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Incense Ingredient

Borneol & Camphor

Japanese: Ryu-no

Borneol Crystals
Borneol Crystals (Natural)

D. aromatica
Dryobalanops aromatica Gaertn. f.

The technical name is Borneolum Syntheticum. It is also commonly produced from the Blumea balsamifera (L.) DC. This is highly abundant.

Camphor is also produced by both species, although the D. Aromatica G. is considered superior for both Borneol and Camphor. B. Balsamifera is considered to produce a higher quality Camphor than C. Camphora and is commonly used in Chinese medicine. It contains about 25% Borneol. Camphor (ngai p'ien) is commonly produced from C. Camphora but not Borneol. Most medicinal Chinese camphor comes from B. Balsamfera.

Borneol is highly unstable and easily turns to Camphor with oxidation.

Borneol has been used as a medicine by many Asian cultures. It is a very important ingredient in many Japanese incense formulas. It may be particularly helpful in helping to carry the other aromas and produce the needed alertness required in meditative practice.