Tulsi: Holy Basil
Tulsi, or Holy Basil is an herbal remedy used for a lot of common ailments. Here’s a list of some medicinal uses of tulsi, from Healthlibrary:
- The juice of tulsi leaves can be used to bring down fever. Extract of tulsi leaves in fresh water should be given every 2 to 3 hours. In between, one can keep giving sips of cold water. In children, it is every effective in bringing down the temperature.
- Tulsi is an important constituent of many Ayurvedic cough syrups and expectorants. It helps to mobilize mucus in bronchitis and asthma. Chewing tulsi leaves relieves cold and flu.
- For earache, a few drops of tulsi extract, if instilled, relieves the symptoms promptly.
- The juice of fresh leaves, flower tops and slender roots is a very god antidote for snake and scorpion bite.
Its oil is rich in vitamin C, carotene, calcium and phosphorus. Besides, it has antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties.
- Ayurvedic tulsi preparations have significantly reduced the symptoms of viral hepatitis.
- In diabetics it helps in lowering the blood sugar level.
- Its anti-spasmodic property can be utilised to relieve abdominal colics. The extracts are also helpful in digestive disorders.
- Tulsi leaves have properties similar to the currently available anti-TB drugs like Streptomycin and Isoniazide.
Oil of tulsi has been used as a potent anti-malarial drug. It also has mosquito repellent properties.
- It raises the human body immunity by increasing the antibody production.
- Experimental studies on animals have shown anti-stress activity with tulsi extract.
- Tulsi has anti-fertility effects by reducing the estrogen hormone levels in females and decreasing the sperm count in men.
- It is also used to treat ringworm of the skin.
Tulsi: The Holy Power Plant
The holy Indian basil is a miracle plant
The ‘tulsi’ plant or Indian basil is an important symbol in the Hindu religious tradition. The name ‘tulsi’ connotes “the incomparable one”. Tulsi is a venerated plant and Hindus worship it in the morning and evening. Tulsi grows wild in the tropics and warm regions. Dark or Shyama tulsi and light or Rama tulsi are the two main varieties of basil, the former possessing greater medicinal value. Of the many varieties, the
Krishna or Shyama tulsi is commonly used for worship.
Tulsi As A Deity
The presence of tulsi plant symbolizes the religious bent of a Hindu family. A Hindu household is considered incomplete if it doesn’t have a tulsi plant in the courtyard. Many families have the tulsi planted in a specially built structure, which has images of deities installed on all four sides, and an alcove for a small earthen oil lamp. Some households can even have up to a dozen tulsi plants on the verandah or in the garden forming a “tulsi-van” or “tulsivrindavan” – a miniature basil forest.
Places that tend to inspire concentration and places ideal for worship, according to the Gandharv Tantra, include “grounds overgrown with tulsi plants”. The Tulsi Manas Mandir at
Varanasi is one such famous temple, where tulsi is worshipped along with other Hindu gods and goddesses. Vaishnavites or believers of Lord Vishnuworship the tulsi leaf because it’s the one that pleases Lord Vishnu the most. They also wear beaded necklaces made of tulsi stems. The manufacture of these tulsi necklaces is a cottage industry in pilgrimages and temple towns.
Tulsi As An Elixir
Apart from its religious significance, it is of great medicinal significance, and is a prime herb in Ayurvedic treatment. Marked by its strong aroma and a stringent taste, tusli is a kind of “the elixir of life” as it promotes longevity. The plant’s extracts can be used to prevent and cure many illnesses and common ailments like common cold, headaches, stomach disorders, inflammation, heart disease, various forms of poisoning and malaria. Essential oil extracted from karpoora tulsi is mostly used for medicinal purposes though of late it is used in the manufacture of herbal toiletry.
An Organic blog about organic farming, tulsi (Holy Basil) and sustainability. tulsi – “The Queen of Herbs” – is the most sacred herb of India and has been revered for over five thousand years, as a healing balm for body, mind and spirit, and is known fot its amazing number of health benefits.
In the Hindu mythology, tulsi is very dear to Lord Vishnu. Tulsi is ceremonially married to Lord Vishnu annually on the 11th bright day of the month of Karttika in the lunar calendar. This festivalcontinues for five days and concludes on the full moon day, which falls in mid October. This ritual, called the ‘Tulsi Vivaha’ inaugurates the annual marriage season in India.