Since ancient times, human beings found that by burning dried herbs and plants they can create aromatic smoke. In other word, the physical form of many roots, barks, plants, and herbs is altered into smoke or spirit form.
It is actually a sacred spirit, and a pure nature of herbs, which allows them to be used for:
- Religious ceremonies
- Emotional, physical, spiritual, and mental healing
- Space or body cleansing
- Altering, or shifting consciousness
- Personal exploration
A great number of aromatic herbs and plants have been used for the above mentioned purposes in each culture’s everyday activities.
But, What Is Smudging?
It is actually a purification act, which can eliminate the negative energy and emotions from a specific person or place.
Additionally, smudging includes the burning of plants and the use of smudge sticks. In general, people use their hands or certain smudging feathers to fan the smoke across the body or around a space for healing or cleansing.
Moreover, Jane Alexander is an American author, actress, and ex director of the National Endowment for the Arts. She wrote in her book named The Smudging and Blessings Book that smudging can help you:
- Get rid of negative energy in a space
- Boost your confidence, hope, and energy
- Free yourself of old relationships
- Look for love
- Promote good night’s sleep
- Eliminate stress
- Feel more protected from the world
This ancient act of purification is based on the belief that the smoke of burning herbs can carry prayers to the heavens.
These Plants Are the Most Commonly Used Ones in the Creation of Smudge Sticks:
- Sage eliminates negative energy and emotions
- Cedar leaf cleanses and purifies
- Sagebrush heals and treats wounds, common colds, and headaches
- Pine needles purifies and cleanses
- Lavender calms
- Sweetgrass purifies, heals, and brings positive energy
- Juniper purifies and cleanses
- Desert chaparral removes negative energy, calms and protects
- Tulsi or holy basil calms and purifies
- Mullein cleanses sickrooms and enhances the function of respiratory system
- Balsam fir cleanses and purifies
- Rosemary purifies and protects
- Rose petals attracts love, calms and helps you mediate
- Mugwort lucid calms and purifies
- Yarrow removes any toxins from the body
- Lemon balm calms and helps in spiritual cleansing
- Peppermint heals and protects
Here Is How to Prepare Your Own Smudge Sticks:
- Start by cutting 7-10 inches of the branches of the herb or plant.
- Next, you should cut a piece of thin cord, which is 4 times the cut branches’ length and bundle the branches together.
- Afterwards, start wrapping the cord tightly around the bundle’s base. But, make sure that the branches’ tips are pointing down.
- In addition, consider wrapping the cord around the bundle to the tip of the branches. Plus, it is recommended to firmly press the herbs together.
- Once the tip is reached, you should also wrap it toward the base.
- Do not forget to tie the cord ends together at the base.
- At least, you should place the smudge stick in a basket or on a drying screen for a couple of weeks in order to dry.
How to Use It:
By using a candle, match or lighter, you should light the smudge stick’s tip. As soon as you notice that there is a steady flame of the smudge stick, it is advisable to blow it out in order to smolder and smoke. You can use an abalone shell, a bowl or any other fire-safe receptacle for holding under the smudge stick.
Afterwards, consider fanning the smoke over your body as well as throughout the space. You can use your hand or a feather for this purpose.
In case you cannot make your own smudge sticks, then consider buying them from Mountain Rose Herbs or handcrafted Wild Chaparral Smudge Sticks.
Note: Consult your doctor before using smudging or any similar purification practice. Keep in mind that the FDA does not like any claims, so consider this information as educational.
- Alexander, Jane. ”The Smudging and Blessings Book: Inspirational Rituals to Cleanse and Heal”;
- Kinkele, Thomas. ”Incense and Incense Rituals: Healing Ceremonies for Spaces of Subtle Energy”;