Rasa-sastra is a new development in Ayurveda as it is not mention in traditional eight specialties. Primarily its objective was to make the fragile human body stable so as to enable one to strive for worldly enjoyment and salvation. This was known as Deha-Vedha later extended to treatment of various disorders. The ancient texts of Rasaastra such as Rasari:iava and Rasa Hdaya-Tantra contain materials of Deha Vedha only and no treatments of diseases as found in Rasa Ratna Sammuchaya.
Rasendra-Maiigal, apart from describing the Sarhskaras of parada describes certain formulations applicable in diseases like Gulma, Kamalä etc. Moreover, in the beginning it has been said that one who follows this text would not fail in treatment of diseases as Nagarjuna himself declared. It indicates two things. First, the text is of later origin and secondly that the author is different from Nägarjunas mentions here and there and it is also difficult to say definitely which Nagarjuna was the author of this text. The editor of the present text has already enumerated several Nagarjunas.
The text was published in 1924; it is not clear what manuscript it was based on. This published text contains 1-4 chapters. The present edition is based on two other manuscripts one from Jamnagar and other from Bikaner. But still the text remains incomplete because the entire text contains eight chapters. It is learnt that chapters 5-8 are available in manuscript with the Wellcome Institute of History of Medicine, London. In this way, the present edition may be called as the first part while the remaining four chapters would make the second part, then only the text can be taken as complete. It is expected from the editor that he would not take rest until the remaining second part is duly edited and published.
Kaviraja Han Shankar Sharma is a well known name in the field of Rasa-sastra. He has profound scholarship and long experience in the subject and has ably edited this present text. I congratulate him for this important contribution to Ayrvedic literature with a request to complete the second part as early as possible.
Nagarjuna's Rasendramangalam was originally written in Sanskrta. The copies of this manuscript are available in Telugu, Malayalam, Devanagari and other scripts. The text was edited only once and published by l3huva nehvari Pitha, Gondal (Gujarat) in 1924. In this edition many misprints and incomplete portion of verses are kept as it is without any attempt to complete the verses. Presently the book is out of print.
The work has eight chapters. But only first four chapters were available in the published edition and manuscripts. I have compared this published edition with manuscripts obtained, from the Gujarat Ayurveda University, Jamnagar and Rajasthan Pracya Vidya Pratisthana, Government Office, Bikaner. The first four sections are ready and presented here with. English and Hindi translations and notes. However the Bikaner ms. has been mainly followed by me and the left-out portion has been completed with the other edition and Jamnagar copy.