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Key features of Kashi Ashtagandha tilak powder
Sandalwood paste or Ashtagandha is integral to rituals and ceremonies, to mark religious utensils, and to decorate the icons of the deities. It is also distributed to devotees, who apply it to their foreheads or the necks and chests.
The paste is prepared by grinding wood by hand upon granite slabs shaped for the purpose. With the slow addition of water, a thick paste results which is mixed with saffron or Kesar to make chandanam or Ashtagandha powder. Chandanam, further mixed with herbs, perfumes, pigments, and some other compounds, results in javadhu. In India after religious tonsure, sandalwood paste is applied to protect the skin. In Hinduism and Ayurveda, sandalwood is thought to bring one closer to the divine. Thus, it is one of the most used holy elements in Hindu and Vedic societies.