I am not an Ayurveda Specialist but went through Charak Samhita and once again felt proud of how thorough our ancestors were in their research and knowledge.
The smoking here is not related to cigarettes available in the market or any form of smoking usually known to people. The smoking here is purely based on Ayurvedic principles for better health.
The benefits of smoking are mostly in the diseases originating from Vaat and Kaf in the part of the body above neck viz., eyes, ears, mouth, throat etc. For example, this smoking is good for hair diseases, headache, and bad smell from the mouth, toothache etc.
The materials used for smoking are very different however. Normally available in the market or generally known to people is just tobacco. In case of Charak Samhita the list of materials is very long. I will mention just few: Ghee, wax, Keshar (Saffron), Chandan (Sandal), Guggul, ChhotiElaichi (cardamom) etc.
I always thought why people would take the smoke out of their nose but that is actually suggested in Charak Samhita. If inhaled through mouth, the smoke should be exhaled through nose and vice versa.
According to Charak Samhita, there are times when the affects of Vaat and Kaf are at an increased level or when smoking will be most beneficial. The suggested times to smoke are:
How much smoking is safe: There are restrictions to the amount of smoke that should be consumed at one time. It should not be more than 9 Ghoont (sip) anytime in one go. There is also a mention that the individual should think of his constitution (physical) before deciding on how many times a day this needs to be done. In general it varies from 1 to 4 times.
Charak Samhita warns not to do excessive smoking as it could cause deafness, problems with clear vision, tongue related problems, blood related problems etc.
I have written this article just out of interest. I am no genius in Ayurveda. Any kind of smoking should be consulted with an Ayurvedacharya to get the most benefits or if it should not be done at all because Charak Samhita restricts smoking to certain people, times and quantities. The misuse could be injurious to health.
Author - Archit
लाभस्तेषां जयस्तेषां कुतस्तेषां पराजयः I येषामिन्दीवरश्यामो हृदयस्थो जनार्दनः II