Full Moon in Taurus is fast approaching--the perfect time to make a fresh batch of ghee!
In the medical texts, it is recommended to make ghee during the waxing phase of the Moon and especially during the Full Moon. Additionally, ghee should be made during the lunar half of the day (evening). What is the wisdom behind these recommendations?
The Full Moon represents the brightest phase of the lunar cycle, and therefore the apex of nourishing (somagenic) energy in the atmosphere. The preparation of ghee during this particular time allows for ghee (as an essence food) to be maximally infused with nourishing and rejuvenating qualities.
Ghee is the essence of milk, and milk is the essence of grass. Those who wonder why Indians hold the cow in such esteem need only understand the role of ghee in health, as it is the cow's unique digestive system that extracts the essence of grass. Nature is green, and green foods are the most nourishing we can consume. The process of photosynthesis allows greens to capture the "fire" of the Sun and concentrate it in the form of chlorophyll. In this way, greens are the solar foundation for the white nourishing foods. Greens should be eaten to increase agni (solar force) while its essence, milk, should be consumed to increase soma (lunar force).
According to the Tibetan medical Tantras, it takes 6 days for food to be completely processed through each of the seven tissues, rendering the final tissue: the reproductive fluid (shukra dhātu). The essence of the reproductive tissue is the true vital essence, ojas. Milk has the unique ability to penetrate the seven tissues within 24hrs, quickly increasing the quantity of the reproductive fluid, and thereby the vital essence. This is why milk is considered to be a rasāyana (rejuvenative). Ghee, as the essence of milk, does not require as much processing, and instantly replenishes the vital essence. Thus, ghee is something akin to "instant ojas".
Milk is heavy with soma and requires significant agni to properly transform. In theory, it replenishes the reproductive tissue within 24hrs, but if agni is insufficient at any of the 6 tissues preceding the last dhātu, then it fails to be transformed at the next level, losing its rejuvenative capability and contributing to the formation of toxins instead. In contrast, ghee is light, easy to digest, and aids digestion. The process of making ghee also removes the hard-to-digest milk protein (casein) and sugar (lactose).
The Explanatory Tantra of Tibetan Medicine states:
"The end product of chain synthesis of bodily constituents [seven dhātus] beyond the regenerative fluid [shukra dhātu] is dhang [ojas], which is the supreme vitality. Although it resides in the heart, its energy pervades throughout the body to sustain life and brings vigor and radiance".
Another consideration relative to the preparation of ghee is environment and intention. Given ghee's essentialized nature, it is more transparent to the vibration of the environment and likewise to the intention of the person making it. Ghee is not only potentiated by the lunar phase, but by the consciousness of the person preparing it. The person preparing ghee should chant, or listen to the recitation of sacred texts or mantras, during the preparation of ghee to further potentiate it. In this case, ghee becomes more of an alchemical substance, a carrier of concentrated energies that exceed its materiality. With this understanding, we can begin to appreciate the reverence and passion with which ghee is discussed in traditional medical texts, the importance of astrology in medicine, and the ways in which medicine must be transparent to subtler anatomical realities in order to affect true healing.
If you don't know how to make ghee, it is very easy and worth learning. Otherwise, buy ghee from a trusted practitioner. It should always be organic and 100% grass-fed from happy cows (high butterfat is also a plus).