Rudraksha has a special place in Indian Culture as it is well known for its divine properties. There are many references about Rudraksha in ancient Indian texts which deals with its holistic and life changing powers. It is no secret that, whatever is written in Vedic texts, have been proven to be true . What one can deduce is somewhere in these past five to ten thousand years, human race lost the valuable knowledge, our ancestors have possessed. Here we are making an effort to rediscover, those pearls of wisdom about Rudraksha, our ancestors had knowledge about.
Legend behind Rudraksha
“Rudraksha” the Sanskrit word means the “eyes of Shiva” . The legend of the birth of Rudraksha tree is from Rudrajabalopanishad ( Rudra Jabalopanishad is a minor Upanishad included in the Sama-Veda). In this Upanishad Lord Kalagnirudra expounds the nature, variety and significance of Rudraksha ). As per the book, when Rudra (Shiva) opened his eyes after thousands of years of meditation, he saw the sufferings of earthlings and tears dropped from his eyes out of compassion. These tears fell on earth giving birth to Rudraksha tree.
For thousands of years Rudraksha beads have been worn by mankind for good health, religious attainment through Japa ( Prayers) and Shakti (power) and for fearless life.
About the Rudraksha Tree
Rudraksha trees are found in India, Nepal, Indonesia and Malaysia. Rudraksha is the seed of the Rudraksha tree. It takes around 18 years to grow to its full size. It is mentioned in the Shiva Purana that one should plant a rudraksha tree in the northern direction as Rudra lives in the North or in the Himalayas.
Rudraksha is a large evergreen broad-leaved tree which grow to a height of about 50-200 feet. The stem of Rudraksha tree is cylindrical with a dirty white and coarse textured bark. Naturally top of the leafy of a Rudraksha tree obtains a pyramidal shape and is shining green on the upper side with an uninteresting fibrous dorsal side. Rudraksha is a fruit, which is covered with pulp and a thin outer skin. The skin is green in colour like banana skin. But when plucked from the tree and allowed to remain, as it is, the colours of the skin become blackish blue. The diameter of the seed is up to 1 inch (2.54 cm) and is nearly round in shape, and belongs to Eliocorpus Genetic type of herb. More than 95 percentage of Rudrakshas available are 5 Mukhi’s ( Panch Mukhi)
Making of Rudraksha
The seed of the Rudraksha tree are sun cured and the outer skin removed, before boiling the seed in water mixed with sodium bicarbonate to remove the pulp around the seed. After cleaning the seed they are further cured by soaking in almond oil mixed with musk. Finally the beads are roasted in the smoke of a sacred fire in which different sacred woods have been consumed. Afterwards ghee is used to harden the beads and the black ash from the fire may be rubbed into the seeds.
The positive effects of wearing Rudraksha
It is scientifically proven that Rudrakshas have Electrical and Magnetic properties, which will affect our nervous system in a positive way. Ancient Hindu literature confers anti-ageing properties and healing powers to Rudraksha. Because of this reason, in India Kings, Sages and affluent persons used to wear Rudraksha from time immemorial. According to the Ayurvedic medical system, wearing Rudraksha can have a positive effect on the heart and nerves, and relieve you from stress, anxiety, depression, palpitations and lack of concentration. It is also known for its anti-ageing effect, and electromagnetic and inductive properties. People with high blood pressure have been found to have benefited from the use of Rudraksha seeds.
The number of rudraksha beads worn is variable. According to the scriptures, the benefits attained by wearing 1100 beads cannot be described in thousands of years. ‘Let those who have faith wear 3 beads in the top knot, 6 in each ear, 12 round each wrist, 36 over the crown of the head, 32 or 27 tightly around the neck, and 108 as a garland. They will surely attain Rudrahood’, says the Rudrojabalopanishad.
Rules for wearing Rudraksha
According to ‘Yoga Sara’, spiritual attributes and powers corresponding to the gods abide in the beads according to the number of faces or mukhis. This determines the suitable mantras to be recited upon the mala and the particular value of the mala for the wearer.
Rudrakshas must be worn only after purifying physically and mentally after chanting the Mantras. There are different Manthras depending upon which Mukhi you are wearing. It should be worn only on auspicious days , Monday or Thursday.
After wearing, Rudraksha Manthra and the beeja Manthra to be chanted daily 9 times in the morning while wearing. Rudraksha should be removed when you go to sleep and should be kept at a place of worship in your house.
One has to take bath before wearing the Rudraksha in the morning. The wearer of the Rudraksha should not eat Non vegetarian food or consume Alcohol. There are other restrictions too while wearing Rudraksha for religious purposes. They are as follows
One should not wear Rudraksh while attending funerals or while going to cremation grounds.
