Vibhuti also called Bhasma and Thiruneeru refers to ash got by burning. It refers to two things, burning of metals to mix along with herbs to use as a medicine usually referred to as bhasma and the second is burning cow dung to apply on the forehead which is a Hindu tradition. Holy ash is applied on the forehead to remind us that even our body is going to turn into ash one day thereby always reminding us of the impermanence of our life . The act of applying holy ash always remind us that this world is maya and since we always are reminded of our impermanence, we don’t get too attached to worldly things.
What is Vibhuti?
Usually vibhuti refers to ash that is got by burning different ingredients and it can be used internally or externally. We burn native cow dung to ash and apply it in between eyebrows (agna chakra) and the throat (vishuddhi chakra). We usually apply it every morning and in the evening after our prayers.
In olden days, metals and minerals were burned and mixed with herbs and given internally for treating various illness. Adding burned ash drastically affected the effectiveness of the herbs that they were mixed along with. Burning at high temperatures and subsequent cooling altered the state of the metal and the nano particles of the metal helped the drug reach it’s target site much faster and the dosage required also was less. The ash that was obtained is called bhasma.
For eg, swarna bhasma is prepared form gold, godanti bhasma is prepared from gypsum, shankh bhasma is prepared from conch shell, mandur bhasma is prepared from iron oxide, vanga bhasma is prepared from tin, heerak bhasma is prepared from diamond, etc. Apart from the above mentioned bhasmas there are loads of other bhasmas prepared from various ingredients and their names include tamra, hira, motion, loha, yashad, etc.
These are all very important ayurvedic preparations that is used internally for treating different illness and should only be consumed under the strict supervision of an experienced ayurvedic practitioner. I would suggest to never internally consume bhasma at home without consulting an expert.
Applying Vibhuti On Our Forehead Benefits:
1. Increases Positive Energy:
Holy ash increases the positive energy. The smell, the act of applying it, the chanting before it, everything increases the positive energy. It is also one of the reasons our mothers and grandmothers always insisted we pray morning and evening daily and apply vibhuti on our forehead.
2. Prevents Headaches:
3. Regulates The Chakras:
4. Treats Cold:
5. Increases Compassion For Others:
Where To Get Vibhuti?
How To Make Vibhuti?
Traditionally to make the vibhuthi, we use karukkai (semi grown paddy grains) from the paddy fields. They are are usually discarded and we use it to make the holy ash. To make the holy ash, cow dung is made into balls, flattened and sun dried well. Then on an auspicious day they are layered with karukkai and hay till they are about 6 to 7 feet in height.
After the prayers and chanting, fire is lit, it burns for several days. The hay retains the heat and the karukkai prevents it from burning instantly which results in white ash which is collected after several days. But to make the vibhooti, cow dung that is got from organic grass fed native cows should be used.
We usually store holy ash in a special wooden box called thiruneer poti which is usually passed on from generation to generation. But since it will be difficult for many to collect cow dung and do the whole process, I thought I will share an alternate method.
How To Make Vibhuti – The Easy Way!
1. These are some of the dried herbs used in the homam. I am sorry for not taking pictures of all the ingredients, I didn’t want to disturb others during the pooja……
2. During the pooja the ingredients are offered along with pure ghee accompanied by holy chanting.
3. The pooja went on for almost 3 to 4 hours. Once the pooja is finished, let the ash cool overnight.
4.Take a thin muslin cloth and tie it taut around a vessel using a rope.
6. Take the ash and place it on the taut cloth and rub it gently around to get a fine powder.
7. The resulting mixture should be as fine as this.
- If you don’t do these poojas at home, you can easily get the ash from your friends or neighbors when they do the pooja in their home, every one will be more than willing to share it.
- Holy ash lasts for years without getting spoilt.
- Try to sieve it only through a thin muslin cloth to get a very very fine mixture.
- You can use this vibhuthi for young kids too..
- You can use the ash of any homam.