Author Topic: Flora Of Uttarakhand - उत्तराखंड के फल, फूल एव वनस्पति  (Read 300541 times)

Devbhoomi,Uttarakhand

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Bhishma Kukreti

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- Kunj/Kunaj (Artemesia nilagiraca) an auspicious and Medicinal plant
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Plant Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) - 3
By: Bhishma Kukreti, M.Sc. (Botany) (Mythology Research Scholar)

Botanical name: Artemesia nilagiraca
Hindi name: Dauna
Local name: Kunja /Kunaj /कुणज
  Kunaj/Kunja widely spread  is an auspicious plant for Garhwalis and Kumaonis. The small plant is aromatic and is anti-insects too. The leaves of Kunaj are used in worshiping rituals. The plant leaves is an essential ingredient for Pooja as alternate of flower.
Scientists state that the plant is used for extracting oil for medicines. 
 The following folk song  shows the respect for Kunaj plant
हरि कुणजो
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हरि कुणजो कै मैना फूललो ? हरि कुणजो कै मैना फूललो ?
हरि कुणजो मौ मैना मौळलो .हरि कुणजो मौ मैना मौळलो
हरि कुणजो मौळण लगि गे ,हरि कुणजो मौळण लगि गे
हरि कुणजो मौळण लगि गे ,हरि कुणजो मौळण लगि गे
हरि कुणजो चैत मा फूललो,हरि कुणजो कै मैना फूललो
हरि कुणजो चैत मा फूललो,हरि कुणजो कै मैना फूललो
हरि कुणजो फूलण लगि गे, हरि कुणजो फूलण लगि गे
हरि कुणजो फूलण लगि गे, हरि कुणजो फूलण लगि गे
हरि कुणजो कै मैना फूललो ? हरि कुणजो कै मैना फूललो ?
हरि कुणजो मौ मैना मौळलो .हरि कुणजो मौ मैना मौळलो
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जाति- झोड़ा
(तोताराम ढौंडियाल संकलित , गढवाली गीत संग्र , धाद प्रकाशन , देहरादून से साभार)

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*I am indebted to Professor R.D Badoni for helping me in finding botanical name
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Plant Mythology , Traditions , Garhwal, Uttarakhand ; Plant Mythology , Traditions , Kumaon, Uttarakhand ;Plant Mythology , Traditions , Uttarakhand; Plant Mythology , Traditions , Uttarakhand, Himalaya; Plant Mythology , Traditions , Uttarakhand, north India; Plant Mythology , Traditions , Uttarakhand, South Asia



Bhishma Kukreti

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    Sting Nettle uses in Uttarakhand Mythology
 (Herbs and Animals in Uttarakhand Mythology -1)
(Herbs in Uttarakhand Mythology part-1)
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Bhishma Kukreti (Mythology Research Scholar)
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 Mythology means study of old beliefs. Those beliefs might be scientifically correct, incorrect  or might be today, proved harmful.
  Garhwal has old history and the people have been using herbs and animals as myths (stories, remedies, rituals, proverbs, daily practices etc.).
 In Mahabharata, Kalidas literature, there are description of various plants and animals of Uttarakhand those were used as local ritual practices.
     Apart from food, medicines, and packing material uses, Uttarakhand have been using sting nettle or Kandali or Siyunn for various rituals too.
        Sting Nettle uses in avoiding epidemics
     Uttarakhand people believed that sting nettle is anti-cholera, anti-pox and anti-malignant influences and troubles. In nearest past and still today, people used to hang the sting nettle stem on door wall top plate (Singar ) for stopping entry of cholera, pox, malignant influences.
   It is believed that sting nettle drives away the bad spirits. In epidemics, people used to keep sting nettle plants outside of rooms too.
  People also use Kandali in chicken pox (dadru) diseases. People kept sting nettle leaves besides the patient.
        Sting Nettle in Marriage Party
   When a marriage party takes gift items, people used to keep sting nettle plants on top of gift items as a protecting deity representative.
          Sting Nettle while Bruising
     When thee is rice bruising in mortar for cooking ‘arsa’ sweet, people keep sting nettle plant  around mortar for protecting bad evils that spoils ‘arsa’ cooking. 
     
