtho, instead of the single set in Chorok; there is also an anal bone called Gujhyo, which again is lacking in the original; similarly again a cluster of two bones called Kurcho are mentioned which are absent in Chorok's text; also present are 2 cheek bones called Gondo, three nasal bones called Ghonaland 17 breast bones, all of which though present 24 The Calcutta Historical Journal.
July - December in Gangadhar are absent in Chorok. Though Gangadhar's version appeared in , Obinash Chondro Kobirotno's44 edition in , Debendronath and Upendronath Sengupto's45 edition in , and subsequently another edition in , all restate the same figure.
Clearly, the repetition of the same errors over and over again point to a significant degree of inter-textuality, if not the existence of an alternate and un-stated canon. In fact this alternate canon became so far hegemonic by the end of the nineteenth century that when Jibonanondo Bidyasagor, whose version of the text had been true to the original, released a second edition in , he changed it to match the set proposed by Gangadhar, apoligising for the errors in the earlier edition.
Another aspect of these texts which are of seminal importance but shows considerable variations are the renditions of the Tridosh pathology. In , Vaidyaratna Captain G. This became a sort of canon for all later committees appointed for similar purposes and was not only appended to the Report of the Government of India Committee in , but also got its author co-opted as a member of the said Committee.
In the memorandum Murti outlines the fundamentals of the Ayurbedictradition. While discussing the Ayurbedic theory of pathology, Murti writes, The three Dhatus knwon as Vata, Pitha and Kapha are the three elementary and fundamental units or principles on which the building and sustenance of the body depend When they are in normal equilibrium, it is healthy; and ill-health when they are not, in which case the Dhatus are technically known as Doshes literally Faults; this is because in this condition they give rise to Faults or ill-health in the body.
Also noteworthy here is the fact that Doshes and Dhatus are essentially identical.
What in its normal condition of equilibrium is called a Dhatu, becomes a Dosh when it is in the unnatural condition of dis-equilibrium. On the other hand in Shotish Chondro's text for example, it is said, Depending on the type of their actions, there are three types of substances. Some substances are such that, by their effect, they bring the three Doshes Doshthroy namely, Baayu, Pittwo and Kaaph into equilibrium. Some other are such that their effect give rise to Doshes in Dhatus such as Blood Rokto John Marshall, who visited Bengali Ayurbed: Texts and Practices 25 India in the 17th Century for instance is told by Nilkanth, a 'doctor from Hughli' that there are seven Dhatus which are distinct from the Doshes.
Yet elsewhere Marshall is told, that there are seven Dhatus and they are identical with the Doshes, since each Dhatu has a corresponding Dosh.
Though usually Dhatus are rarely used as diagnostic indices, occasionally even this happens. Wise for instance, who asw we know depnded mainly on Bengali interlocutors such as, AbhaycharanTarapanchanan and Madhusudan Gupta, to arrive at a comprehensive view of mid-nineteenth century Ayurbed, notes that, When the principal humours dhatus are deranged, the disease is called by the name of othe humour affected; such as rasaja chyle Yet even here, when they are indeed used as diagnostic causes, they are no longer treated as being composed of other doshes.
Thus this much at least is safe to contend that, even those interpretations of classical theory that did in fact use the shoptodhatus as diagnostic causes, still continued to equate doshes and dhatus. The distinction posited by Shotish Chondro, is hence completely novel as is the subsequent relationship of inherence of the dosh in the dhatu.
In the Bengali texts we repeatedly find this laxity in the use of technical terms. Yet there remains a second possible reading of Shotish Chondro's formulation i. This reading too in fact has a genealogy of its own as can be seen from the following comments of T.
Wise,49 who significantly collected his material, from Bengali interlocutors and even his footnotes are occasionally given in the Bangla script. According to Wise, The air vayu , bile pitta , and phlegm kofa , are the three pillars or supports of the system Could it be then that 'blood' as a humour was appropriated from Unani Tibb? Though a seductively easy solution, there are other facts to be considered. Comparing the usage of Katyayana and Patanjali on the doshes with the usage to be found in the Buddhist Pali canon Hartmut Scharfe has mentioned that, "though Katyayana and Patanjali share the expressions vatika, paittikas, slaismika and sannipatika with the classical medical texts, the meanings of these terms do not match exactly those found 26 The Calcium Historical Journal.
