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Sushruta SamhitaChikitsasthanaMedhayuskamiya Rasayana - Improve memory and increase the duration of human life...

Medhayuskamiya Rasayana – Improve memory and increase the duration of human life – Sushrutasamhita Chikitsasthana Chapter 28

अष्टाविंशोऽध्यायः । अथातो मेधायुष्कामीयं रसायनचिकित्सितं व्याख्यास्यामः, यथोवाच भगवान् धन्वन्तरिः :।।१।।

Now we shall discourse on the elixirs and remedial agents which tend to improve the memory and invigerate the mental faculties as well as to increase the duration of human life (Medhayuskamiya Rasayana). 1


मेधायुष्कामः श्वेतावल्गुजफलान्यातपपरिशुष्काण्यादाय सूक्ष्मचूर्णानि कृत्वा गुडेन सह समालोडच स्नेहकुम्भे सप्तरात्रं धान्यराशौ निदध्यात् । सप्तरात्रादुद्धृत्य हृतदोषस्य यथाबलं पिण्डं प्रयच्छेदनुदिते सूर्ये, उष्णोदकञ्चानुपिबेत् । भल्लातकविधानवच्चागारप्रवेशः, जीर्णौषधश्चापराह्णे हिमाभिरद्भिः परिषिक्तगात्र: शालीनां षष्टिकानाञ्च पयसा शर्करामधुरेणौदनमश्नीयात् । एवं षण्मासानुपयुज्य विगतपाप्मा बलवर्णोपेतः श्रुतनिगादी स्मृतिमानरोगी वर्षशतायुर्भवति ॥ २ ॥

Svetavalguja-Rasayana : The fruit (seeds) of the white Avalguja should be dried in the sun and then reduced to a fine powder. This powder should be stirred with (an adequate quantity of) treacle and placed in an earthen pitcher which previously contained clarified butter (Sneha-kumbha ). The pitcher should then be kept buried in a heap of paddy for seven days after which it should be taken out and its contents given in convenient doses according to his strength every morning before sunrise to a person, seeking improvement of intellectual sharpness and longevity, after his system has been throughly cleansed (with proper emetics and purgatives, etc.). Hot water should then be drunk. After taking the medicine, the patient should enter his room in accordance with the rules laid down in connection with the BhallatakaVidhana. After the digestion of the medicine, the patient should be advised to take a cold bath and to partake in the evening of a meal of well-cooked sali or Sastika rice with (boiled) milk sweetened with sugar. This medicine is continuously taken in this manner for six months would make the life of its user sinless, and extend it in the full glow of health and vigour and in the sound enjoyment of a vigorous memory and of all his intellectual faculties to a hundred green summers. 2

कुष्ठिनं पाण्डुरोगिणमुदरिणं वा कृष्णाया गोर्मूत्रेणालोड्यार्धपलिकं पिण्डं विगतलौहित्ये सवितरि पाययेत्, पराह्णे चालवणेनामलकयूषेण सर्पिष्मन्तमोदनमश्नीयात्, एवं मासमुपयुज्य स्मृतिमानरोगी वर्षशतायुर्भवति । एष एवोपयोगश्चित्रकमूलानां रजन्याश्च, चित्रकमूले विशेषो द्विपलिकं पिण्डं परं प्रमाणम्। शेषं पूर्ववत् ॥ ३ ॥

In cases of Kustha, jaundice and abdominal dropsy (Udara), the medicine should be prepared by stirring (the powdered seeds of) the Krsna¹ (black Avalguja) with the urine of a black cow (instead of with treacle) and given to the patient in doses of half a Pala weight every morning after the sun has ceased to look red. In the afternoon the patient should be made to partake of a meal of boiled rice with clarified butter and unsalted Amalaka soup. A continuous use of this medicine in the aforesaid manner for a month would improve the memory and intellectual faculties of the user, and enable him to witness a hundred summers on earth in the full enjoyment of sound health. Citraka roots³ and Rajani (turmeric) may be used in the same manner and for similar purposes with this distinction that the dose of the Citraka-root preparation should be two Pala measures (instead of half a Pala as laid down in regard to the foregoing compounds). The rest are identical with the above. 3

1. Jejjata explains “Krsna” to mean Pippali. But both Gayi and Dalhana explain it to mean the black Avaguja. It should be mentioned, here, that Dalhana recommends the roots of black Avalguja, but we think that its seeds should be taken Before sunrise.

