The medicinal properties and benefits of these incenses are utilized thru inhalation. They are also used to create various ambiences and moods such as relaxation, meditation, purification etc. They are typically made in accordance to strict Vedic & Ayurvedic principles and are used for devotional rituals and practices.
In Tibetan medical field, Tibetan 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 sa (Earth), chu (Water), me (Fire), rLung (Wind or Air), and Nam-mkha (Space). But only four play a role in the classification of our illnesses, except Nam-mkha (Space). Each element contains eight active forces and seventeen qualities. Some these elements are contained in our three bodily energies and their imbalance affects the equilibrium of the three ‘fluids’ (rLung, mkhrispa and badkan).
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. Tibetan peoples used to pay tribute to the Chinese Emperor by using the Tibetan incense as a form of highest respect.
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.