Bhavaprakasha

Bhavaprakasha is the famous work of Bhavamishra. It is the final text to be included in the Laghutrayi which has retained its popularity amongst Ayurvedic scholars for more than 400 years. The text retains its originality by including new concepts and new drugs, at the same time not diverting from the classical texts. Bhavamishra was the son of Latakan Mishra, and probably a resident of Bihar. He can be lpaced at 16th Cent A.D., towards the end of medieval period and at the beginning of modern era.

Salient Features :

  1. Madanapal introduced a large number of new drugs into Ayurveda as a result of his interaction with Muslim traders. They include Parasikayavani, Ahiphena, Bhanga, Jayapala, Kharbuz, Pindakharjura, Suleimaani and Amruthaphal.
  2. Bhavaprakasha added the following drugs to the above;
    • Parasika Vacha
    • Dwipantara Vacha
    • Akarakarabha (It has already been in use since Sharangadhara)
    • Pudina
    • Darusitha
    • Maarkandika
    • Kalambaka
    • Sauvira
    • Chouhada
  3. Apart from the above the following new drugs are described by Bhavaprakasha;
    • Chandrashura
    • Kulanjan
    • Aamragandhi Haridra
    • Aranya Haridar
    • Chukra
    • Latakasturi
    • Gandhakokila
    • Gandhamalathi
    • Chillaka
    • Charmakaaraaluka
    • Aamravartha
    • Makhanna
    • Kumudabija
    • Cheenaaka
    • Chichinda
    • Garjara
    • Aaluka
    • Khasataila
    • Sarjarasataila
  4. Also, Pushkaramula has been described as a variety of Kushta.
  5. The root of Swarnakshiri has been termed as Choka.
  6. Two varieties of Karpura Pakwa and Apakwa, have been described.
  7. Kasturi is described to be of three varieties Kaaamarupi(Assamese), Naipaali and Kaashmiri. Kaamarupi variety is considered to be the best.
  8. Kumkuma is also described to be of 3 varieties ; Kaashmiri, Baahlika and Paarasika. Kumkuma obtained from Kashmirm is considered to be the best amongst the above.
  9. Tagara: Tagara and Pindatagara.
  10. Ashmantaka has been taken as a synonym of Kaanchanara.
  11. Karanja: Naktamaala, Poothikaranja and Karanji.
  12. Kukkuradru described by Madanapala is described as Kukkundara.
  13. The fruit of Chavika is termed as Gajapippalai.
  14. Madanapala has described the two varieties of Vruddhadaraka.
  15. BP describes Ashtavarga in detail and also suggests alternative drugs that can be used in its place.
  16. Chaturbija and Dhanyapanchaka are two new groups described by BP.
  17. Under mineral drugs, Gold is described to be of 5 types. Similarly 3 varieties of Silver have also been described.
  18. Yasada (Zinc) has also been described, apart from many sources of Muktha(Pearl).
  19. Two varieties of Kadali (Banana): Manikya and Champaka described.
  20. Alternative drugs have been described for many, keeping in view the hardship in procuring them. But, BP also cautions that they can never become the original drug and that they are just replacements.
  21. Methods of examination of drugs, classification of land based on different castes: Brahman, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Shoodra and 5 fold classification of plant drugs: Vanaspathi, Vaanaspathya, Kshuup, Valli and Oshadhi are added featurs of BP. Bhavamishra adds that the drugs collected from a particular land should be used for treating the respective class of people.
  22. The part to be used in a particular drug is dercribed with the aid of suitable examples.
  23. The 7 basic padharthas of Dravya Guna are described beautifully in one shloka.
  24. Bhavamishra follows Sharangadhara in describing Dipana Pachanadi karmas.