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Herbs for Meditation and Yoga Practice

Below are planned, unique, primarily Indian herbs for yoga practice. These are available through many herb or Ayurveda stores or can be purchased online.

Arjuna/ Terminalia arjuna
Arjuna is a tonic and rejuvenative for the heart that promotes vyana  vayu and increases prana. It helps develop devotion and gives us the extra courage and energy for our spiritual practice, just as Arjuna was able to fight for dharma at the side of Lord Krishna.

Amalaki/ Emblica officinalis
Amalaki is a tonic and rejuvenative for all the tissues. It balances the doshas and increases ojas. Taken in the form of a jelly called Chyavan Prash,it is an excellent food for yoga practice and a good energy booster. It is a prime tonic for young children,pregnant women, the elderly and anyone in need of extra strength and

Aloe Vera
Aloe is an entire medicine chest in itself. Relative to yoga practice, it is excellent for cleansing the plasma, skin, blood and the liver, all the main physical and pranic systems. It has rejuvenative effects for the female reproductive system as well.

Ashwagandha/ Withania somnifera
Ashwagandha is the best ayurvedic tonic for both body and mind. It strengthens and
nourishes the muscles, tendons, bones and nerves and builds ojas and tejas, fortifying the immune system. It is good for joint and nerve pain and is specific for lowering anxiety. It counters insomnia, calms the mind and promotes concentration, meditation and deep sleep. Ashwagandha is excellent in sports medicine for increasing endurance and protecting the bones and joints from injury.

Calamus/ Acorus calamus
Calamus, also known as sweet flag, is a stimulant to the mind and senses. It clears mucus from the head, throat and lungs. It improves digestion, but in large dosages it becomes an emetic. In Ayurveda it is mainly used to clear the subtle channels of toxins, phlegm and blockages. Calamus increases the powers of speech, reason and intelligence and sharpens discrimination. It is excellent for mantra and meditation. It aids in spiritual study and is said to increase knowledge of the higher Self.

Gotu Kola/ Brahmi
Brahmi is a close relative of gotu kola and is the preferable herb but gotu kola can be used as a substitute when brahmi is not available. Brahmi is a sedative, calmative, muscle relaxant and pain-relieving agent. It has diuretic, hemostatic, and alterative properties for toxic blood conditions and counters adrenal fatigue. It aids in controlling anger and attachment and for cooling and calming the mind. Its Sanskrit name, brahmi, reflects its usage to promote knowledge of Brahman, the cosmic reality.Brahmi and its relatives grows wild in many tropical areas, including India and Hawaii. Brahmi juice taken in aloe juice is an excellent detoxifying
agent for body and mind. Prepared as a medicated ghee, it is excellent for the liver and the nerves. Fresh
brahmi leaves preserved in raw honey is a good soma-producing agent.

Guduchi (Amrit)/ Giloy/ Tinospora cordifolia
Guduchi removes heat and toxins from a deep level of the tissues and nerves. It also cools and cleanses the mind. It is a rejuvenative for pitta and balances tejas. It is an excellent tonic for the immune system, particularly important for countering chronic low grade fevers or difficult infections from Epstein Barre virus to AIDS. It increases our positive energy in conditions of debility-like chronic fatigue syndrome.

Guggul/ Commiphora mukul
Guggul promotes flexibility of the muscles, ligaments and bones and is a prime medicine for arthritis. It also strengthens the heart, lowers cholesterol and prevents heart attacks. It keeps the blood clean and sattvic so it can vitalize all the tissues. Guggul regulates blood sugar and counters diabetes (a common disease of yogis whose metabolism can go through unusual fluctuations). It combines well with triphala as an excellent cleanser for the plasma and blood.

Jatamamsi/ Nardostachys jatamansi
Jatamamsi is the best ayurvedic calmative herb, with soothing and strengthening properties for the brain and nervous tissue. It can be combined with ashwagandha as a brain tonic for vata and with cleansing agents like gotu kola for cooling the mind. Though related to valerian, it is a more balanced herb and easier to take. It
improves our mental function and acuity rather than simply sedating it.

Kava Kava/ Piper methysticum

Kava kava improves circulation and relieves pain both to the musculoskeletal and nervous systems. It counters vata, promotes vyana, and facilitates rest, sleep and deep meditation. It helps promote a deep level of flexibility and detachment in both body and mind.

Shankha Pushpi/ Evoluvus alsinodes
Shankha pushpi is an excellent stimulant and tonic for the mind. It improves memory, concentration and perception, and aids in the rejuvenation of the brain. It stimulates our higher cerebral functions, improving our overall intelligence and creativity. Sarasvata churna, a powder prepared with this herb, is widely used in attention deficit disorder and helps prevent loss of memory.

Shilajit is a mineral pitch from the Himalayas and carries the healing power of these great mountains. Shilajit possesses great curative powers and is considered capable of treating many diseases, particularly those of the aging process. It is an important rejuvenative and tonic particularly for kapha, vata, and the kidneys, as in the case of people who have long suffered from diabetes and asthma. It can be taken for general health maintenance and is good for those who do much mental work or practice yoga.

Triphala, an important ayurvedic laxative formula, has an important usage in yoga. It controls the apana vayu, the downward moving air, and aids in the absorption of prana in the large intestine. It helps balance the metabolism and provides nutrition for the bones and nerves. Triphala facilitates the absorption of pure prana from our food, thus allowing for a more complete practice of pranayama or development of the life-force.

Tulsi (Holy Basil)/ Ocinum sanctum
Tulsi is a form of basil that is an important herb for clearing the mind and brain and for increasing both wisdom and devotion. It promotes our higher pranas and is excellent for colds, flu, and sinus allergies. It is good to put a little tulsi in the water that one drinks.

in reference with Ayurveda and Pancha Karma by Dr Sunil Joshi

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Note:-This is a blog about health, nutirtion, diet food, nutritional supplement, health problems, weed, medicinal plants, healthy living. In this health and wellness blog I am discussing the herbal uses, effects of weed, about herbs, food for vegetarians, medicinal plants like celery, dandelion, amla, milk thistle and all other natural healers for healthy living. The motive behind this blog is to bring awareness among people about its surrounding, the mother nature and its precious gifts. The Gifts that we have forgotten long back. Please consult your doctor or herbal practitioner before using any herbs.