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1. Religious Origins
Matthew’s Gospel second chapter brings out us that the Magi presented
three gifts to newly born child Jesus. As three gifts are mentioned in
the story, traditionally we believe that there were three Magi as
Balthasar, Gaspar and Melchior and the gifts were gold, myrrh and
frankincense. These three gifts had a symbolic meaning and as well as
they likely had a realistic purpose particularly in the flight into
Egypt and return to Nazareth.
The Gold means a gift for a King which symbolizes Jesus’ kingship and
Frankincense was used by priests as incense, so it symbolizes Jesus’
priesthood. In embalming the dead, Myrrh was used and so it symbolically
indicates that Jesus was also born to die. So we can see that simply
these three elements, Gold, frankincense and myrrh represent Royalty,
Divinity, and Mortality. Also the gold is well known as an unchangeable
metal, it is compared to the genuine faith.
2. Myrrh as an Ancient Cure
Myrrh is a fragrant oleoresin of genre Commiphora which is a number
of tiny, prickly tree species grow in stony, dry soil. An oleoresin is a
natural combine of an important resin and an essential oil. Myrrh
oleoresin is considered as a natural gum as well.
Myrrh is used commonly in Unani and Ayurveda medicine, which assign
rejuvenative and tonic properties to this resin by using many “rasayana”
formulas in Ayurveda. Also “non rasayana” myrrh is contraindicated when
stomach pain or kidney dysfunction is perceptible and for pregnant
women and women who have extreme uterine bleeding. Also it is considered
as one of the greatest essences for the treatments of nervous system
disorders, rheumatic complaints and circulatory problems.
In conventional Chinese medicine, myrrh is considered as a neutral
temperature element which is spicy and bitter. It is well known as an
extraordinary efficacy on the liver, spleen meridians, heart and as well
as “blood conveying” powers to cleanse inert blood from the uterus.
Therefore it is recommended for circulatory, rheumatic and arthritic
problems and for uterine tumors such as amenorrhea, menopause and
3. Frankincense as an Ancient Cure
Frankincense is also called as Olibanum and it is an aromatic resin
gained from Boswellia genus trees, mainly by Boswellia sacra. Boswellia
has four main species which produce frankincense and all the types of
resin are available in a variety of grades which depend on many
Frankincense resin is safe to eat and frequently used in a variety of
traditional medicines in Asian region for diseased skin and digestion.
Frankincense must be cleaned before the consumption, meaning it must be
transparent and should not have any brown or black impurities. It is
normally light yellow colored with a slight tint of green. It is also
can be chewed like gum, but little bit stickier as it is a resin.
In Ayurvedic medicine, Frankincense named as “Boswellia serrata” and
it is usually referred to as “dhoopan” in Ayurveda. It has been used for
thousands of years for treating the arthritis, strengthening the female
hormone system, cleansing the atmosphere from undesirable bacterial and
healing wounds. In the Asian culture, it is believed that burning some
frankincense every day in the house conveys good health to the
inhabitants. Though they have done it with a superstitious belief, the
scientific evidences proves that burning frankincense keeps away the
mosquitoes and also helps protect us from mosquito-borne diseases such
as West Nile Virus, Dengue Fever and Malaria.
4. Use of Myrrh and Frankincense in the Modern World
Myrrh is used as an antibacterial in gargles, toothpastes and
mouthwashes for treatment and prevention of the gum diseases in the
modern dentistry. Myrrh is presently used in many ointments
which can be applied to scratches and slight skin diseases. It also has
been recommended as a painkiller for toothaches and to use as a cream
for sprains, bruises and aches.
The frankincense’s essential oil is produced by steam distillation of
the natural resin and its chemical elements are sesquiterpenes,
monoterpenes, monoterpenoles, ketones and sesquiterpenols. It has a
sweet fragrance and good balsamic with a smell which is very fresh. So
Frankincense is used in perfumes and incense.
Olibanum or Frankincense is categorized by a slightly lemon,
fragrance of incense and balsamic spicy with an undertone which slightly
looks like conifer. It is used in the pharmaceuticals, perfumes and
Latest experimentation results are proving that frankincense is very
effective in the treatments for chronic diseases such as ulcerative
colitis, Osteoarthritis and Crohn’s disease.
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