Later still from around the middle of the 6th Century A. The manuscripts contain three medicinal tracts.
While one might argue that phlegm and wind are undesirable intruders phlegm was not listed as part of the body in the older Vedic ritual texts, though it was in the Satapatha- brahmana and in Buddhist texts , this cannot be said about bile, which has always been considered part of a healthy body [i. The ambiguous role of the blood - often lining up with the dosas while frequently listed as one of the bodily elements dhatus -has been discussed by several later Ayurvedic authors.
It is well beyond the scope of this paper to investigate if the divergence between the Pali canon and the conceptions of Katyayana and Patanjali, was caused due to the regional differences or difference in dialects. Yet the fact that there were alternative views available within the Ayurbedic tradition, which has strong similarities with the Unani tradition, may point towards a complex process of mimetic legitimation.
A unilinear developmental model is premised on there being discrete and unified traditions in contact with one another from which mutual borrowing may take place through various dialogic transactions. An alternate model to conceptualise similarities between different traditions which exist in close proximity to each other would be to see all traditions as being comprised of plural possibilities.
Locked in close proximity these traditions might then accent those readings which are common to both, in an attempt to derive legitimation from each other.
The neighbouring traditions are thus locked into a mimetic vertigo, where each incorporate elements of each other's narratives thus mutually drawing legitimation from each other.
Elsewhere again, while discussing the action and growth of Baathic fever, one of the eight types of fevers recognised by the Ayurbedic tradition, Shotish Chondro writes, The effected Baayu then enters into the stomach amashoy and combines with the digestive fire jothoraagni , henceforthe it depends upon the first product of the digestive process i.
Texts and Practices 27 What then is the relation posited between the Dhatu and the dosh? It is definitely not one of the former being constituted or made up by the later. For then how can the dosh 'depend' upon the dhatu? Not only do we have yet another example here of the extremely loose usage of the word Dhatu, but more importantly there is talk of the disease causing the effected or polluted Baayu actually "entering' the stomach and then moving to different places in the body from thereon.
But as we have heard Murti tell us, Vayu is supposed to be an elementary and fundamental building block of the body. What then does it mean to talk of its as entering here or leaving there? Is it not then being visualised as a localised agent causing disease?
We do not wish to argue here that the idea of a motile Baayu was novel to Ayurbed in the late 19th century, indeed Dr. Arthur Ewing had spokent of five vital breaths mentioned in the Yajur and Atharva Veda way back in What was novel was the attempt to use the language of plural winds to communicate ideas of a localised malady within the body, rather than a generalised malady caused by an imbalance of the three doshes.
Instead of speaking terms of ill-health caused by an imbalance in the body's constituents, it suggests a series of mobile but definitely localised sites that are stimulated to an extent whre their potential malevolence becomes activated and then circulates through various paths to different parts of the body causing ill-health.
Consider for example this archetypical formulation from Saroda Choron Sen's B. Since it is when they get mischievous taht the body is polluted. When they are mischievous to the point whre thay can cause disease the three doshes travel by various paths to different pahs of the body, and give rise to ill-health and suffering While this might be true for the Ayurvedic practices studied by her, it is in need of the Ayurbedic discourse of colonial Bengali Ayurbed to localise pathogens in an anatomical space i.
Further this anatomical space was not identical to the 28 The Calcutta Historical Journal. July - December anatomical space of the bio-medical tradition. Another important qualification to keep in mind in this regard is the fact that denotative speech which localises its referent in an anatomical space can still be metaphorical in describing its referents, such as, for example, in the case of the pulse, where while the three doshes to be felt in the act of diagnosis are clearly described metaphorically, the language is still denotative in giving detailed and localised directions as to where and how to feel for the doshes.
