All About Rudraksha

What is Rudraksha ?

Rudraksha, (also called rudraksha ratana, rudraksha bead, rudraksha gem,) is a very sacred object in the Hindu religion. It is hard and dark colored fruit of a tree whose botanical or scientific name is elaeocarpus ganitrus. In sanskrit Rudraksha mean eyes (tears) of Lord Shiva. ‘Rudra’ is another name of Lord Shiva and ‘Aksha’ means eyes or tears. The name rudraksha also signifies “under the protection of Lord Rudra (Shiva).” The origin of Rudraksha is linked with the story of Tripurasura Samhara. The story or the legend according to Devi Bhagwat Puran (a religious text) is this : There was a very powerful demon called Maya. He built three towns of three different metals viz. gold, silver and iron. These towns were imperishable and were called Tripur. So the demon was also known as Tripurasur.He become arrogant & started troubling god’s & sages . Brahma and Vishnu expressed their inability to tame the demon. Then the gods prayed to Lord Shiva to protect them from the demon. Lord Shiva decided to kill the demon. He entered into a deep state of meditation with half-closed eyes. Thereafter, he used a fire weapon called Aaghor to kill Tripurasur. The weapon killed the demon, but temporarily blinded Shiva too due to its dazzling brilliance.

When Lord Shiva opened his eyes, tears came out that ran down his cheek and fell on earth. Since nothing holy is ever wasted, the tears turned into seeds and grew up as Rudraksha Trees. The three eyes of Lord Shiva represent The Sun, the Moon and the Fire. From the sun-eye (the right eye) twelve types of Rudrakshas originated and from the moon-eye (left eye) sixteen types of Rudrakshas originated. From the fire-eye (in his forehead) ten types of Rudrakshas originated. Those born of the tears from the sun-eye are red blood in colour; those from the moon-eye are white Rudrakshas, and from the fire-eye are black Rudrakshas. So there are 38 (thirty eight) types of rudrakshas in all. The rudrakshas trees now grow in a very few places in the world in the Himalayan regions like Nepal. In Hindu scriptures, Rudraksha beads (also called rudraksha ratna) are considered to be the holiest object having mystical powers. They are used for spiritual and material gains and well-being for the wearer. Rudrakshas greatly help in attaining best results with chanting of mantras and meditation. They are useful in awakening Kundalini (as per the Hindu Science of Yoga). Basically, they are worn for sel-empowerment. They are also used for medicinal purposes since ancient times. Saints, Sadhus, Yogis, Priests often wear rudrakshas beads. The effect of rudraksha is felt within 40 days after wearing it.

Who can wear Rudraksha ?

Rudraksh Beads can be worn by anyone irrespective of sex, age, caste, religion etc. Each bead is identified by the number of faces or Mukhs which are vertical lines on the beads. The type of power of Rudraksha bead is decided by the number of mukhs or faces it has. In ancient epics like Shiva Puran, Padma Puran, and Skand Puran, rudraksha upto 14 mukhis are mentioned. There is no reference to those beyond 14 mukhis which is possilbly due to extremely rare occurrence of such beads. Each type of Rudraksha bead is associated with a ruling planet, ruling god and mantra. One can choose a specific rudraksha bead associated with ruling planet for which astrological remedy is sought. One can wear Rudraksh in a pendant in gold or silver or thread.

Benefits of Rudraksha

The benefits and uses of wearing Rudraksha beads and rosaries (malas) are: Spiritual Benefits produce detachment and feelings of renunciation help in getting rid of all sins help to attain perfect spiritual knowledge Protect against accidents and bad happenings reduce evil or negative influence of planets and black magic Medicinal (healing) Benefits Regulate Blood pressure help to control stress reduce anxiety and depression increase concentration, fertility Relief in brain disorders and psychological maladies Material Benefits help in acquring wealth and prosperity remove obstacles, success in career

Which Rudraksha to wear ?