Manduka-parni Rasayana

हृतदोष एव प्रतिसंसृष्टभक्तो यथाक्रममागारं प्रविश्य मण्डूकपर्णीस्वरसमादाय सहस्त्रसम्पाताभिहुतं कृत्वा यथाबलं पयसाउलोड्य पिबेत् पयोऽनुपानं वा । तस्यां जीर्णायां यवान्नं पयसोपयुञ्जीत, तिलैर्वा सह भक्षयेत् त्रीन् मासान् पयोऽनुपानम् जीर्णे पयः सर्पिरोदन इत्याहारः । एवमुपथुञ्जानो ब्रह्मवर्चसी श्रुतनिगादी भवति, वर्षशतमायुरवाप्नोति । त्रिरात्रोपोषितश्च त्रिरात्रमेनां भक्षयेत्, त्रिरात्रादूर्ध्वं पयः सर्पिरिति चोपयुञ्जीत | बिल्वमात्रं पिण्डं वा पयसाउलोडच पिबेत् । एवं दशरात्रमुपयुज्य मेधावी वर्षशतायुर्भवति ॥४॥

Manduka-parni Rasayana : The Dosas of the system of a person should be first throughly cleansed (with the help of proper emetics and purgatives, etc.), and he should be advised to undergo the prescribed diet of (Peya, Yavagu, etc. in their proper order). He should be further advised to enter his chamber in the prescribed manner (and to remain there during the entire course of the treatment).

An adequate dose of the expressed juice of the Manduka-parni should then be stirred with milk, and should be taken after consecrating it by reciting the proper Mantras a thousand times. A portion of milk may then be taken immediately. After it had been fully digested a meal of cooked barley grains with milk should then be partaken of; or (the expressed juice of Manduka-parni) with an admixture of sesamum seeds followed by a potion of milk. A meal of boiled rice with milk and clarified butter should then be taken after the digestion of the medicine and should be continued for three months in succession. This would ensure a long life of a hundred years in the full vigour of retentive memory and intellectual faculties, and would impart a god-like effulgence to the complexion. As an alternative, the patient should fast three days and take only the expressed juice of Manduka-parni for these three days. After this period he should live on milk and clarified butter only, or he should be made to take a Bilva measure (of the paste of Mandukaparni) stirred with milk for ten consecutive days which would ensure a life of a hundred years in the full enjoyment of his intellectual faculties. 4

Brahmi Rasayana

हृतदोष एवागारं प्रविश्य प्रतिसंसृष्टभक्तो ब्राह्मीस्वरसमादाय सहस्त्रसम्पाताभिहुतं कृत्वा यथाबलमुपयुञ्जीत, जीर्णौषधश्चापराह्ने यवागूमलवणां पिबेत्, क्षीरसात्म्यो वा पयसा भुञ्जीत, एवं सप्तरात्रमुपयुज्य ब्रह्मवर्चसी मेधावी भवति, द्वितीयं सप्तरात्रमुपयुज्य ग्रन्थमीप्सितमुत्पादयति नष्टञ्चास्य प्रादुर्भवति, तृतीयं सप्तरात्रमुपयुज्य द्विरुच्चारितं शतमप्यवधारयति । एवमेकविंशतिरात्रमुपयुज्यालक्ष्मीरपक्रामति, मूर्त्तिमती चैनं वाग्देव्यनुप्रविशति, सर्वाश्चैनं श्रुतय उपतिष्ठन्ति, श्रुतधरः पञ्चवर्षशतायुर्भवति।।५।।

Brahmi Rasayana: Having had the Dosas of the system duly cleansed (with proper emetics and purgatives, etc.), a person (wishing to undergo a treatment of Rasayana) should be advised to take the prescribed diet of (Peya, Yavagu, etc., in their proper order), and should be made to enter his room (Agara).

He should then take the expressed juice of the Brahmi in an adequate dose according to his strength after consecrating the juice a thousand times with the proper Mantras. After the medicine had been fully digested he should be advised to take in the evening Yavagu (gruel) without any salt; or with boiled milk in the event of his being habituated to its use. A continuous use of the medicine for a week improves the memory, leads to the expansion of the intellectual faculties and imparts a celestial glow to the complexion.

In the second week of its course it revives old and forgotten memories in the user and adds to his proficiency in the writing out of any book to be written.

