top of page

Herbology 101: Tulsi, aka. Holy Basil, "the Queen of Herbs", "the Incomparable One" (Part 2 of 2)

Tulsi is one of the most sacred plants in Ayurveda and often grown near temples and homes. I feel it's power every time I brew a pot of tea with this herb or use it in a tea blend - it's aroma is slightly spicy, slightly sweet, and immediately brings me a few breaths of peace and calm as I inhale the steam lifting off the hot water. Indeed, it is considered to be the most sacred sattvic herb, promoting peacefulness in the body-mind-energy system. "How does that work?" you might be asking.

As we know, Ayurveda considers the whole self, body, mind, and energy. Basil is highly valued for it's effects on the mind and energy systems as well as its effects on the body. It promotes perception and increases devotion. It will lift one's sense of the meditative state and can be used as part of your own mindfulness ritual. You can prepare your space for mediation by diffusing Tulsi essential oil or beginning with a cup of Tulsi tea. As a sattvic substance, increasing its use in our lives helps decrease the level of violence in our lives, thus increasing peace and calm. Tulsi from India is considered the strongest in this respect, but you can grow your own Holy Basil, and other basils, in your garden or in a pot or in a window box. Of course, go organic. Tulsi is often planted in front of houses and also grown indoors to help maintain the purity of an environment. We can grow some by an altar, or place dried leaves or sprigs there. We can add Holy Basil to water to make our own sacred water for drinking or for rituals. We can also use its essential oil.

Basil oil can be diffused to purify the air, and to cleanse the mind, nerves, and senses. If you've been in some cruddy energy, give yourself 15-20 min in the yoga pose Viparita Karani (Legs Up the Wall) while diffusing Basil oil and I'm sure you'll feel at least a little better. As mentioned earlier, basil will counter fever, and it can help clear phlegm (it's particularly supportive for the nerves and the lungs). It also has good anti-viral action. It helps to cleanse the large intestine and remove Apana Vayu (the downward moving life force). It creates space and purity, decreases cortisol, and helps us feel more peaceful and calm.

We can use Tulsi in teas, tinctures, essential oil diffusion, as a medicated oil for abhyanga, dried as a snuff, and as a steam for inhalation. It's usage in Ayurveda goes back over 3,000 years, so this is ancient plant medicine that has been with our species for a very long time. If you're new to plant medicine, I recommend starting with teas and essential oil diffusion, and find a teacher to guide you to other methods. And, of course, try growing your own! It's a wonderful tea plant and beloved by pollinators as well as people.

Click the button below to find out more about Tulsi's affects on our physical body and systems.

And for more, check out:

"Modern day scientific research into tulsi demonstrates the many psychological and physiological benefits from consuming tulsi and provides a testament to the wisdom inherent in Hinduism and Ayurveda, which celebrates tulsi as a plant that can be worshipped, ingested, made into tea and used for medicinal and spiritual purposes within daily life."

"Despite the lack of large-scale or long term clinical trials on the effect of tulsi in humans, the findings from 24 human studies published to date suggest that the tulsi is a safe herbal intervention that may assist in normalising glucose, blood pressure and lipid profiles, and dealing with psychological and immunological stress. Furthermore, these studies indicate the daily addition of tulsi to the diet and/or as adjunct to drug therapy can potentially assist in prevention or reduction of various health conditions and warrants further clinical evaluation."

5 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page