Ten herbs to cure Puri lords' illness

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By NAMITA PANDA
  • Published 15.06.12
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Bhubaneswar, June 14: Devotees could not get a darshan of deities of Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra for nine days now as their physicians are treating them at an undisclosed place for some “illness”.

On Thursday, the deities were given a special medicine, Dasamula modaka, that the servitors believe will help them “recover” soon.

The deities’ physicians, known as baidyas, follow their hereditary duty of preparing medicines during this annual period of their illness. The divine siblings are given doses of different medicines and massage of special oils. The prescriptions change everyday and different medicines are prepared by different families assigned with the duty for generations.

The Dasamula modaka, an ayurvedic medicine, prepared on the 10th day from Debasnana Purnima, is made by 83-year-old baidya Binayak Mishra, popularly known as Bina Bhaina, in Puri.

An ayurvedic doctor, Mishra has been performing the service of preparing the Dasamula modaka for the deities since 1980.

“This particular medicine has been prepared for the deities by our family for many generations. As a kid, I used to assist my grandfather and father in preparing this medicine. It is from them that I learnt the technique. Once taken, it helps the deities recover from their illness completely, though some weakness still continues for some more days,” said Mishra.

Prepared from the roots of 10 different medicinal herbs, barks and fruits, the Dasamula modaka is offered to the deities twice a day.

“This medicine is given only for one day. But, it is so powerful that it cures the deities with only a day’s doses. It is prescribed to be offered to the deities once in the day and once before sleep at night. We send seven earthen pots full of the medicine for the lords after making it into balls,” he said.

“I treat people too and I feel that serving people is also like serving God. Yet, being able to treat and cure the illness of the lords is a special feeling. If taken with belief, the Dasamula modaka can cure many ailments of people,” he said.

After recuperating from the illness next morning, the deities will be given a scrub and massage, known as Khali lagi, to help them recover from weakness.