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Herbs That Make You Cross Oceans

   All human beings have the desire to visit foreign nations.  There is an important reason for the general prevalence of this desire.  It is natural for man, right from birth, to learn unknown things and look for new experiences It is this desire that made man cross oceans and fly in the sky.  In olden days man travelled abroad for three important reasons: First he travelled in search of knowledge, second to import  and export commodities, thirdly for military operations.  

As days went by, man began to travel abroad in search of jobs.  For several centuries it is in the blood of Tamils to travel abroad.  A particular sect of ancient Tamils called ‘Nagarathaar’ who lived in the urban setting travelled to many nations. And they brought back innumerable treasures.

They not only brought treasures, they also spread our culture in many nations.  If today, Tamil culture shines in countries like Burma, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore it is because of the Nagarathaar who travelled to these places.

Seeing the Nagarathaar, the other people also began to travel abroad to strengthen their economy.  Before Indian independence, a vast majority of the Tamils from the northern Tamil Nadu, were engaged in different types of trade in Burma.  In the same way, a good number of artisans and merchants from southern Tamil Nadu went towards Sri Lanka.

 This explains why, even today Tamil merchants are powerful in Colombo. But today, Tamils don’t prefer to go to Burma and Sri Lanka.  Some years ago there was craze for the gulf countries. Now, the interest to go to gulf countries, has died out.

Many Tamils prefer to work and engage in business, in American and European countries.  Experienced people who know the facts say that it is better to work in Avadi for a salary of 50,000 than in America for a salary of 5,00,000.

These people think so, not without reason.  It is difficult to get accommodation in European countries.  Even if you get the accommodation, the rents are high.  Although there are several Indian restaurants, the prices are above the budget of the common man.

Although many jobs in the European countries are on contract basis, the companies dismiss Indians instantly, when the results are not satisfactory.  There is no security for the job.  Over and above all these, the difficulties of those, who attempt to take their family along with them, cannot be explained in words. Starting from drinking water to following the culture, there is nothing but only problem.

There are many who return to India, because they are not able to cope with the problems.  A good number of foreign returners say homeland is a heaven.  We hear a lot of stories about the difficulties and problems of those working in the gulf countries.  In spite of all these there is still a craze for foreign jobs.

What is the real reason for this? Is it to roam around the world? Or is to acquire the knowledge of the foreigners.  People definitely don’t go abroad for these two reasons.  The real reason is found in the Tamil proverb that says cross the oceans to accumulate wealth. It is to strengthen the economy, that many people go abroad today.

There are also other reasons why people want to go abroad.  For Indians, anything that is made abroad has special attraction. Even an ordinary pin, when it is made abroad has more attraction compared to the one made in India.  My mother preserves carefully even till today, the American toys that my father bought in the streets of Colombo fifty years ago.

The reason is not only that the toys were bought by my father. If that is the reason, my mother should have preserved also the other objects bought by my father.  But there are no traces of those objects.  The reason why these toys are preserved is the inscription ‘Made in USA.  This thinking and habit is commonly prevalent among all ages of the Tamil people.

The craze is not only for foreign things. There is an extraordinary respect and attraction for foreign education.  A friend of mine in Tirunelveli was looking for an alliance for his daughter.  There were two offers.  One, a doctor with MS running his own clinic, with good income. The other an ordinary MBBS doctor. My friend chose the second doctor.

I was surprised by his choice.  I enquired if the character of the first boy was not satisfactory or if the family background was not good.  He the choice was not because of character or family background.  The real reason is that the second boy had completed his MBBS in Russia.  And he was proud about his choice.  I couldn’t say anything.  Even if I tell him that Russian education is not superior in any way to Indian education, he is not going to listen.  He would only brand me a mad man.

Not only this friend of mine.  Like him, there are many people who consider foreign studies to be like rare stones brought from the moon.  If you spread a rumor that the Murukku in the corner shop is made in America, the murukkus will be sold no sooner than you can imagine.  To that extent our people are addicted to anything that is foreign.

There is a proverb that says, in a village of naked people, one with dress will be considered mad. Our situation is similar to this proverb.  You should not be surprised if people consider you mad when you tell them, that it is better to catch a rabbit in our homeland than to catch a deer abroad,

Parents frequently ask me astrology related questions like ‘When will my son or daughter get married?  When will I get an heir to my properties, Can I buy properties?’  One question that all parents invariably don’t forget to ask is: ‘Will my son go abroad?’
If I tell them, “Yes your son will go abroad” their faces will brighten up.  The beauty of that facial expression cannot be explained in words.  I would like to mention something here, that may not be very important.  But I feel it is worth considering.  Parents who ask if their son will go abroad, never ask if their son will get settled there, or if he will marry a foreign girl.  The reasons for this are obvious.