Rudrakshas are known to remove bad effects of the planets. Gems are also used for the same purpose. Rudrakshas and gems can be worn together for maximum benefits. The following table indicates according to one’s birth constellation (birth nakshatra based on moon’s position in birth chart) which rudraksha and gem combination is good. Birth Nakshatra // Planet Gemstone // Rudraksha Type // To Wear 1. Ashvini : Ketu // Cat’s Eye // 9 Mukhi 2. Bharni : venus // Diamond // 6 Mukhi 3. Krittika : Sun // Ruby // (1 / 11 / 12) Mukhi 4. Rohini : Moon // Pearl // 2 Mukhi 5. Mrigashira : Mars // Coral // 3 Mukhi 6. Ardra : Rahu // Hessonite (Gomed ) // 8 Mukhi 7. Punarvasu : Jupiter // Yellow Sapphire ( Pukhraj ) // 5 Mukhi 8. Pushya : Saturn // Blue Sapphire (Nilam ) // 7 Mukhi 9. Ashlesha : Mercury // Emerald ( panna) // 4 Mukhi 10. Magha :Ketu // Cat’s Eye // 9 Mukhi 11. Purvaphalguni : Venus // Diamond // 6 Mukhi 12. Uttaraphalguni : Sun // Ruby // (1/11/12) Mukhi 13. Hasta : Moon // Pearl // 2 Mukhi 14. Chitra : Mars // Coral // 3 Mukhi 15. Swati : Rahu // Hessonite (Gomed) // 8 Mukhi 16. Vishakha : Jupiter // Yellow Sapphire // 5 Mukhi 17. Anuradha : Saturn // Blue Sapphire // 7 Mukhi 18. Jyestha : Mercury // Emerald // 4 Mukhi 19. Mula : Ketu // Cat’s Eye // 9 Mukhi 20. Purvashadha : Venus// Diamond // 6 Mukhi 21. Uttarashadha : Sun // Ruby // (1/11/12 )Mukhi 22. Shravana : Moon // Pearl // 2 Mukhi 23. Dhanishtha : Mars // Coral // 3 Mukhi 24. Shatabhisha : Rahu // Hessonite ( Gomed) // 8 Mukhi 25. Purvabhadrapada : Jupiter // Yellow Sapphire // 5 Mukhi 26. Uttarabhadrapada : Saturn // Blue Sapphire // 7 mukhi 27. Revati : Mercury // Emerald // 4 Mukhi

Varieties / Types of Rudrakshas and their Benefits, their ruling planets and representing gods and goddesses