In the third week, it enables a man to reproduce from memory as many as one hundred words if twice heard or read (at a single sitting )

In the same manner a (further) use of the drug for twenty-one days removes all inauspicious features whether of the body or of the mind, the goddess of learning appears in an embodied form to the (mind of the) user, and all kinds of knowledge come rushing into his memory. A single hearing is enough to make him reproduce (verbatim from memory a discourse however lengthy), and he is enable to live for five hundred years. 5

Brahmi Ghrita

ब्राह्मीस्वरसप्रस्थद्वये घृतप्रस्थं विडङ्गतण्डुलानां कुडवं द्वे द्वे पले वचात्रिवृतयोर्द्वादश हरीतक्यामलकबिभीतकानि श्लक्ष्णपिष्टान्यावाप्यैकध्यं साधयित्वा स्वनुगुप्तं निदध्यात्, ततः पूर्वविधानेन मात्रां यथाबलमुपयुञ्जीत, जीर्णे पयः सपिरोदन इत्याहारः एतेनोर्ध्वमधस्तिर्यक् कृमयो निष्क्रामन्ति, अलक्ष्मीरपक्रामति, पुष्करवर्णः स्थिरवयाः श्रुतनिगादी त्रिवर्षशतायुर्भवति । एतदेव कुष्ठविषमज्वरापस्मारोन्मादविषभूतग्रहेष्वन्येषु च महाव्याधिषु संशोधनमादिशन्ति ।।६।।

Brahmi Ghrita: Two Prastha measures of the expressed juice of the Brahmi and one Prastha measure of clarified butter should be cooked with one Kudava measure of Vidanga seeds, two Pala weight of each of Vaca and Trivrt, and twelve (in number) of each of Haritaki, Amalaka and Bibhitaka well pounded and mixed together. When properly cooked, the (prepared) Ghrita should be carefully preserved in a covered pitcher. It should then be taken in adequate doses according to his strength as in the preceding manner. The patient should be advised to take meals of boiled rice, clarified butter and milk, after the medicine had been fully digested. Under its use worms and vermin would be expelled (from their unsuspected seats in the organism) and creep out of the upper, lower and lateral parts of the body. This preparation would give a favourable turn to one’s fortune, impart a lotus-like bloom (to the cheeks ) with perpetual youth, unparalleled intellectual faculties and a life that would cover a period of three centuries of song and sunshine. This elixir or Rasayana covers within its therapeutic range such affections of the body as cutaneous diseases (Kustha), chronic-fever, epilepsy, insanity, and the diseases due to the effect of poisons and to the evil influence of ghosts and malignant spirits, as well as of all other dangerous diseases. 6

Vacha Rasayana

हृतदोष एवागारं प्रविश्य हैमवत्या वचायाः पिण्डमामलकमात्र – मभिहुतं पयसाऽऽलोड्य पिबेत्, जीर्णे पयः सर्पिरोदन इत्याहारः, एवं द्वादशरात्रमुपयुञ्जीत । ततोऽस्य श्रोत्रं विव्रियते । द्विरभ्यासात् स्मृतिमान् भवति। त्रिरभ्यासाच्छुतमादत्ते । चतुर्द्वादशरात्रमुपयुज्य सर्वं तरति किल्विषं, तार्क्ष्यदर्शनमुत्पद्यते, शतायुश्च भवति । द्वे द्वे पले इतरस्या वचाया निष्क्वाथ्य पिबेत् पयसा | समानं भोजनं, समाः पूर्वेणाशिषश्च।।७।।

Vacha Rasayana: A paste of white Vacha to the size of an Amalaka should be taken with (an adequate quantity of) milk, after consercrating it (in the proper manner). The medicine should be taken after cleansing the system (with emetics and purgatives, etc.) and after entering the Agara (room). After the medicine had been digested, a meal of boiled rice with milk and clarified butter should be partaken of. A continuous use of this elixir for twelve days improves the power of hearing. It increases the power of memory if taken for the next twelve days. It enables the user to remember a hundred words at a time by a thrice repetition of the same (i.e., by taking it for a period of thirty-six days). A repetition of a twelve days’ (i.e., forty-eight days) use of the medicine leads to the expiation of all sins; it imparts a keenness of sight like that of Garuda and enables the user to witness a hundred summers on earth. A decoction prepared with two Pala weight of any other species of Vaca should be taken with milk¹. The benefits which would result from its use and the rules of diet and conduct to be observed (during its course) are identical with those of the preceding one. 7

