Updated: Nov 16, 2020
Smudging is the burning of herbs plants and resins for medicinal and spiritual use. Though it seems like witchcraft or magic, people have utilized smoke of therapeutic plants for healing all throughout time.
1. It Will Purify The Air
Smudging is said to reduce allergens, clearing the air of mold, pollution, pet dander, bacteria, cigarette smoke and dust. Studies show that airborne bacteria was reduced by 94% in one hour! This research included information from 50 countries over 5 continents. It has been proven that allergens and airborne pollutants will have either an positive or neutral charge. The key is to introduce negative ions into the air which attract to the positive ions and weighed them down so they can be swept or vacuumed up and not inhaled. If you are sensitive to allergens or would like to clean the air smudging could be something you may want to include in your weekly cleaning routine.
2. It Promotes Good Energy
Not only can herbal smoke disinfect the air, it also promotes positive energy. High levels of positive ions have been attributed to increased irritability, anxiety, tension and stress. Negative ions, however, reduce those effects all while having a increasing positive effect on performance and mood.
Negative air ion exposure associated with higher subjective ratings of alertness, atmospheric freshness, environmental/personal warmth, and a reduction in the overall complaint rate by 50%.
Before a interview with The Breakfast Club, Erykah Badu burned sage to clear the air of negative energy.
She carries a special ingredient to repel "broke" energy.
Common Herbs Used in Smudging
Frankincense associated with good fortune in business and also repels pest away. Could this be the secret ingredient Ms. Badu used as a repellent?
3. It Is A Aid In Healing
Smudging originated from indigenous people of the Americas. It was and still is used to bless and purify homes, and was practiced during healing ceremonies. Other forms or smoke-based remdies include Moxibustion, a traditional Chinese medicine technique that involves the burning of the herb mugwort to promote healing.
With smoke-based remedies the medicinal properties are delivered more quickly to the brain. It is a cost effective, non invasive way to deliver medicine to aid lung, brain and skin function.
4. It Is Aromatherapy
Aromatherapy is the inhalation of plant properties to achieve therapeutic benefits, a alternative form of medicine. Burning herbs is kind of like burning incense, it has a woodsy or floral aroma. Sense of smell is chemical connection to our brains. When we smell the chemicals, or vaporized molecules, go in our nostrils and dissolve into the mucus. Odorant receptors detect odors and transmit information to be further processed and play a role memory learning and emotions.
5. Its a Spiritual Ritual
You may recognize smudging as a witch craft or magic of some sort. However the use of incense dates back to the biblical times. Frankincense was recognized as a gift to the Son of God and was very popular in Christianity before its fall due to beliefs that is was witchcraft. Then it became popular in the Roman and Catholic church as a offering, and still practiced today. Some spiritual individuals use it to clear their aura. If you have been to a yoga studio you may have already experienced it mystical effects.
When to smudge?
When you move to a new home or start something new
Before and after you have company in your home
Before meditation or prayer
Before and after a yoga
Before and after therapy healing session
After an argument
After being in a crowded situation
How To Smudge
If you have any of the herbs going you could make your own "wand" by tying them together and allowing them to dry. You could even get started right now if you have bay leaf in your spice cabinet. Though with loose herbs or resins, it is best to use a charcoal burning disk inside of a censor.
Or you could just buy them online of course, however buying sage from just anyone could be a spiritual disadvantage. If you do not make your own smudging wand, I recommend purchasing from Nur Naturals, where you can be assured good intentions are set while you bundle are being crafted. You can get three bundles plus a beautiful abalone shell, a heat resistant shell used in traditional ceremonies, and stand. Nur Naturals also create a combination smudging stick that has the benefit of both rose and lavender.
Once you have your herbs, light the them until there is a light ember, if a flame occurs you want to softly shake until it embers. Once its smokes use you hand to wave the smoke over your body and chant positive words. If your doing this to cleanse the air you can skip that step and began walking through your space. Next, wave the smoke in all corners of the space. Once done you can let it burn out or put it out in the abalone shell.
What ever method you choose for what ever reason you chose to do it, burning medicinal herbs can enhance you quality of life. Let us know what you think.