Ṛśi Parāśara was one of the six disciples of Maharṣi Atreya and a co-student of sage Agniveṣa. He wrote a treatise on medicine which is not available now. The word Parāśara means a posthumous son, but we have no evidence to prove if Parāśara was posthumously born.
Many learned authors took references from Parāśara's works. Though there is a possibility of his work being lost forever, we find quotations from his work found in other works. The point that medical authors of repute have quoted him prove that he must have been held as a reputed authority in his times.
References About Parāśara
- Medical authors belonging to various ages have quoted substantively from Parāśara.
- He was one of the Rṣis invited by Romapada to learn the science of the treatment of elephants.
- In Hasti-Ayurveda, a treatise on the treatment of elephants, Parāśara is referred to as under:
Parāśara, Acuda, Matanga and Urmimali were also invited.
- A treatise called Takra-kalpa, the pharmaceutics of buttermilk is also ascribed to him. There are many specimen quotations from him which are found in many other medical works of repute.
- Śatshabdais used to signify the six treatises on medicine as composed by Agniveṣa, Bhela Jatukarṇa, Harita, Kṣarapani and Parāśara.
- Dalhana quotes Parāśara.
- Vagbhatta mentions that each of the disciples of Atreya has composed a treatise Arunadatta, while commenting on this line makes it clear by mentioning the names of each author, Parāśara being one of them. This commentator quotes Parāśara at various places e. g. in the description of various kinds of rice.
- Hemadri, the other commentator of Vagbhata, in his commentary Ayurveda Rasāyaṇa quotes Parāśara.
- Cakrapāṇi quotes him in his commentary Ayurveda-dipikā.
- Śivadāsa in his commentary Vyākhya-kusumāvali quotes him in several places.
- Hasti Ayurveda 28
- The Caraka Samhita published by Shree Gulabkunverba Ayurvedic Society, Jamnagar, India