Sata-paka Vacha-Ghrita

वचाशतपाकं वा सर्पिर्द्रोणमुपयुज्य पञ्चवर्षशतायुर्भवति, गलगण्डापचीश्लीपदस्वरभेदांश्चापहन्तीति ।। ८ ।।

Sata-paka Vacha-Ghrita : Clarified butter should be cooked a hundred times in succession with an adequate quantity of Vaca. The use of a Drona measure of this medicated Ghrita (taken every day in an adequate dose) extends the earthly career of its user to five centuries, and proves beneficial in cases of scrofula, goitre, elephantiasis and hoarseness. 8

अत ऊर्ध्वं प्रवक्ष्यामि आयुष्कामरसायनम् । मन्त्रौषधसमायुक्तं संवत्सरफलप्रदम् ।। ९ ।। बिल्वस्य चूर्णं पुष्ये तु हुतं वारान् सहस्रशः । श्रीसूक्तेन नरः कल्ये ससुवर्ण दिने दिने । सर्पिर्मधुयुतं लिह्यादलक्ष्मीनाशनं परम् ।।१०।।

Measures for prolonging life–M.T.: Now we shall discourse on life-prolonging measures and remedies including mantras and medicines which are effective in a year. The powder of Bilva (roots) taken in Pusya Naksatra should be consecrated a thousand times by reciting and the Sri-Sukta (as mentioned in the Rg-Veda) and should then be mixed with (powdered) gold, honey and clarified butter (in the form of an electuary), and licked every morning. It is thus a combination of medicine and Mantra, and if used continuously for a year, would remove all inauspicious features (both of the body and of the mind). 9-10

1. According to Dalhana, this preparation of Vaca should be prepared by boiling it in the manner of Ksira-paka vidhi.

त्वचं विहाय बिल्वस्य मूलक्वाथं दिने दिने । प्राश्नीयात् पयसा सार्धं स्नात्वा हुत्वा समाहितः । दशसाहस्त्रमायुष्यं स्मृतं युक्तरथं स्मृतं युक्तरथं भवेत् ॥ ११ ॥ संयुतम् । हुत्वा बिसानां क्वाथन्तु मधुलाजैश्च अमोघं शतसाहस्त्रं युक्तं युक्तरथं स्मृतम् ॥ १२ ॥

Every morning after a bath, a man should offer ten thousand oblations in fire and take the powder and decoction of the roots and bark of the Bilva with milk in a spirit of self-control, whereby he would be able to acquire longevity. This remedy should be considered as a good Rasayana. Similarly a decoction of Mrnala mixed with honey and fried paddy and duly consecrated a hundred thousand times with oblatioins in fire would be considered an infallible Rasayana. 11-12

सुवर्णं पद्मबीजानि मधु लाजाः प्रियङ्गवः । गव्येन पयसा पीतमलक्ष्मीं प्रतिषेधयेत् ।।१३।। नीलोत्पलदलक्वाथो गव्येन पयसा शृतः । ससुवर्णतिलैः सार्धमलक्ष्मीनाशनः स्मृतः । ॥ १४ ॥

The use (of a compound consisting of gold, Padma-seed, Priyangu and fried paddy mixed with honey and taken in (an adequate quantity of) cow’s milk gives a favourable turn to one’s fortune. A potion of milk cooked with the decoction of the petals (Dala) of Nilotpala (in the manner of Ksira-paka Vidhi) and mixed with gold and sesamum seeds, is attended with similar results. 13-14

गव्यं पयः सुवर्णञ्च मधूच्छिष्टञ्च माक्षिकम् । पीतं शतसहस्त्राभि-हुतं पुक्तरथं स्मृतम् ॥ १५ ॥ वचाघृतसुवर्णञ्च बिल्वचूर्णमिति त्रयम् । मेध्यमायुष्यमारोग्य-पुष्टिसौभाग्यवर्धनम् ॥१६॥

Cow’s milk with gold, wax and Maksika (honey), if (regularly) taken after having performed a Homa ceremony a hundred thousands times, should be considered the best Rasayana. The use of the pulverised compound of the three things viz.. Vaca, gold and Bilva. if taken with clarified butter, tends to improve the health, memory, intellectual powers and physical growth. It increases the duration of one’s life and brings good luck in its train. 15-16