               Sting Nettle for getting rid of Evil Soul, Ghost (Bhut)
   When a person is affected by evil soul (Bhut/Bhoot) the tantric uses sting nettle plants for beating the affected person.
                 The people also use sting nettle leaves for improving the numb body parts.
            Sting Nettle in inaugurating Clay Stove
      When there is first wood burning in newly built clay oven, people burn sting nettle leaves with wood as auspicious norms.
               There are various folk sayings, adjectives, metaphors related to sting nettle in Uttarakhand.
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Bhishma Kukreti

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Timur Plant Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya)
 Plant Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) -2
By: Bhishma Kukreti (Mythology Research Scholar)
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 English name – Prickly Ash, Sichuan pepper or Toothache Tree
Botanical name –Xanthoxylum armatum
                        Traditional Medical Uses
   Timur or toothache tree is a shrub and found from 1000 meter to 2000 meter height in Uttarakhand hills, Himalaya.
   People use the plant parts as toothbrush, medicines for toothache, fever, cough remedies and stomach ache. Bhotiya community had been using ‘Timur’ as , business barter medium and using for food (spices, soup) too. Bhotiya community is main community for saving the heritage of Timur for centuries.
 In old age and still today in small quantity, people used to sell the Timur stick to pilgrims as toothbrush.
              Mythological Uses in Narsing Rituals

     Timur is an auspicious plant and they use Timur stick for various religious rituals.
      In jagar, Timur stick is supposed to be beloved for deity Narsing (Narsing ki lath). People keep a Timur Stick in Narsing Thau  where nursing idols are kept in house).
        Sanyasi or sadhu also keeps Timur stick.
              Use of Timur Stick in Yagyopavit Rituals
                   The person that goes for taking Janeu (scarred thread) first time has to go for begging nearby houses and he has to take Timur stick with him for begging.
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Bhishma Kukreti

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Surai (Danda Thor), Royal’s spurge: A Plant used  for Protecting from Evil Souls
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Plant Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) - 4
By: Bhishma Kukreti, M.Sc. (Botany) (Mythology Research Scholar)

  Botanical Name- Euphorbia rouliana
Hindi name – Danda Thor
Sanskrit Name- Nanda
    Surai or Danda Thor is common cactus of Uttarakhand. Surai juice is used in ear secretion (very rarely).
People also use latex of Surai as fish toxin in fishing.
   People of Uttarakhand use Surai more for protecting evil soul, diseases etc. People grow Surai on flower pot and keep Surai tree of house roof.
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Plant Mythology , Traditions , Garhwal, Uttarakhand ; Plant Mythology , Traditions , Kumaon, Uttarakhand ;Plant Mythology , Traditions , Uttarakhand; Plant Mythology , Traditions , Uttarakhand, Himalaya; Plant Mythology , Traditions , Uttarakhand, north India; Plant Mythology , Traditions , Uttarakhand, South Asia



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Uses of Khinna, Tiger’s milk Spruce (Sapium insigne) in Bandhan Rituals
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Plant Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) -
By: Bhishma Kukreti, M.Sc. (Botany) (Mythology Research Scholar)

 Botanical names – Falconeria insignis, Sapium insigne
Garhwali name -- Khinna, खिन्न
 Hindi name – Khinna, Khirun
Sanskrit name –Makulakah
 Khinna or Sapium insigne is 10-12 feet height small tree with pointed leaves and exudes milky sap.
  Khinaa or Sapium insigne Myths
   
People use Khinaa or Sapium insigne twigs at the time of Bandhan rituals (बंधाण पूजा). Mostly, when the buffalo delivers the kid, before the owners start taking /using milk of buffalo, the owner performs Bandhan rituals (बंधाण पूजा). The ritual performers use dry Khinna twigs for touching milk and butter milk pots at the time of puja. 
      Traditional uses of Khinna, Sapium insigne
People use Khinaa mostly, for fencing purposes and as fuel too.
   People use Khinna tree for making Damru (Drum), floats, match boxes ( K. S. Negi and K.S. Kanwal, 2009,Indian journals of Traditional Knowledge).
 Negi and Kanwal reported that people of Uttarakhand use Khinaa leaves as fish toxics for fishing. .