In fact the large-scale use of birechon purges and bomon vomiting , further suggests a clear division between the anatomical space and the outer space. In fact, zysk commenting on the development of anatomical knowledge in Ayurbed has mentioned that despite efforts of scholars such as Hoernle and Filliozat, it is difficult to identify the exact organs known to the authors of the Sutras B. Though the Charok Shomhita technically predates the Shushruto, yet the extant versions of the Chorok are mostly held to be dating at best from the 8th Century, when Dhrirabal62 redacted and substantially added to the original, further we have already seen that the Chorok used in Bengal was Gongadhor Ray's version which displayed defintie evidence of having been shaped and influenced by someone who was conversant with the Shushruto text.
Such a conclusion is supported by the use of reletively specialised Shushrotoisms such as the word Kurcho to designate a cluster of bones.
Langford has argued that, the division betweent he inner anatomical space of the body and the external space is not only central to the bio-medical discouse but also allegorical of the sort of spatial arrangement that marks the modern nation-state with defintie boundaries. Unfortunately, in this case Langford seems to have fallen prey to the impulse towards describing Ayurbed as an absolute and diametric opposite of bio-medicine.
Though admittedly Ayurbedic bodies are indeed often fluidly connected to their environments, an absolute difference at the conceptual level between all forms of Ayurbed and bio-medicine seems to warrant some qualification. In fact insinuating perhaps what we have called 'mimetic legitimation' Langford too has spoken of the attempts to translate Ayurbed as 'science,' thus stressing the continuity with bio-medical forms at one level.
What she seems to be describing when she, Bengali Ayurbed: Texts ami Practices 29 after compairng the practices of three contemporary practitioners of Ayurbed in enframing the body mentions that "each of these physicians resist modern forms of knowledge at different levels What we designate as 'dialectic legitimation' is a mode of presentation of a medical praxis that draws legitimation by asserting its radical opposition to another medical praxis.
Both 'dialectic' and 'mimetic' forms of legitimation are then tied into a relationship of mutuality with proximate alternative praxes.
Yet while 'dialectic' forms of legitimation seem more symptomatic of the post-colonial contemporary praxes that Langford studies and which cater increasingly by her own affirmation to a growing niche for 'alternative' medicines; 'mimetic legitimation' seems more typical of the colonial period. It is cogent though to remind ourselves how easy it is to over-estimate the role of the Tridosh pathology in Ayurbed.
In fact in certain ways it is this over- estimation that has largely contributed to the reading of Ayurbed at text rather than as practice. Wilson, for instance, wrote in the Transactions of the Medical and Physical Society of Calcutta in that 'treatises on individual diseases were unknown to Hindu medicine' and that they always sought to construct a system.
The first are a set such as Horolal Gupto's67 Ayurbed Bhashabhidan which attempts to establish a common language of nomenclature for the various drugs and drug substances while the second are typified by Nogendronath Sengupto's Drobyoguun Shikkha and sought to exhaustively list all elements that one was likely to come into contact with and acquaint one with their Ayurbedic composition in terms of three Ayurbedic quasi-humours i.
Baath, Pittwo and Kaaph. Both genres share at least a morphological similarity with the Materia Medicas of the West'. Gupto's text was first published in B. In the preface to his first edition, Gupto had written that, These days most Auyrbedic texts tend to follow the language in use in Calcutta.
This is usually the cause for great constenation for the lay practitioner of Ayurbedic 30 The Calcutta Historical Journal. July December medicine. They tend to get their training in one particular district and learn the names of the herbs in that district's language, but then because of various exigencies have to move to another district where the herbs are known by another name.
The translations available are not always accurate, and it is to eradicate this grave impediment that I have undertaken to write this book. Clearly then the material trappings of modernity i. But more importantly for us, it also pointed towards the hegemonic gesture made by a Calcutta- based nomenclatorial system towards a plethora of localised registers of names.