Rudraksha beads (also called rudraksha ratnas) are categorised and named after their mukhs or faces. Rudraksha as already said in the beginning is the fruit of Rudraksha tree. It generally contains 5 compartments and each compartment has a single seed in it. The joining wall between two compartments is represented by a groove or line on the surface of the fruit. It is called Face or mouth (Mukhi). The number of faces decides the type of rudraksha. 1 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling Planet Sun – Goddess Lakshmi (Wealth) One Mukhi Rudraksha represents the ultimate reality, and Lord Shiva. Its ruling planet is the sun and it is worn or kept to lessen the bad effects of the sun. It increases concentration for work and meditation and will power of the wearer. It prevents diseases of the head. It also gives happiness and prosperity. 2 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling planet Moon – Arthanareshwar (shiva and parvati rupam) Two Mukhi Rudraksha is useful to the wearer for marital bliss, happiness, peace and harmony. It removes obstacles in marriage and in having children. Good for social and personal relationships. It increases fertility, fulfills material desires. Removes ill effects of moon. 3 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling planet Mars – Ma Saraswati Three Mukhi rudraksha increases memory, confidence, creative intelligence and concentration. It is good for those suffering from depression, infereriority complex. Helpful in brain diseases. Gives good results of mars. 4 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling planet Mercury – Lord Brahma : Lord of Creation Four Mukhi Rudraksha represents Brahma, the four headed God who is said to be the creator of the universe. This type of Rudraksha increases intelligence, logic, mental power and wisdom. It is good for meditation. Four Mukhi is suitable for intellectuals, artists, scientists, orators, lecturers, writers, students, journalist, interpreters, teachers etc. to improve knowledge, learning and concentration. It imparts positive thinking, new ideas and analytical ability. It provides good benefits of mercury. 5 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling planet Jupiter – lord Rudra : Lord of Destroyer Of Evil Power Five Mukhi Rudraksha is commonly available. Nearly 90% of beads of a rudraksha tree are five mukhi. It imparts health, mental peace and happiness. It is said to control and balance five elements i.e. Agni, Vayu, Akash, Jal and Prithvi of the wearer. It is good for success and positive thinking. It gives the benefits of the planet jupiter. It is highly beneficial for people with blood and heart diseases, blood pressure, stress and gastric problems. 6 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling planet Venus – Lord Kartikeya Six Mukhi Rudraksha is said to represent Kartikeya who was the son of Lord Shiva. It is good for matters related to love and attraction to the opposite sex. It gives comforts, harmony, charm and poise. It is useful for cultivating taste for arts, creativity, literature, music etc. It is good for emotional and sensitive persons. It is also good in the prevention of diseases of throat, eyes, nose, sexual organs, kidneys and bladder. 7 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling planet Saturn – Lord Saptarishi (Seven Great Siddha Rishis) Seven Mukhi Rudraksha is good for health and wealth. Its other benefits are success, pleasure, peace and happiness. It is good for business and career. It is said to remove the ill effects of saturn. It gives sense of justice, authority, wisdom and honour to the wearer. Good for preventing cold, cough, rheumatism, TB, bronchitis. 8 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling planet Rahu (Dragon’s Head) – Lord Ganesh Eight Mukhi Rudraksha removes obstacles. It increases will power and wins over enemies. It is for business and career. It is good for insomnia and mental problems. It cures arrogance, extravagance and diseases of stomach. It brings good luck. It reduces the ill effects of Rahu. 9 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Ruling planet Ketu (Dragon’s Tail) – Ma Durga : Lord of Power Nine Mukhi Rudraksha reduces the ill effects of Ketu. It gives self confidence, strength, fearlessness, and health to the wearer. It is good for removing sins, irrelgion, injustice, cruelty, laziness and bad habits. It helps in acquiring spiritual knowledge and salvation. 10 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Lord Vishnu Ten Mukhi Rudraksha is good for removing obstacles and past sins (karmic actions). It removes nervousness, indecision, shyness and anger. It is helpful for spiritual awakening and positive thoughts. Almost anybody can wear it. It gives peace of mind and protects from enemies, black or evil eye. It removes illusions. 11 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Eleven Roopam of Lord Shiva (Ekads Rudra) Eleven Mukhi Rudraksha is used for almost all purposes. It gives success in general, conforts, peace of mind, prosperity, health, fulfilment of desires and spiritual success. It brings stability and confidence. Good in chronic diseases. 12 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Sulpani Roopam (God of Sun) Twelve Mukhi Rudraksha gives energy and vitality to the wearer. It gives benefits of health, authority, influence, respect, brilliance, success in politics, business, administration and intellectual pursuits. Twelve Mukhi is suited for politicians, businessmen, administrators etc. It is good in diseases of bones. 13 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Indra Dev (Vishwadeva) : Lord of Enjoyment Thirteen Mukhi Rudraksha is useful for enhancing leadership qualities, communication and marketing skills. It attracts faster results for one’s actions, gives opportunities and physical strength. It is helpful in overcoming difficulties with ease and prevents breaking of relationships. 14 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Lord Shiva Roopam Fourteen Mukhi Rudraksha is powerful in arousing the psychic aspects of a person. It increases visionary qualities. It protects a person from ill effects of saturn especially sade-sati (7.5 years) and dhaya (2.5 years) effects. It brings gains in business and finance. It is good for businessmen and adventure seeking persons. It is helpful in reviving loss making business and prevents sudden diseases and bad situations. 15 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Lord Pashupatinath : Lord of Liberation (Moksha Or Mukti) Fifteen Mukhi Rudraksha produces intuition power and increases mental power. It helps in preserving the energy level of a person. It is good for those seeking promotion and economic progress. It reduces the ill effects of one’s past sins committed advertently or inadvertently. 16 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Hari-Shankar Roopam Sixteen Mukhi Rudraksha is used for various purposes. It is helpful in matters of love, affection and relationships. It protects one from theft, fire and robbery. It is equally good in legal matters and to win over enemies. It bestows peace of mind and prosperity. 17 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Lord VIshwakarma / Goddess Katyani Seventeen Mukhi Rudraksha is used for getting spiritual benefits. It arouses and increases spiritual consciouness, concentration in meditation. Other benefits include unexpected monetary and material gains. It also gives strength, and peace of mind. It is helpful in materializing success. 18 Mukhi (face) Rudraksha – Sita-Rama Roopam Eighteen Mukhi Rudraksha is said to remove fear and ill effects of black magic and evil eye. It is helpful in regaining health and mental strength. It is useful for both spiritual and worldly gains. Gauripath or Trijuti Rudraksha – Shiva and Parvati Roopam It is special but natural rudraksha which is formed when three rudraksha join together. It is said to reperesent the Hindu Trinity viz. Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh (Shiva). The wearer of this rudraksha gets everything like health, wealth, power and knowledge. Gaurishankar Rudraksha It said to remove “nav graha dosh” which is the bad effects of all the 9 planets as per Hindu Astrology. It removes marital discord and family problems.