वासामूलतुलाक्वाथे तैलमावाप्य साधितम् । हुत्वा सहस्त्रमनीयात् मेध्यमायुष्यमुच्यते ॥ १७ ॥

यावकांस्तावकान् खादेदभिभूय यवांस्तथा । पिप्पलीमधुसंयुक्तान् शिक्षाचरणवद् भवेत् ॥ १८ ॥

A (medicated) oil prepared by duly cooking it with the decoction of a Tula weight of Vasa-roots should be taken by a man after having performed a Homa ceremony with a thousand libations for the expansion of his intellectual faculty and the increase of the duration of his life on earth. A Tula weight of barley grains should be powdered. The preparation of this barley powder (gradually) taken with honey and powdered Pippali increases one’s capacity for study. 17-18

मध्वामलकचूर्णानि सुवर्णमिति च त्रयम् । प्राश्यारिष्टगृहीतोऽपि मुच्यते प्राणसंशयात् ।। १९ ।।

शतावरीघृतं सम्यगुपयुक्तं दिने दिने । सक्षौद्रं ससुवर्णञ्च नरेन्द्रं स्थापयेद् वशे ॥ २० ॥

गोचन्दना मोहनिका मधुकं माक्षिकं मधु । सुवर्णमिति संयोगः पेयः सौभाग्यमिच्छता | ॥ २१ ॥

The use of pulverised Amalaka and gold with honey imparts vitality to a dying man. A regular use of the Satavari-Ghrita mixed with honey and pulverised gold enables a man to subjugate even his king. A compound consisting of Go-candana, Mohanika honey and gold should be taken by a man wishing a good turn to his destiny. 19-21

पद्मनीलोत्पलक्वाथे यष्टीमधुकसंयुते । ● सर्पिरासादितं गव्यं ससुवर्ण सदा पिबेत् ॥ २२ ॥

पयश्चानुपिबेत् सिद्धं तेषामेव समुद्भवे । अलक्ष्मीघ्नं सदाऽऽयुष्यं राज्याय सुभगाय च ।। २३ ।।

Clarified butter cooked with an admixture of the pasted Yastimadhu and with the decoction of Padma and Nilotpala should be regularly taken with gold, and then a potion of milk cooked with the foregoing drugs should be taken. It invariably removes the evil features (of both mind and body ), and gives a good turn to fortune. It increases longevity and makes the user (fortunate like ) a king. 22-23

यत्र नोदीरितो मन्त्रो योगेष्वेतेषु साधने । शब्दिता तत्र सर्वत्र गायत्री त्रिपदा भवेत् ॥ २४ ॥

पाप्मानं नाशयेन्त्येता दद्युश्चौषधयः श्रियम् । कुर्युर्नागबलञ्चापि मनुष्यममरोपमम् ॥ २५ ॥

परतन्त्रावलोकनम् । सतताध्ययनं वादः तद्विद्या चार्यसेवा च बुद्धिमेधाकरो गणः ॥ २६ ॥

आयुष्यं भोजनं जीर्णे वेगानाञ्चाविधारणम् । ब्रह्मचर्यमहिंसा च साहसानाञ्च वर्जनम् ॥ २७ ॥

The Tri-padi (lit three-footed) Gayatri should be recited in connection with the use of any of these elixirs where no Mantra would be found to be specifically mentioned. The use of the foregoing medicinal compounds improves one’s beauty, surrounds a man with the majesty and effulgence of the gods and makes him as strong as an elephant. Constant study, discussions (on philosophical and scientific topics). discussions in other subjects and residence with professors or men learned in the respective branches of knowledge, are the best means for improving memory and expanding one’s intellect. Eating after the digestion of a previous meal, non-repression of any natural urgings of the body, annihilation of all killing propensities, perfect continence, self-control and refraining from rash and hazardous undertakings, should be deemed the keys to a long life. 24-27

इति सुश्रुत संहितायां चिकित्सितस्थाने मेधायुष्कामीयं रसायनचिकित्सितं नामाष्टाविंशोऽध्यायः ।। २८ ।। –

Thus ends the Twenty-eighth Chapter of the Chikitsa-Sthana in the Susruta Samhita which deals with elixirs and remedial agents for improving the memory and intellect and increasing longevity.


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