In the third edition of his text Gupto includes a strikingly modern classificatory system for arranging herbs, according to whether they bear flower or not, the type of roots, the type of leaves etc. There are lists of names, in different languages, followed by a physical description of the plant in terms of the type of leaves, flowers, appearance, height etc.
Of course the names in the English texts are given in provincial languages such as Bengali, Tamil, Hindi etc. Similarly, the texts referred to in the former are those of a host of earlier writers such as de O'rta, Royle, O'Shaughnessy etc.
Michel Forcault, while recounting the defining moment of 'natural history'promulgated by scholars like Linnaeus,68 described its arangement of discourse according to the following plan: All the language deposited upon things by time is pushed back into the very last category, in a sort of supplement in which discourse is allowed to recount itself and record discoveries, traditions, beliefs, and poetical figures.
The difference between the earlier English texts and the Bengali ones lay only in the fact that, the litteraria had diferent referents. A case perhaps not only of mimetic legitimation but also of a form of culture politics similar to nationalism, which, while sharing its form with the colonial project, sought to invoke other pasts and differnt memories. Interestingly Gupto further writes, The number of pollens in each flower vary.
Some experts on plants have attempted to classify them according to the number of pollens in each. Even some Aryan seers are said to have attempted to have done this. Today though such practices are hardly deemed necessary, and hence I too have decided against including them here. Hengali Awtrhed. Texts anil Tim li, es 31 A clear indication of the debate in botany about the natural and the Linnaean systems of plant classification, which is once again mimetically incorporated into an 'Aryan' past.
Significantly though this past is one which can apparently be selectively used, and the selection further can take place along a simple criterion of 'current usage'. Both these figures are easily discerned in Nogendronath's70 text as well. Though perhaps, Nogendronath is even bolder than Gupto in articulating the need for innovation.
This text was first published ten years after Gupto's in B.
In the preface to the first edition, Sengupto writes, There is enough advice regarding the qualities that constitute various substances, in the classical texts of Ayurbed. Not only a blade of grass but also precious gems of all kinds and even rice, lentils, loochis and shondesh i.
Yet the things that modern science have brought to our doorstep today, were not known at the time of the last compilation of the classics, and henco are not dealt with. Hence, our curiosity today can no longer be sateisfied by merely studying the ancient texts. There is both the attempt to establish an alternate tradition as well as a selective and eclectic use of older traditions to do the same, though both attempts are, as in Gupto's text couched in an idiom of revival and retrieval from ancient Ayurbed.
Yet there is another interesting aspect in which Nogendronath's text points to the emerging local tradition of Ayurbed. We have already seen how in the more philosophically oriented 'so-called' translations there were two different forms of humoural theory available. While the one saw all reality to be constituted of the same basic elements and an imbalance in their composition led to ill-health, there was on the other hand a quasi-humoural theory in which the diseases were themselves a sort of exrternal contagion that intruded the individuated body and thereby caused illness, through the circulation of mobile but localised agencies of malevolence.
In the latter too, there is talk of the same three humours Baath, Pittwo and Kaaph, but the meanings given to them are quite different. In Nogendronath's text too we find this discrepancy. He does not describe in practice what he promises to do in the preface, viz. What he actually does is in fact state what effect these have on the individual patient's humours. Consider for example his description of Othibisha Acontium Heterophyllum. This Acontium Heterophyllum yields a strong bitter juice, which raises body heat, and is effective in Kaaph.
Diarrhoea, Cough, Puking, Poisoning and Sleshmic complaints July December 21X15 texts in merely a synonym of Kaaph Phlegm. Further the use of medicines in Nogendronath's text is not as agents that redress humoural imbalances but much rather as curatives that address a contagion marked by complaints such as fever, diarrhoea, cough, vomiting etc.
Yet diseases caused by causes other than 'humoural imbalance," are not new to Ayurbed. Scharfe commenting on Zysk's views on the matter state that, "Zysk rightly stresses the continuity between early Buddhist and early Ayurvedic medicine, in that wind, bile and phlegm - or a combination of these - are causes of many ailments, though in several instances ailments are not traced to any of these three.
