India > Dharamsala

Sorting Myrobalan

Footage by Bernard Coops and Stephan Kloos (2012)

Myrobalan (Terminalia bellirica and Terminalia chebula) is among the most important ingredients in Tibetan medicine. In Tibetan iconography the Medicine Buddha is always depicted holding  a Myrobalan fruit. The dried fruits contain pits, which if used would render the medicine coarse and difficult to digest. Since these pits cannot be removed mechanically, the Men-Tsee-Khang still dedicates a large amount of manpower to manually cleaning and processing this crucial medicinal ingredient.

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