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Plant Myths logy , Traditions , Garhwal, Uttarakhand ; Plant Myths , Traditions , Kumaon, Uttarakhand ;Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, Himalaya; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, north India; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, South Asia



Bhishma Kukreti

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Bhutkeshi, Bhootkesi, Taggar, Moor: A Plant used for Warding off Evil Spirit
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Plant Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) - 6
By: Bhishma Kukreti, M.Sc. (Botany) (Mythology Research Student)

Botanical Name: Selinum vegenatum, Selinum vegenatum
Hindi Name –Bhutkesi
Garhwali name –Bhutkeshi or Taggar
Kumaoni Name- Moor
 Bhutkesi are found in Western Himalayas between 1800m to 3800 m.
                Traditional Medical Uses
 Bhutkeshi is a hair less plant but its rhizomes are with long hair.  In Ayurveda, the rhizomes and fruits  fruits have medicinal values. Roots are used as nervine sedative.
         Bhutkeshi Myths
 
      There is perception among people that Rhizomes of Bhutkeshi ward off the evil spirit. Tantra –Mantra performers use Bhutkeshi rhizomes in local rituals. People keep Bhutkeshi rhizomes with them in houses for keeping off Bhut (Evil Spirit).
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Reference: Harish Singh, 2008, Importance of local names of some useful in ethnobotanical study (Indian Journal of Traditional Knowledge, Vol. 7(2))
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Plant Myths logy , Traditions , Garhwal, Uttarakhand ; Plant Myths , Traditions , Kumaon, Uttarakhand ;Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, Himalaya; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, north India; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, South Asia



Bhishma Kukreti

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Tobacco: A plant used in Garhwali Mantra (Myths)
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Plant Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) - 7
By: Bhishma Kukreti, M.Sc. (Botany) (Mythology Research Student)
 Botanical name: Nicotiana tobacum
Local name- Tamakhu
  Tobacco might have come in Uttarakhand around seventeenth century  and  got spread very fast. Tobacco smoking is common in Uttarakhand.
  Apart from common uses for smoking, wild tobacco is used for checking excessive growth (Dwijeebi, Dwijib, Doadjeeb) another tongue below main tongue.
                     Tobacco Myths in Uttarakhand
      It is believed that many times, Sayyad or evil Muslim soul enter into body of  person and starts paining to the person (Pashwa).  For satisfying and getting rid of evil or good Muslim oul (called Sayyad), there are rituals performed by Tantrik-Mantrik and Jagri. In both the rituals) Tantra-Mantra and Ghadela), Tantrik  or Jagri offer tobacco cake (tobacco leave dust mixed with molasses ) with clove or burning Chilam   to the dissatisfied  or angry Muslim soul. The ritual is called Saidwali. After Sayyadwali or Saidwali (सैद्वाली, सैद्वाळी, सय्यदवाली  ). After Saidwali ritual, tobacco is burnt with clove on a cross road or place where the Pashwa was affected by Muslim soul.
 There are two folk songs Saidywali as follows –
  If a person is effected by unsatisfied Muslim soul, the Mantrik, Jhadkhandi or Jagri start performing ritual , worshiping the unsatisfied  Muslim soul and start the ritual of Saidwali . The unsatisfied soul is offered Tobacco and the Jhadkhandi reads the Mantra   
 
      बाबा आलम को सलाम
       हव्वा अम्मा को सलाम
      कलवा बाबा सैद को सलाम
      रहिमन मुकुलकिशोर पठान तख़्त को सलाम
      फूलपरी बहन को सलाम
       हे मेरे मेहरबान, मेरे पे हो जाओ मेहरबान
       सलाम भाई सलल्म , सलाम
There are Ghadela or Jagar for Saidwali (keshav Anuragi , Nad Nadnai unpublished)
मुख्य जागरी के कथन ----------------------------- सहायक जागरी की भौण
सल्लाम वाले कम                                    सल्लाम वाले कम   
त्यारा वै गौड़ गाजिना                               सल्लाम वाले कम 
म्यारा मियाँ रतनागाजी                             सल्लाम वाले कम   
तेरी वो बीबी फातिमा                                   सल्लाम वाले कम   
तेरी वो कलमा कुरआन                              सल्लाम वाले कम     
 These Mantras or Jagar work as the narration of Krishna worked for enhancing the self-esteem of Arjun that he developed self-confidence before Arjun goes for great battle . The subject feels self- assurance, self-confidence and that confidence /assurance induct the physical changes and psychological changes into body-mind of the effected one positively
 
