Scientists found a wonder herb in Himalayas that may be Sanjeevani Booti, the mythical herb that gave renewed life to Ram’s brother Lakshman in the epic Ramayana.
Hoax or Fact:
Fact with some missing information.
The message shared online, especially in India, states that scientists found a wonder herb in the Himalayas that may be the mythical herb Sanjeevani Booti, which gave renewed life to Ram’s brother Lakshman in the epic Ramayana. The claim is a fact with some missing information.
Sanjeevani or Sanjivini translates to the "one that infuses life". In Hindu mythology, Sanjeevani is believed to be a magical herb having the power to cure any malady. Importantly, medicines prepared from the Sanjivini herb are believed to have the ability to revive a dead person. It is mentioned in the epic Ramayana when, Ravana's son Indrajit hurls a powerful weapon at Lakshmana, wounding him badly, close to death. Upon this, Lord Hanuman was called to fetch this magical herb Sanjeevani from the Mount Dunagiri (Mahodaya) in the Himalayas. Interestingly, reaching Mount Sumeru, when Hanuman was unable to identify the Sanjeevani herb, he lifted the entire mountain and brought it to the battlefield to help save the wounded Lakshmana.
Wonder Herb Rhodiola
In August 2014, in the deadly highs of the Himalayas, scientists said they have found a multifunctional “wonder herb” called Rhodiola that can regulate the immune system, help adapt to the mountain environment and even protect from radioactivity. Talking about the Rhodiola herb found in the cold and highland climate, India's leading scientists expressed wonder if it is the end to the quest for Sanjeevani. In fact, scientists say the Himalayan herb is modern-day Sanjeevani.
Rhodiola is locally called ‘Solo’ in Ladakh, and its qualities were largely unknown so far. Leh-based Defence Institute of High Altitude Research (DIHAR) is researching on the therapeutic values of the wonder herb, and lab of the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) has been studying it for more than a decade. Sunil Hota, investigating the medicinal properties of the Rhodiola plant at DIHAR said, "Our research reveals its potential for anti-aging, tissue regeneration, protecting neurons during lack of oxygen, and cognitive improvement".
In Other Countries
The wonder herb Rhodiola, 'thought' to be Sanjeevani, is also found in other countries like China and the US, undergoing research. It is used in traditional Chinese medicine to fight high-altitude sickness, and in Mongolia physicians prescribed it for cancer and tuberculosis. Some studies across the world suggest it also helps in fast recovery after heavy workout, memory enhancement and cardiac stress reduction.