Roses—beautiful, fragrant, heart-warming—you likely feel uplifted merely in their presence. The rose has been prized throughout the ages for its ability to calm the emotions, soothe stress, cool frustration, and cultivate love. As such, Ayurveda utilizes the rose for its healing effects on the heart, mind, skin, and the wellbeing of the entire body.
In this article, you’ll learn traditional Ayurvedic uses of the rose, as well as our favorite rose rituals to incorporate into your daily routine!
The Rose’s Roots in Ayurveda
As old as civilization itself, the rose was cultivated in India some 5,000 years ago. It was first appreciated for its sweet taste and curative powers, and later for its beauty and fragrance. It turns out there is a scientific basis for this passion for roses. The essence of rose contains over 3,000 biochemicals, making it the most complex of aromatic oils.
According to the Ayurvedic texts, it is not a coincidence that the rose is associated with romance, because it balances Sadhaka Pitta—the subdosha of Pitta that governs the emotions and their effect on the heart. Sadhaka Pitta can go out of balance more easily in summer, when the hot, humid weather increases all aspects of Pitta dosha, the mind-body operator that governs heat, digestion, and metabolism in the body. Rose cools Pitta dosha, soothing the emotions. It also balances the coordination between mind and emotions. Moreover, it enhances the coordination between Sadhaka Pitta and Prana Vata (the subdosha of Vata that governs the brain, head, chest, respiration, sensory perception, and the mind).
Even though there are hundreds of varieties of wild and cultivated roses, only one rose is used in Ayurveda: the Shatapattri (“thousand petals”) rose. The petals of this rose are used for their cooling and nourishing properties, making a powerful tonic for the heart. Interestingly, the Latin name for this rose, Rosa Centifolia, also means thousand petals.
The rose has a unique quality in that it is cooling, yet it enhances agni, the digestive fire. This makes it balancing for all three doshas.
Modern researchers are similarly fascinated by the rose and are investigating the effect of the rose in balancing hormones and creating overall well-being. Essential rose oils used in aromatherapy are also being investigated for their antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-hemorrhagic properties.
Traditional Uses of the Rose
In Maharishi Ayurveda, the rose is used in many rasayanas—the herbal formulas that promote overall health and longevity.
Radiant Rose Skincare
The rose has long been used to promote beauty; it’s an important ingredient in many luxurious treatments. Local applications (such as in creams and poultices) cool, moisturize, and tone the skin. Cold poultices with rose and sandalwood paste are sometimes prescribed to cool excess heat. Massaging the body with rose and sandalwood enhances glow and complexion.
The rose enlivens inner beauty by helping the skin to radiate from the inside out. It enhances all seven dhatus (body tissues.) When used over time, the essence of rose pacifies the heat in the blood, and thus keeps imbalances in the skin from erupting.
Organic Rose Petal Spread is our traditional rose confection prepared with dozens of roses. It can be added to milk or added to sweet lassi to make a delicious summertime drink. It's a potent tonic for balancing the emotions and intensifying happiness and bliss. Enjoy the following recipes prepared with Organic Rose Petal Spread:
Make the rose part of your daily routine to balance your heart and mind.
- Create a sweet ambiance in your home with Blissful Heart Aroma Oil, a therapeutic aroma that contains rose essence and is aimed to uplift the heart.
- Suffering from the winter blues? Reach for the nearest rose. Treat yourself to a morning of deeply rejuvenating, rose aroma-spa therapy at home. Start by adding a few drops of pure rose oil to your massage oil for a luxurious, heart-warming oil massage. Draw a warm bath and add six drops of rose absolute essential oil. Use our moisturizing and soothing Rose Herbal Soap to complete your rose-inspired spa therapy, and you'll feel uplifted and content.
- Are you waking up in the early morning unable to fall back asleep? According to Maharishi Ayurveda, this type of sleep problem is due to an imbalance in Pitta dosha, and often Sadhaka Pitta, which governs the emotions, is involved. To remedy this situation, start going to bed at 9:30pm, before the Pitta time of night begins. Create a sweet, sleep-inducing influence while you sleep with Cooling Pitta Aroma Oil, which contains roses. Soothe your heart and sleep deep by drinking a cup of warm milk sweetened with a teaspoon of Organic Rose Petal Spread. Organic Pitta Tea also contains roses, and it helps balance Sadhaka Pitta, cool the body, soothe the mind, and settle the emotions. You'll feel cooled, soothed, and uplifted.
- Cool your skin and uplift your emotions with our pure Organic Rose Water. It pacifies Ranjaka Pitta (the subdosha of Pitta that governs liver function and the color of the blood). It is ideal for facial toning; spritz your face after cleansing. It also helps moisturize the skin at bedtime, or before and after sun exposure.
As you can see, the healing powers of the rose extend far beyond its beauty. Make rose a part of your natural wellness regimen to promote a happy heart, radiant skin, and balanced emotions.
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