One should not wear Rudraksha while visiting a new born baby.
One should not wear Rudraksha during sex or during their menstrual cycle.
One has to treat Rudraksha with respect.
Precautions to take for buying Rudraksha
There should not be any cracks near the central hole. Ensure that the Mukhi is well defined and have well defined and natural corns and contours.
A real Rudraksha bead will never float on water.
Even if you boil a real Rudraksha in water for 6 hours, there would be no effect on the bead
Types of Rudraksha
Rudraksha beads are classified on the basis of the number of Faces (‘mukhis’ )– the clefts and furrows – they have on the surface. Each bead has a different effect on you, depending on the number of mukhis it has. These are vital from the astrological point of view, since it is believed that Rudrakshas of different mukhis have direct relationship with different planets. The scriptures speak of 1 to 38 mukhis, but Rudrakshas of 1 to 14 mukhis are commonly found.
Single Faced Rudraksha
One Mukhi Rudraksha is rare and is considered as divine as Lord Shiva itself. It is rare and precious and carries the properties of all other rudrakshas. Whoever wears it will be absolved of sin, and if self-control is practised, he becomes one with the absolute consciousness. It bestows both pleasure (kama) and liberation (moksha). It lifts a person to a higher level of consciousness and gives the mind the ability to concentrate . The ruling planet for One Mukhi rudraksha is Sun. So in Astrology it is used to remove the malefic effects of Sun. The THE MANTRA FOR WEARING ONE FACED Rudraksh (Rudraksha)
The Beeja Manthra for single Faced Rudraksha is “Ohm hring namah”
Two Faced Rudraksha
Two Mukhi Rudraksha is considered to be the basis of this universe. It makes possible the attainment of all desires and wishes. It bestows concentration and one-pointedness of mind, confers tantric powers, and brings peace in conjugal life, and facilitates the awakening of kundalini shakti in serious sadhaks. It represents both Sun and Moon. The wearer will get benefits equal to doing Agni Puja. Two mukhi will help get a better mental Control. The Beeja Manthra Two Mukhi Rudraksha is “Ohm namah”
Three Faced Rudraksha
This Rudraksha represents Thrimurthi’s , Brahma, Vishnu, Maheswara. This will control the destructive forces in the wearer and enhances creativity. In astrology wearing of Three Mukhi rudraksha is advised to remove the malefic effects of Mars. It is believed that wearing this rudraksha will reduces miseries and sufferings and enhances happiness and comfort in one’s life. It aids in boosting the confidence of the wearer, thus enabling him to cope with tough situations
The Beeja Manthra for three faced rudraksha is “Om kling namah”
Four Faced Rudraksha
Four mukhi symbolizes the four Vedas . In Astrology it is said to remove malefic effects of Mercury. It is believed that the wearer will get success in all works and all directions. It helps a great deal in developing the power of speech. It is very beneficial for treating the problem of stammering
The Beeja Manthra for four mukhi rudraksha is “Ohm hring namah”
Five Faced Rudraksha
This is the most common Rudraka available. It is sacred to Shiva as Kaala-asi (kalagni), destroyer of Yama, god of death. It symbolises Lord Shiva in his five aspects or panchabrahma (Sadyajata, Vamadeva, Aghora, Tatpurusha and Ishana); and is said to ward off the five heinous actions (panchamahapataka). According to Shiva Purana, ‘It is lordly. It bestows all sorts of salvation and achievement of all desired objects’! In astrology Five Mukhi will reduces the malefic effects of Jupiter
The Beeja Mantra for Five mukhi rudraksha is “Om hring namah”
Six Faced Rudraksha
Six Mukhi This Rudraksha is related to Six Darshan. The Goddess Laxmi resides in Six Face Rudraksha therefore provides wealth and prosperity. The person who wears this Rudraksha after proper Sidhhi (method of purification & charging with Mantra) will have Darshan of six Deva in his Body. This Rudraksha give the knowledge of Soul to the wearer.
The person who wear this Rudraksha become calm and quite like the Moon. It keeps the anger, jealousy, excitation under control in the body of the wearer. It is known to bring wealth, power, name and fame. It helps the wearer in achieving eternal bliss. It provides success in all assignments. Ruling planet is Venus
The Beeja Manthra for six mukhi rudraksha is “Ohm hring hrang namah”,
Seven Faced Rudraksha
Seven Mukhi Rudraksha represents the seven seas. The wearer can reduce the malefic effects of Sani. It helps a person achieve what he desires. It enables a person to prosper academically .The following mantra should be recited 550 times before wearing it.
