Bhasma(Calcined powder of metals, minerals, gems etc.). Metals and minerals are invariably used in bhasmaform. Most of the metals and minerals are toxic when given in their original form. For medicinal purpose, they have to be made non-toxic and to be brought to the state in which they can be absorbed easily. For the preparation of bhasmafirst of all, these metals, minerals, etc. are purified according to the procedure prescribed in the classics. This process is known as sodhanain Ayurveda.
After sodhana, the process of marana(killing) is followed. For this purpose, purified drug is ground in a khalva(stone mortar and pestle) by adding the decoctions or juices of specified drugs. Fromout of this paste, small cakrikas (cakes) are prepared, dried in the sun and placed inside a sarava samputa(two shallow earthen plates).
The edge is sealed with mud smeared cloth in seven consecutive layers. This sarava samputais cooked in a pit filled with cow-dung cakes. This cooking is known as puta.There are different types of putanamely gaja puta, mahaputa, vara puta, etc. The process of grinding, making cakes and giving putasis repeated as many times as mentioned in the text. After that, sarava sarnputaisremoved and medicine is reduced to a fine powder form by grinding. These bhasmasare generally, yellowish, black, dark white, reddish black, gray and red in color. These are preserved in an airtight glass or earthen containers. They have no characteristic taste. These bhasmas contain their therapeutic potency indefinitely.
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