Tulsi, also known as Holy Basil, has been revered as a sacred plant that has numerous healing properties. This sacred plant has been used for thousands of years for it’s mind enhancing properties (medhya) and physical benefits earning the names “The Elixir of Life” and “Mother Medicine of Nature”. Tulsi is praised as the embodiment of Lakshmi, the divine archetype of wealth, love and prosperity.
In Ayurveda, Tulsi is classified as a rasayana – a class of adaptogenic herbs that restore balance and harmony in the mind, body and spirit. Studies demonstrate that Tulsi is an anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, smooth muscle relaxant and immunity modulator. It’s properties assist in the treatment of cough, asthma, tuberculosis, malaria, hepatitis, cold, fever, headache, arthritis, diabetes, cancer, nervous system disorders, anti-ineffective and reduce the effects of chronic stress. In Chinese Medicine, Holy Basil is considered a “Shen Tonic” which nourishes the spirit. Yogis, rishis and sages use Tulsi to restore balance to emotions and subtle electromagnetic fields of the chakras.
I started drinking Tulsi tea by the advice of Dr. Jayagopal Parla, my Ayurveda guru, when I embarked on my Ayurveda Doctorate degree. At that time, I suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, stress, chronic night mares and night terrors. He recommended I drink a tea made of Tulsi powder with two other mind healing herbs called Brahmi and Shankhapushpi twice a day. At first I did not notice a big difference, but after a couple months, I noticed a significant decrease of nightmares and flashbacks. After several more months, my spirit was further uplifted, my emotions became more balanced and my meditation practice was enriched. I still cherish Tulsi and drink it in a blend that I’ve adopted called Happy Mind. If you are interested in purchasing Happy Mind tea blend, I have it available for $23.00 for a 6 oz bag. I recommend steeping 2 teaspoons of Happy Mind blend in 2 cups hot water and drinking it daily or as directed by your Ayurvedic specialist.
Varieties: Ocimum tenuiflorum, Ocimum gratissimum, Ocimum sanctum
RASA (taste): Katu (pungent), Tikta (bitter)
GUNA (properties): Laghu (light), Teekshna (penetrating)
VIRYA (power): Ushna (warming)
VIPAKA (post digestive effect): Katu (pungent)
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