How to Wear (method) and Maintain Rudraksha Beads – Important Tips ?

Please keep the following tips to wear and maintain the sanctity of rudrakshas beads : 1. Wear Rudraksha Bead(s) after energizing, purifying & charging it with Mantra and on Monday or Thursday. Chant the mantra ” Om Namaha Shivaya ” 108 times and concentrate on the purpose for which you are going to wear it. 2. Do not wear Rudraksha while going to funerals, cremation grounds, visiting a new-born baby etc. 3. Do not wear the Rudraksha while having sex. 4. Women should not wear the Rudraksha during their menstrual cycle. 5. Non-vegetarian food, eggs and alcohol are strictly prohibited. 6. Do not share or exchange or transfer your Rudraksha with any one else. 7. Always wear Rudraksha or Rudraksha mala (rosary) around the neck so that the beads touch the heart area. 8. Wear Rudraksha in black, yellow or white colored thread. It can be worn in silver, gold, copper metals. 9. Never show your Rudrakshas once you have worn it. 10. Once you start wearing rudraksha, wear it continuously throughout your life. 11. Rudraksha can also be kept in prayer / Puja room and worshipped for benefit. 12. Oil your rudraksha every month with mustard oil or sandalwood oil or olive oil and treat it with incense. This is important if you are not going to use the bead for sometime, or you want to store it for a while. 13. Wash your rudraksha beads every month in boiled hot water. Let is dry for few hours and then oil it and wear it. 14. Rudraksha should not be worn when you are bathing. This will prevent the rudraksha from becoming wet. 15. Rudrakshas are neither gems nor ornaments or simple beads. They are tears of Lord Shiva. So, wearing Rudrakshas without accepting Shiva (Rudra) may not yield good results. 16. Do not interchange your rudraksh mala with anyone else.

Size of Rudraksha and other Features

1. The size of the rudraksha matters a lot. Big Rudraksha is superior to small Rudraksha. A Rudraksha bead which has a natural central hole is of the best quality. But, they are only 0.02%. Holes are created in most of rudrakshas. a. Big sized Rudraksha: It is has a radius of approx. 2 cm. and is of the size of an Amla fruit. It gives superior results. b. Medium sized Rudraksha: It has a radius between 1 to 2 cm. It gives medium results. c. Small sized Rudraksha: It has a radius of 1 cm or below. It is of the size of a pea. It is suitable for worldly or material gains. Rudrakshas with a radius of 4 cm. or above are very rare. They are just not available. 2. Strong Rudraksha is superior to weak Rudraksha. Brittle Rudraksha is from unripe fruits and is not good. Beads from Rudraksha fruits which dry up while still on the tree itself are the best. 3. Rudraksha should be round. It should have clear grooves and lines. Badly shaped or deformed rudraksha, insect eaten, spoiled by fungus should never be used. It gives bad results.

Identification of Rudraksha

Unfortunately, there is no foolproof or definitive method to distinguish or identify a true rudraksha from a fake one. It is best to buy a Rudraksha from a trusted supplier. However the following methods can be tried: Water Test 1. Boil the rudraksh in water for some hours at a stretch. If it is real, then there would not be any effect on the rudraksh bead, otherwise if it is fake or artificial or two rudrakshs are joined together artificially(in case of Gauri shanker bead), a clear discoloration will take place. 2. Place the rudraksha in a glass of water. If it floats it is false and is therefore rejected. However, this test is not very reliable because fake Rudraksha bead made of wood but impregnated with some metal like lead etc. will also sink in water. Cut Test Cut the Rudraksha bead. You will find the same number of compartments as the number of lines if it is real. The test is very reliable but the problem is that the bead is destroyed. Copper Coin Test It is a generally held that a Rudraksha bead moves or rotates a little when placed between two copper coins. This is possibly happens due to magnetic properties of the Rudraksha bead. This test requires a considerable skill and expertise to discern.

Shape and Structure

A good Rudraksha bead will not be broken at ends. A good Rudraksha bead should have well defined natural corns & contours.

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