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Synonyms and meanings of Cannabis in Ayurveda

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What lies in the name? Well, it does, and this question becomes redundant when something or someone has scores of names to describe their functions. The functions of the subject what it does or effects on the object. The ancient Indian literature and mythology shares on record the myriads of names from Lord Shiva to Rama and from Krishna to Lord Dhanwantri if we mainly talk about Ayurveda. 

The reason for giving these lords numerous names is to describe their powers in their names.

Any subject or object of some importance carries synonyms, and more are the names, more is the importance it holds. Let us specifically discuss the case of Cannabis here. This plant might have attracted people from the western world in the 20th century, but its significance lies in Ayurveda literature since time immemorial. From ‘Sharangdhar Samhita to ‘Rasendra Sara Sangraha, and from ‘Bhavpraskahs to Rasendra Chintamani’ a total of 34 different names have been given in these ancient works of literature.

The synonyms carry the meaning and convey the functions that ‘Cannabis’ does in the body or mind. So, let us discuss some of the synonyms of Cannabis and their meanings/utilities that can enable you to learn and know about the wonder herb.

  1. Sivaluli– ‘Bhanga’ or Cannabis is known to be originated from Lord Shiva himself and therefore has been used in Shiva Poojan along with leaves of Indian bel. The offering of the leaves on ‘Shiv-Lingam’ shows the significance the herb carries.
  2. Vijaya– Cannabis is called ‘Vijaya’ as it can give you victory over the six desires of the mind.
  3. Bhangi– Cannabis is called ‘Bhangi’ as it treats ‘Taapa traya’ which is referred to 3 basic types of diseases, namely adhyātmika, adhibhautika, adhidaivika.
  4. Ganja– Ganja is one of the oldest and common names of Cannabis Sativa. It is dried leaves of Cannabis Sativa and called ‘Hemp’ in English. Since it has the properties to intoxicate like alcohol, it is called Ganja.
  5. Vimrardini– ‘Vimradan’ in Sanskrit means pressing and squeezing, the Swaras or Juice of ‘Bhanga’ made with this pressing; hence, it is given this name.
  6. Divya– Cannabis is called as ‘Divya’ as the judicious use of ‘Bhanga’ gives exhilaration and pleasure.
  7. Siddha– ‘Cannabis’ is said to be a holy herb as it has been used as a sacrament and its usage in almost every known and unknown mind and body diseases.
  8. Siddida– Cannabis bestows enlightenment as even in the modern-day ‘Naga’ sadhus have been found using it for doing the practice of the hardest ‘Hatha’ yoga. The toughest form of ‘Yoga’ which requires practice with perseverance.
  9. Siddha muli– An ascetic is a person who follows the pursuit of contemplative ideals and practices extreme self-denial or self-mortification for religious reasons. The cannabis plant does not require any efforts for its cultivation, and like a person who leads an austerely simple life, it grows humbly and only at its own.
  10. Manonmai– Cannabis accomplishes in winning over the problems of the mind.
  11. Madhu Drava– The consumption of Cannabis stimulates ‘Sudha Drava’ or happy hormones such as dopamine in the brain and gives a state of happiness.
  12. Pasupasavinasini– Cannabis restores health from non-human behaviour.
  13. Kalaghni– Under acute conditions like severe pain, acute abdomen, and cholera, the use of Cannabis has shown patients recovering from these conditions which make its name as ‘Kalaghni’ or victory from death quite apt.
  14. Sarvarogaghni– Cannabis is used in two hundred Ayurveda formulation, and its usage is mentioned in almost every disease that it is rightly being referred to as ‘Sarvarogaghni’ or a cure for diseases.
  15. Chidahlaada– Cannabis is called as ‘Chidahlaada’ as it has been used to give happiness and joy at every festive occasion.

Cannabis is the herb which has been used by Vaidyas, Rishis and ordinary citizens since times immemorial before it received a bad name and a taboo in the early 20th century. If we closely study its names and references from where it got its various names and shun the sceptical view to allow more scientific studies on it. The chances are there the world would accept Cannabis as the herbal medicinal plant, not as a roadside harmful and redundant grass.

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