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Musali – Asparagus adscendens

Musali Asparagus adscendens is a medicinal plant. It is known by different names in Ayurveda, such as – Talamuli, Musali, Chamara Musali etc. Musali Asparagus adscendens is known for its aphrodisiac property which enhances sexual power. The Ayurvedic classics mention two varieties of Musali viz. Shweta (white) and Krishna (black). The word Musali alone denotes the white variety, which is commonly used. The white variety is commonly known as Safed Musali and the black variety as Kali Musali. Though the black varieties are supposed to the superior in properties, both the varieties have, more or less, similar properties and uses. In this article both are described together.

Literary Review

  • In the Vedas, the descriptions regarding the plant Musali Asparagus adscendens is not available.
  • Description of Musali Asparagus adscendens is not available in Charaka Samhita and Ashtanga Hridayam.
  • In Sushruta Samhita, Musali Asparagus adscendens is mentioned in Chikitsa sthana 7th chapter and Uttara Sthana 51st chapter. Sushruta has mentioned the therapeutic efficiency of Musali.
  • Raja Nighantu, Bhavaprakash Nighantu, Priya Nighantu and Kaiyadev Nighantu has given synonyms, guna (properties) and karma (actions) of Musali Asparagus adscendens.
  • In Danwantari Nighantu the plant Musali is not mentioned.

Types & Varieties

Musali is classified into two types:

  1. Kali Musali – Curculigo Orchioides Gaerttu (Amaryllidaceae)
  1. Safed Musali – Asparagus Adscendens Roxb (Liliaceae)

Also, following varieties of Safed Musali is found –

  1. Chlorophytum Laxum Br.
  2. Chlorophytum Tuberosum Baker
  3. Ampelocissus Araneosa Planch (Vitaceae)

Tala muli is a Sanskrit synonym of Kali Musali.

Synonyms

In Ayurveda, many synonyms of Musali Asparagus adscendens plant has been described in Sanskrit. Few of them are listed below –

  • Shveta
  • Talapatrika – Resembles roots like that of tala (Taal)
  • Dholi
  • Hiranya Pushpee
  • Godhapadi
  • Karjuri
  • Bhutali – Ground Palm
  • Kalini
  • Samaraja – Its stem is deep reddish colour
  • Talapatri – Leaves resemble tender leaves of tala
  • Tejaraja – Its mucilaginous taste
  • Vrushakanda
  • Bhoraja – stem of plant flat and divided by grooves into 3 columns
  • Mousali – Cut the doshas and cure diseases
  • Musali – It destroys Guda (rectum) and vata roga
  • Madavruksha
  • Talamuli – Resembles root like Tala
  • Vrukshakanda
  • Suvaha
  • Talamulika – Resembles root like tala
  • Godhapadi
  • Soukari
  • Hemapushpee – Rootstock long, tuberous and flower bright yellow
  • Mahapushpa
  • Kanchana Puspika
  • Varahi – Tuberous underground portion of plant is dug up by boar of eating
  • Kamaraja – A reddish brown tuberous root, strongly astringent
  • Deergha Kandika – Resembles roots like that of tala
  • Uchchata

Classical Categorization

In Ayurvedic classics, plants have been categorised under Varga and Gana. Like wise Musali Asparagus adscendens comes under –

According to Priya Nighantu – Saradi varga

According to Prof P.V. Sharma – Vrushyadi varga, Sukrajanana gana

Vernacular Names

Musali Asparagus adscendens is known by different names in different languages. Have a look below –

  • Sanskrit – Musali
  • English – Musali
  • Hindi – Musali, Hazar Muli, Shatavari, Shatmuli
  • Marathi – Safed Musali
  • Gujarati – Dholi Musali, Ujali Musali
  • Malayalam – Tannir Vettang, Shedeveli
  • Punjabi – Syahoo Musali
  • Bengali – Dholi Musali, Talamuli
  • Kannada – Bili Musali
  • Tamil – Nilapana, Nilappanaikkilanku
  • Oriya – Talamuli, Talamulika

Systemic Classification

  • Kingdom – Plantae
  • Subkingdom – Phenerogamae
  • Division – Angiospermae
  • Class – Monocotyledons
  • Subclass – Liliforae
  • Nature order/ Family – Liliaceae
  • Genus – Asparagus
  • Species – Adscendens

Useful Parts

The useful part of Musali Asparagus adscendens for medicinal purpose Mula (roots).

Dosage

Churnas (root powder) – 3 – 6 gm

Ayurvedic Properties

In Ayurveda, properties of every plants / drug are described by Rasa, Guna, Veerya, Vipaka and doshaghnata. Have a look below to know about Ayurvedic properties of Musali Asparagus adscendens –

  • Rasa – Madura
  • Guna – Guru, Snigdha
  • Veerya – Sheeta
  • Vipaka – Madhura
  • Doshaghnata – Vata Pitta Shamaka, Kapha Vardhaka

Indications of Musali Asparagus adscendens

Musali Asparagus adscendens is indicated in following diseases –

  • Arsha (piles), Dourbalya (debility or weakness), Asthi Bhanga (bone fracture), Kamala (jaundice), Shula (Abdominal colic and pain), Mutrakrichchha (dysuria), Pravahika (diarrhoea) Atisara (dysentery) etc.

External Uses

  • Musali prepared as a paste with goats milk or honey and applied locally increases complexion of face or skin.

Internal Uses

  • 1 Tola (12 gm) Musali Churna mixed with equal quantity of sugar if taken with milk helps to cure the Napusmakata (impotency), Pradara (menstrual disorders), Svapnasrava (nocturnal emission/ nightfall), Atisara (dysentery), Pravahika (diarrhoea) etc.
  • Badhiryam (Deafness) – Churna of Musali and bakuchi to be taken with Ghee or honey.
  • For Mukhakanti (face glow), as a cosmetic to brighten the complexion of the face, Musali prepared as a paste with goats milk or honey and applied locally over the face.
  • Vrushyam (aphrodisiac) – Musali powder to be taken with Ghee followed by milk.
  • Aphrodisiac – Powder of Musali root, Guduchi satva, Kapikachchhu, Gokshura, Shalmali and Amalaki are milxed together in the proper ratio. It is mixed with milk added with Ghee and taken orally. This formula helps to arouse sexual urge.
  • Tubers boiled in milk and sugar are used in Spermatorrhoea, Chronic Leucorrhea, also in Diarrhoea, Dysentery and general debility.

Pharmaceutical Preparations

Many Ayurvedic medicines are prepared from Musali Asparagus adscendens. A few are listed below –

  • Musali Paka

Photographs of Musali

(Click on image to zoom)

Curculigo orchioides
Curculigo orchioides

image – Ravi Vaidyanathan

Chlorophytum borivilianum
Chlorophytum borivilianum

image by Dinesh Valke

Chlorophytum tuberosum
Chlorophytum tuberosum

image by Dinesh Valke

Chlorophytum borivilianum
Chlorophytum borivilianum

image by Dinesh Valke

Chlorophytum tuberosum
Chlorophytum tuberosum

image by Shubhada Nikharge

chlorophytum borivilianum
chlorophytum borivilianum

image source – merinews.com

Musali Asparagus adscendens

image source – slideshare.net

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