Collecting the folklore and uses of plants


A bust of the twelfth-century Indian philosopher, social reformer and statesman was unveiled by Narendra Modi, the prime minister of India, in November 2015, on the Albert Embankment, London Borough of Lambeth.

A conspicuous feature of the bust is the garland of Elaeocarpus ganitrus seeds – rudraksha around his neck.  Elaeocarpus ganitrus is a widespread tree throughout much of Asia.  Rudraksha, particularly associated with Lord Shiva, usually worn in garlands consisting on 109 seeds, provide protection and are used as prayer-beads.

Photographed January 2021.

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