The Beeja Mantra for seven faced rudraksha is “Ohm hrung namah”
Eight Faced Rudraksha
The ruling planet for this Rudraksha is Rahu so it is used to reduce the malefic effects of Rahu. The wearer will be free from all sorrows and will get happiness. It brings wealth and luxury. It helps to ward off evil spirits and get rid of various forms of diseases. The Beeja manthra for eight mukhi rudraksha is “Ohm hrang namah”
Nine Faced Rudraksha
The Nine Faced Rudraksha bead is ruled by Ketu and is worn to control it’s malefic effects like mental fatigue, poverty, helplessness, inactivity of mind and body. This bead also works as a magical remedy for treating unknown diseases and snake bite. The 9 mukhi rudraksha bead is also the symbol of Goddess Durga and Yamraj (God of death) and helps to increase self-confidence and overcome fear and depression. This Rudraksha bead is said to remove the effects of Kaal Sarp Yoga.The 9 Mukhi Rudraksha controls the nine senses of the body and removes all sins and provides all comforts and happiness. Nine mukhi beads is used as cure for diseases of lung, fever, eye pain, bowel pain, skin disease, body pain etc. According to Numerologists, people governed by Number 7 are suggested to wear this Rudraksha bead.
The Beeja Manthra for nine mukhi is “Om hring hrung namah”
Ten Faced Rudraksha Bead
The Ten faced Rudraksha bead does not have a ruling planet. This bead has a strong positive effect on adverse planetary effects, evil power, misfortunes, miseries and worldly sufferings. The ruling lord of this bead is Lord Mahavishnu, the preserver of the Universe. The 10 mukhi beads are used for curing diseases like hormonal imbalance in the body, mental instability, whooping cough, blood and skin related problems etc. These beads should be worn by those who are short tempered and those affected by evil eye or black magic. The ten mukhi bead gives good nature, wealth and prosperity to the wearer. This bead is also very effective against fear from snakes, litigations and imprisonment. These beads are used for meditation purpose and improve the concentration power of the wearer.
The Beeja mantra for ten faced rudraksha is “Om hring namah”
Below is a translation of the description about Rudraksha from Rudrajabalopanishad
How devotees should wear Rudraksha
Hail Ohm! I praise the Effulgent State of Absolute Peace, belonging to Sri Maharudra, which is to be known through the Rudraksha Jabala Upanishad.
Bhusunda questioned Lord Kalagnirudra: What is the beginning of Rudraksha beads? What is the benefit of wearing them on the body?
Lord Kalagnirudra answered him thus: I closed my eyes for the sake of destroying the Tripura Asuras. From my eyes thus closed, drops of water fell on the earth. These drops of tears turned into Rudrakshas.
By the mere utterance of the name of ‘Rudraksha’, one acquires the benefit of giving ten cows in charity. By seeing and touching it, one attains double that benefit. I am unable to praise it any more.
I closed my eyes one thousand celestial years. Then from my eyelids, drops of water dropped down and attained the state of immobility for blessing the devoted persons.
This Rudraksha destroys the devotees’ sins that are committed both night and day, by wearing it.
By mere vision of the Rudraksha, the benefit will be say, a lac. But by wearing them, it will be a crore. Why, it will be equal to hundred crores.
But it will be a thousand lacs of crores and hundred lacs of crores times powerful when one does Japa with Rudraksha and wears it at all times.
Among Rudrakshas, one as big as Amalaka (myrobalan), is considered to be the best. One as big as the Badari fruit (Indian berry) is considered to be of the middle sort. But that as big as Chana (Bengal gram) is considered to be the worst of all. This is my idea about the size of Rudraksha beads.
The four kinds of people, Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas and Sudras are born as merely a worthless burden on the earth. The real Brahmin is the white Rudraksha. The red is a Kshatriya. The yellow is a Vaisya. And the black is a Sudra.
Therefore, a Brahmin should wear white Rudrakshas, a Kshatriya the red, a Vaisya the yellow and a Sudra the black.
One should use those Rudraksha-beads which are nice, handsome, strong, big, auspicious and thorny. *One should avoid those eaten by worms, broken, without thorns, and having sores.
The self-holed Rudraksha is of the best variety. But that which is holed by man’s attempt, is considered to be worse. Those best Rudrakshas should be strung in white thread. A worshipper of Siva should wear Rudraksha all over the body. He should wear one bead on the crest, three hundred round the head, thirty-six round the neck, sixteen round each arm, twelve round the chest and five hundred round the waist. He should wear a Yajnopavita consisting of one hundred and eight beads of Rudrakshas. He should wear two, three, five or seven Malas of Rudraksha round the neck.
