These incenses have a characteristic "earthy" or herbal scent to them. Tibetan incenses can contain 30 or more ingredients. In such methods and recipes, all natural ingredients are used such as flowers, leaves, grass, wood bark, spices and other such aromatic herbs which are native to Tibet, Nepal and north-west India in the Himalayas.
During ancient times, Tibetan people used to pay tribute to the Chinese Emperor by using the Tibetan incense as a form of highest respect.
In Tibetan medicine, incense is recognized as a way of treatment for sickness. This information can be found in Tibetan medical books which originated from the four Tantras (Root Tantra, Tantra of Enlightenment, Tantra of Instructions and the Concluding Tantra). To this day, it is the central work upon which Tibetan medicine is based.
Tibetan medical theory states that everything in the universe is made up of the 5 proto-elements Earth, Water, Fire, Wind or Air, and Space. But only four play a role in the classification of our illnesses. This includes all the other elements except Space.
Each element contains eight active forces and seventeen qualities. These elements are contained in our three bodily energies and their imbalance affects the equilibrium of our bodily functions.
Authentic Tibetan incense originates either from traditional monastery or medical college/hospital formulations. In order words, incense follows a particular ‘Lineage’ which can be traced back to their originator.
In addition, it needs to be mentioned that over the years, Tibetan incense making has been popularized and commercialized which has led to them being formulated and made by non-authentic sources which divert from the traditional masala making methods and several times do not use the traditional natural ingredients.