Refrences
Dr Shiva Nand Nautiyal Garhwal ke Nrity geet , page 157-159   



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Plant Myths logy , Traditions , Garhwal, Uttarakhand ; Plant Myths , Traditions , Kumaon, Uttarakhand ;Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, Himalaya; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, north India; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, South Asia



Bhishma Kukreti

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Himalayan Pear (Melu) Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand 
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Plant Myths and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) -
By: Bhishma Kukreti, M.Sc. (Botany) (Mythology Research Scholar)

Botanical Name: Pyrus pashia
Hindi Name- Mehal, Mole
Local name: Melu
 Melu is a wild tree. People eat ripen fruits. The people use Melu leaves as fodder and use as wood too.
                   Himalayan Pear Myths
   Melu tree has religious importance in Holi festival
The Holi starts from the seventh day of shukla paksha (bright half of lunar month ) of Falgun month. Holashtak starts from this day. For the children, Holashtak is a day of celebration because for them this is the day for starting day of Hulli-mangan too. On this day’ the elder youth go to the place where Melu (wild pear) is blooming and cut the blooming stem. The pundit establishes the soul of Holika in this stem through specific mantra and plants the bloomed stem into the selected ground for burning the Holi wood outside of the village. This flowered stem becomes the symbol of Holika . On this day only, the soul of Prahlad is also established (pran-pratishthan) in a white flag. This flag is for huli-magan and at the time of burning Holi wood.
 The young boys go for holi-mangan in the evening. Huli or holi-mangan starts from the place where Holika’s soul is established. The children used to go each house of the village in groups and sing the songs (these songs are not particular but related to history of Ram or Krishna) and u dance in circle in the courtyard:
Holi de dyao , holi de dyao
Dashrath je ko chhyaya char naunoo.
  On the evening before of Holi, the people visit to place where Melu branch is planted as Holika and put wood around melu branch. Then Pundit performs rituals and people burn the wood and Melu branch as if they were burning Holika.
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Reference: Dr. Shiva Nand Nautiyal Garhwal ke Loknritya – Geet, page 234

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Plant Myths  , Traditions , Garhwal, Uttarakhand ; Plant Myths , Traditions , Kumaon, Uttarakhand ;Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, Himalaya; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, North India; Plant Myths , Traditions , Uttarakhand, South Asia



Bhishma Kukreti

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Myth and Religious Importance of Jhangora, Barnyard Millet in Uttarakhand 
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Plant Myths, Religious Importance, and Traditions in Uttarakhand (Himalaya) – 10
By: Bhishma Kukreti, M.Sc. (Botany) (Mythology Research Scholar)
Botanical name – Echinochola frumentacea
Local name – Jhangora
Hindi Name- Swaiya
Sanskrit Name-Shyamak
Economic benefits – The rice was very important food of Uttarakhand till late sixties. This millet is  food of fasting days in plains out of Uttarakhand.
                   Myths, Religious Importance and Traditions
  There is religious importance of Jhangora or barnyard millets in Uttarakhand too.
              The cooked cake of barnyard millet (with flower on top of cake) is offered to cattle on Chhoti Diwali, Diwali, Godhan and Igas (all days related to deepawali).
       In old time, people perceived the Jhangora or barnyard millet as auspicious or lucky gift to daughter in her marriage.
  The symbols and lighted earthen lamp is put over Jhangora in wood vessel in Ala and called Narsingh ka Thau (staying place for Narsingh) . None other than Jhangora/barnyard millet is kept into the wood vessel.

       
   

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Copyright@ Bhishma Kukreti, Mumbai 2017
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Plant Myths  , Religious Importance, Traditions , Garhwal, Uttarakhand ; Plant Myths , Religious Importance, Traditions , Kumaon, Uttarakhand ;Plant Myths , Religious Importance, Traditions , Uttarakhand; Plant Myths , Religious Importance, Traditions , Uttarakhand, Himalaya; Plant Myths , Religious Importance, Traditions , Uttarakhand, North India; Plant Myths , Religious Importance, Traditions , Uttarakhand, South Asia



 

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