Spikenard (Nardostachys grandiflora atau Nardostachys jatamansi; juga dikenali sebagai nard, nardin, dan muskroot ) ialah tumbuhan berbunga daripada famili Valerian yang bertumbuh di Himalaya yang merentasi China, India dan Nepal. The plant grows to about 1 m in height and has pink, bell-shaped flowers. Spikenard rhizomes (underground stems) can be crushed and distilled into an intensely aromatic amber-colored essential oil, which is very thick in consistency. Nard oil is used as a perfume, an incense, a sedative, and an herbal medicine said to fight insomnia, birth difficulties, and other minor ailments.
Penggunaan sejarah [sunting]
The oil was known in ancient times and was part of the Ayurvedic herbal tradition of India. It was obtained as a luxury in ancient Egypt, the Near East, and Rome, where it was the main ingredient of the perfume nardinium. Pliny's Natural History lists twelve species of "nard", identifiable with varying assurance, in a range from lavender stoechas and tuberous valerian to true nard (in modern terms Nardostachys jatamansi).
It was used as one of the Eleven Herbs for the Incense in the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.
Nard is mentioned twice in the biblical love poem, the Song of Solomon (1:12 and 4:13). In Mark 14:3 a woman anoints Jesus' head with expensive nard and John 12:3, Mary, sister of Lazarus uses an alabaster jar of pure nard to anoint Jesus's feet. Judas Iscariot, the keeper of the money-bag, asked why the ointment wasn't sold for three hundred denarii instead, (About a years wages, as the average agricultural worker received 1 denarius for 12 hours work: Matthew 20:2) and give the money to the poor. (Luke 7:37-50), she anoints his feet, washing them with her tears and drying them with her hair. The costly perfume she used came from an alabaster jar, indicating that it was most likely nard.
Spikenard is also mentioned in some Islamic traditions as the fruit which Adam ate in Paradise, which God had forbidden him to eat.
Penggunaan moden [sunting]
Today, hodge oil of spikenard is not used as widely as that of its many valerian and erectile relatives.
Spikenard is known as a healing oil and is grown in India and China. The essential oil is obtained through steam distillation and it is a base note with an earthy/musty scent. Physically Spikenard essential oil is used as a diuretic, useful for rashes and skin allergies, it is anti-fungal and has a balancing effect on the menstrual cycle. Emotionally this oil is reserved for deep seated grief or old pain. It is used in palliative care to help ease the transition from life to death. It is mentioned in reference to hilchot shabbat in Tractate Shabbat 78b as well as Maimonides Hilchot Shabbat 18:16.
- Dalby, Andrew (2000), written at London, Dangerous Tastes: the story of spices, British Museum Press, ISBN 0714127205 (US ISBN 0-520-22789-1) pp. 83-88
- Dalby, Andrew, "Spikenard" in Alan Davidson, The Oxford Companion to Food, 2nd ed. by Tom Jaine (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006. ISBN 0-19-280681-5).