A Siva-Bhakta should wear Rudrakshas round his crown, ear-ring, chain, round the ear, armlet, at all times, and specially round the stomach, irrespective of the fact whether he is sleeping, drinking, etc.
If the devotee wears three hundred beads, it is the worst, if he wears five hundred it will be medium, but one thousand will be the best of all.
The devotee, when wearing Rudrakshas on the head, should repeat his Ishta Mantra, and when wearing them round the neck, should repeat the Tat-Purusha Mantra and when wearing round the throat, should repeat the Aghora Mantra. The same Mantra (Aghora) should be recited when wearing round the chest also.
He should wear them round the arms with the Aghora Bija Mantra.
Then again Bhusunda asked Lord Kalagnirudra: What are the different forms and effects of Rudraksha beads? Please tell me about the secret of these blessed ones including their various faces, which is the means of getting rid of all evil.
Lord Kalagnirudra said: The bead with one face is of the form of the Supreme Truth. A disciplined one (controlling his senses) mingles himself with the one Eternal Truth, after wearing these Rudrakshas. The bead with two faces is of the form of Ardhanarisvara and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of Ardhanarisvara (Siva united with Sakti). The bead with three faces is of the form of the three fires and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of Agni. The bead with four faces is of the form of the four-faced Brahma and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of Brahma. The bead with five faces is of the form of Panchabrahman (the five-faced Siva) and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of Panchabrahman and drives away the sin of homicide. The bead with six faces is of the form of the six-faced Kartikeya or Ganesha and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of wealth and health, clear intellect and wisdom, and purification. The bead with seven faces is of the form of the seven Matras (Mother Goddesses) and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of wealth and health, right perception, and purity of mind. The bead with eight faces is of the form of the eight-fold Nature (five elements, mind, ego, and matter) or the eight Vasus and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of these Devatas and becomes truthful. The bead with nine faces is of the form of the Nava-Saktis and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of the nine Powers.
The bead with ten faces is of the form of the ten Yamas means used by Yogins and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of achieving peace of the mind. The bead with eleven faces is of the form of the eleven Rudras and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of increase well-being and wealth. The bead with twelve faces is of the form of Mahavishnu or the twelve Adityas and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of Moksha. The bead with thirteen faces is of the form of the Kama (Cupid or the god of Love) and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of Cupid in gratifying all desires. The bead with fourteen faces is of the form of Rudra being generated out of his eyes and the devotee wearing it attains the grace of destruction of all diseases.
One who wears Rudrakshas, should not use intoxicants, meat, garlic, onions, carrots and all such prohibited things. By wearing Rudrakshas during eclipses, Vishusankranti (the end of Mina and beginning of Mesha Masa), new moon, full moon and other such auspicious days, one is freed of all sins.
Rudraksha – what it signifies
The base of the Rudraksha bead is Brahma, its navel is Vishnu, its face is Rudra and its hole consists of all gods.
One day Sanatkumara asked Kalagnirudra: “O Lord! Tell me the rules for wearing Rudrakshas”. At that time Nidagha, Jadabharata, Dattatreya, Katyayana, Bharadvaja, Kapila, Vasishtha, Pippalada, etc., came to Kalagnirudra. Then Lord Kalagnirudra asked them why they all had come in a group. They all answered that they came to hear the method of wearing Rudrakshas.
Kalagnirudra said: Those that are born out of Rudra’s Akshis (eyes) are called Rudrakshas. When these beads are even once touched by hand, one attains the glory of giving in charity two thousand cows at a time. When they are worn in ears, he gets the effect of giving out eleven thousand cows in charity. He also attains the state of the eleven Rudras. When the beads are worn on the head, one has the benefit of giving a crore of cows in charity. Of all these places, I am unable to tell you the benefit when worn in the ears.
Whoever studies this Rudraksha Jabala Upanishad, be he a boy or a youth, becomes great. He becomes the Guru of all and the teacher of all Mantras. Havan and Archana should be done with these Mantras (of the Upanishad).
That Brahmin who recites this Upanishad in the evening, destroys the sins committed during day time; who recites at noon, destroys the sins of six births; who recites in the morning and evening, destroys the sins of many births. He attains the same benefit of doing six thousand lacs of Gayatri Japa.
He becomes purified from all sins of killing a Brahmin, drinking toddy, stealing gold, approaching Guru’s wife, having intercourse with her, speaking with corrupted person, etc.
He gets the benefits of all pilgrimages and river-baths. He attains Siva-sayujya. He does not come back (to rebirth).