Champa is probably one of the most well known incense types (Yes, Nag Champa....). We will try define this type and its uniqueness in another post soon, but here we will just talk a little bit about the Champa flower and its glories.
Champa, or campaka in Sanskrit, is a large, evergreen tree with beautifully fragrant flowers that have long and thin petals. The flowers can be found in a range of colors from creamy white to orange. The tree is native in Indonesia, India and can be found in other parts of southern Asia.
The fragrance of the champa flower is strong and distinguished, and for this reason it had been an integral part of Indian spiritual worship from time immemorial.
In the Bhagavata Putana (3:21), Lake Bindu Sarovara lake, next to which the great sage Kardama Muni performed austerities, is described as surrounded by wonderfully fragrant, pious and spiritually elevating trees and flowers, among which the champaka flower is mentioned.
Mount Kailash, the abode of Lord Shiva is described in the Puranas as decorated with various kinds of beautiful fragrant trees. The champaka tree is mentioned among those trees.
The gopis of Vrindavan talked to the champaka trees in the Vrindavana forest while eagerly searching for Krishna, asking them if they had seen their beloved passing by.
The fragrance of the champa flower is characterized by its ability to spread to a wide diameter, and for this reason it is included in the traditional recipes of the champa family of incense, of which the famous "Nag champa" incense belongs. The flower is not only mentioned in the ancient Hindu scriptures for its fragrance but also for its beauty. When someone or something is to be praised for displaying a beautiful golden color, it is compared to the champa flower.
insert here vrinda devi stick incense