Many youngsters like to go abroad just to earn more money.  We cannot say this is wrong. Even a fellow who sells rags, when looking for alliance, asks if the girl can give fifty pound gold.  To buy essential commodities like grinder, mixie, you need to spend a few thousands.  The minimum rent for houses today starts at two thousands rupees. The price of provisions and vegetables keep rising.  

In this situation, for the common man money has become an unavoidable necessity.  People feel that they have to somehow make more money.  I don’t think there is anything wrong in thinking of going abroad to earn money, rather than stealing, cheating or breaking the law. 

There is something good in going abroad to earn money.  People who come back from abroad, after five or ten years of hardships, are able to start a business of their own and settle in life with whatever little they could save.

Instead of lavishly spending the savings, settling down with a self employment is something to be welcomed.  But how many foreign returners are able to settle down like this?  We do come across many people, who spend all their savings for their children’s marriages and studies, and then become empty handed. The consoling factor here is, that they are able to achieve at least that. 

A friend of mine once asked me, how in olden days the nagarathaar could easily go abroad and be successful in their businesses.  Only a very few lost in their businesses.  To go very easily abroad and be successful in their businesses, apart from using their brain, did they use anything else?

To answer my friend’s question clearly, I did not have any information at that time.  But that question triggered my interest to find an answer.  Once a Saadhu who came from Tiruvannamalai, told me that in olden days, the Settimaargal used anjanams made of rare herbs, to make their foreign trips successful.  But the Saadhu did not have the complete information about the anjanam.  I looked for the information in some old manuscripts.  But I could not get any information.

An old man living in the forest, used to bring some rare herbs.  He used to expect more money for the herbs, as it was difficult to search for them in the forest.  But the herbs provided by him were pure and original.  Once he asked me if I wanted the herb that makes one cross oceans. 

I asked for some details about the herb.  He said that in olden days settiyars who travelled abroad kept with them anjanams made of this herb.  They believed that this prevented all problems in their business abroad.  There would be no dangers.  Money would flow easily.  Business related problems could easily be solved.  The old man further added that this anjanam could be used even today by people who wish to go but have difficulties in going abroad for jobs or business.

I never hesitated to accept my ignorance on a topic that I did not have any information.  So I told the old man, just getting the herb would be of no use without knowing the method to prepare the anjanam.  He admitted he did not know either.  But he said there was an elder who would teach the method if he was offered money.  So I asked him to bring the elder and learned the method form him.

I would like to write openly about the method, in order to help common people.  From the medical shops that sell native medicines, you can get the following items: valampuri kaai, idampuri kaai, thaandrikaai, kadukkai, aagaya thaamarai, vetti ver, saaranai ver, agil kattai, sandal wood and devathaaru kattai.  Burn all these ingredients in camphor and make ashes.

Now grind the ashes and make a nice powder. Sift the powder, mix it with gingili oil and dry the paste in the morning sun. After completely drying the paste burn them again in camphor and keep the resulting ashes in bronze containers.   

Keep the bronze container in the pooja room in front of Vinayakar and pray the moola manthiram ‘om gang ganapathiye namaha’ in the mornings 1008 times.  In this way energize the ashe for 45 days.  During these 45 days pure vegetarian diet has to be maintained.  Strict brahmachariyam has to be observed.  If you compromise on these vows, you won’t get good results.  You should avoid going to funerals and houses of newborns.  After energizing for 45 days, take the herbal ashes from the bronze container, and mix it with pure ghee and sandal oil to make a paste. While making the paste keep praying the manthiram: 

‘om yang sang kleem kumbat swaha’

Now take the paste in bronze container and mix with it bootha vethaala uppu, kana erumai virucha paal and mathimayakki ver. Then close the container and make it air tight.  The container has to be buried under a banana tree for 45 days.  During these 45 days mix turmeric with the water that you pour for the tree.

After 45 days take the container from the ground and energize the paste for 25 days with the recitation of the moola manthiram received from the Guru.  Now mix ghee with the paste and keep it in a container.  This paste will attract foreign business related opportunities. Obstacles related to foreign travel and business, will get cleared on their own.  This anjanam will help not only foreign businesses; it can also be used by people involved in local business to accumulate wealth.

It is hard to believe these things.  You might wonder if this could be true or if it could be possible. Initially I too had all these doubts.  But I was surprised after seeing the positive results it brought in the lives of the people to whom I gave the paste.  Our ancestors had these kinds of precious knowledge about herbs.  Excepting personal experiences, we have no other concrete evidences to prove the truth of all these. 

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