Smudging. You may picture a crazy, older woman wearing flowing robes dancing among a cloud of smoke all throughout her house, choking on the inhalation of sage and chanting to her
pets. Or, maybe you are that crazy older woman (like I am at heart). Allowing an open mind to the benefits that smudging can have on your space and life can make a world of difference. I began my smudging practice years ago after hearing how it clears out negative energy, creating openness for fresh, new energy to fill in the
void. I was in awe how something so basic and simple allowed for a whole new feeling to myself & my environment. I opened myself to have a monthly ritual of out with the old, in with the new- which manifests beyond the four corners of your house into all corners of your life.
Smudging is a Native American tradition, and tribes are known to use dried sage bundles for ceremonial use, cleansing their space of stale energy, and for Shaman healing. It’s similar to doing a spring cleaning of your space, with the cleaning being done on the energy within the home rather than the actual, physical mess. It’s a spiritual clean up.
Benefits of Smudging:
1.Cleansing negative space
The idea is that the smoke that comes off of the lit bundle will attach itself to the negative energy in the air, allowing both the smoke and the energy to dissipate. Allowing the smoke to flow over your body after a rather difficult or negative day can cleanse the negative energy your body has a hold of. If that sounds too woo-woo for you, know that scientifically, smudging releases negative ions that bind with positive ions that make us feel fatigued, sluggish or emotional, allowing them to dissipate as well. Also, scientific studies show that sage smudging purifies the air up to 94% of harmful bacteria.
Using the beautiful, earthy smell as a natural aromatherapy is another benefit of sage
g. Depending on the bundle you purchase, depends on the scent that is released. A typical sage bundle lets off this beautiful, earthy, desert-y smell that reminds me so much of home. To me, the scent smells so familiar from somewhere I cannot remember, that it is actually a comfort. If you purchase a bundle with different herbs, such as lavender flowers or juniper leaves, it will add a depth and richness to the scent of the smoke.
3. Cleansing your crystals
If you are a crystal collector, admirer, or owner, you might know that you need to cleanse your crystals often. This is because crystals have their own vibrational energy, and when they are used in healing, or even simply around negative energy, they can pick up on that vibration. To use your crystals to their full potential, they need to be cleansed There are many ways to do this-including water, intention, and also sage smudging. Allowing the smoke to flow over the crystals brings them back to their normal neutral state of vibration and allows them to work to their highest degree.
What Can I Use for Smudging?
- Sage, or Sage Bundle Variants
Sage is usually the first choice people go to when they begin smudging. This may be due to tradition, or unknowing of other options. This is usually my first choice. You can enter any metaphysical store and you will find bundles of sage. Explore with what you like. Maybe you like white sage with lavender. Maybe you like blue sage with juniper. Maybe, typical plain sage is more your thing. Find one you resonate with and give it a try.
2. Palo Santo
Palo Santo is wood that comes from the Palo Santo tree indigenous to South America. It means “holy wood” and is used among new agers and Shamans alike. Using Palo Santo for cleansing yourself, your space or your crystals will do the same as a bundle of sage would, with a different, milder scent. It has a piney, mint smell to it that is intoxicating. Allow yourself to experiment with both sage and Palo Santo to see what your personal preference is.
How do I Sage?
You understand why you are going to sage, you have the materials to begin, now how do you do it? For me, I begin at my front door and light the bundle, using either a cup or an abalone shell underneath to catch the ash. I make sure a fire is lit, and then blow it out allowing the smoke to release. I walk to each room, allowing the smoke to fill the air, and mentally focusing on cleansing the negative energy out. I walk to all corners of the house, beginning on the lower level, throughout each room, and ending on the top level. I prefer to end in my bedroom because I feel an abundance of energy there, as it’s such a personal space. When I finish, mentally acknowledge and thank he sage for allowing me to use it for my benefit.
What are your experiences with smudging? How does your smudging practice differ? Let me know in the comments.
Light and Love.