Isryk, Nurillo Khudaymuradov (Uzbekistan) – Exquisite Art
Using his writing style, Nurillo depicted the twigs with trihedral bolls of a dried herb, Isryk, which is so prevalent in Central Asia and worldwide.
According to the legends, the tribes of ancient Aryans who gave birth to the civilizations of Europe, Iran and India knew the sacred drink, “The Elixir of Immortals”, named Soma (Khaoma), contained Isryk.
Ancient inhabitants of the Iranian upland worshipped many deities of Mesopotamia and Babylon. One of them was the goddess Isfand, the goddess of the Moon, and the herb dedicated to this goddess – Isryk or Harmala – wore the name of this ancient goddess and was used in religious and mystical rituals. Today, Isryk and incense are burned on the Navruz holiday in Iran to honour the tradition; the seeds are scattered on burning coals at weddings to drive away the evil forces and eyes. It is also believed that smoke can dispel many diseases.
Dervishes, the adherents of the Muslim mystical brotherhood of the Sufis, used the seeds of isryk ritually to change the consciousness and achieve religious ecstasy. Bedouins called it Harmel or Gariyal and believed that Harmel was a woman. Arabian sages believed that “an angel waiting for a man seeking healing watched every root, every sheet of Harmel.” And if there is a bunch of adrespan in the house, devas and jinnas could not reach the place and will stay seventy houses away and a small amount of juice of the isryk leaves or its seeds, taken daily, protects from seventy illnesses.
Isryk is the first remedy for the evil eye, especially for children. In Central Asia, Isryk has been used as an amulet for a long time: a bundle of the herb is suspended near the house entrance to protect it from the evil eye. When a woman brings a newborn into the house, the whole place is fumigated with the isryk smoke before bringing the baby into the room, and a bunch of the herb is suspended on the right side of the door jamb inside the room and put under the bedding in the cradle. Isryk seeds are sewn into a tissue bag – tumour – and worn on the body.