Though obvisoiusly Nogendronath's disease categories are not derived from these ancient non-humoural diseases, it points once again to the existence of various conceptual strands within the Ayurbedic tradition, which allowed for variant localized readings to emerge in keeping with the dynamics of mimetic legitimation. It also serves to pre-empt us from construction of hasty lineages whereby concepts and ideas were 'borrowed' in a linear movement from an 'other'tradition. There is another third set of texts, which sits somewhat awkardly with the preceding two sets of lists.
The corpus of texts known as Bhoishoj Rotnaboli, claim both to be translated from an older Sanskrit work, and yet it is largely a list of prescriptions, with hardly any discussion of the theorty of disease or symptomatology as such.
In the preface to his B. Umesh Chondro Bhottacharjyo writes about the text, A renowned ancient Kobiraj by the name of Gobindo Das had written this text. By the strength of his erudition, he had written the work entirely in Bengali, since then this work has been the favourite of all Boidyos.
It has been passed down from Gurus to their disciples in hand written form. Perhaps it is because of this and mistakes made while copying it out, that there are several discrepancies about the true contents of the text What is noteworthy here is the existence of local texts which too were occasionally incorporated within the emerging canon through print.
There are a large number of prescriptions in the text that openly refute the humoural or indeed quasi-humoural pretensions of the Ayurbedic tradition. The fevers are here not divided into the eight types listed according to humoural theories of Ayurbed, instead they are split into old, new and middling fevers, depending on how long ago one contracted it.
Further there are a host of prescriptions which are like elixirs; that is that they are said to work on a host of complaints, regardless of the cause or specificity of the malady, somewhat like the patent medicines of the day. About the Mrityunjoy Rosh, a particular prescription for instance it is said, The Mrityunjoy Rosh is effective for all diseases withoiut exception.
Therefore it is the cause of the name and fame of the physician who uses it. Hennali Ayurbed l-'rames. II in most unqualified acclaim though is reserved fro Mercury.
Baayu, Pittwo, Kaaph; or indeed the ilit. I or a medic who despite having studied all the systems of medicine, if he does not know the use of mercury, is like a priest who does not have a faith.
Yet the striking aspect of the text is in the theory that underlines it. It is clearly an empirical text, and obviously influenced by neighbouring systems, for mercury is generally believed to have entered Ayurbedic practice in the fourteenth century through such texts as the Sharongodhor Shomgroho and the Jogo Rotnakor, which texts themselves were surely influenced byTantric and Unani ideas. While most of the other texts that we have discussed till now have tended to at least pay lip service to the humoural pathology of the Ayurbedic tradition, the texts we now turn to are in open contradiction to it.
That is not to say that they do not deploy the rhetoric of antiquity, but they hardly ever cite any particular texts from which they derive.
While others such as Durgadas Kor's Bhishok Bondhu , or Oghorchondro Shingho's Bhoishoj Prokash are merely compilations of prescriptions, drawn apparently from the recent advances made in 'western' medicine, without citing any particular textual source. Yet since our primary focus in this paper has been on texts that have avowedly placed themselves within the Ayurbedic tradition, it is yet another set of texts that we shall turn to in this section.
Most of these texts use the relatively ambiguous term 'kobiraji' or even'mushtijoge' medicine to describe themselves, rather than the more firmly traditional term Ayurbedic. Griho Mushtijoge Chikitsha.Inasiira .
Upalcuficikii has similar properties. III Synonyms of Drugs. A cursory glance through the text of AJ urvecfa Satlkhyam of Todaramalla indicates that the author l1as taken care to indIcate the name of the text or the author from where material has been compiled. The profession did not attract intellectuals. For then how can the dosh 'depend' upon the dhatu? The petition of is perhaps the most conspicuous cross-over moment Bengali Ayurbed: Texts and Practices 27 What then is the relation posited between the Dhatu and the dosh?
Iaghu pafica mula .
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