What Is and Why You Should Embrace The Art of Smudging
Most of us have heard of smudging, but do you know the meaning behind the practice and why most people practice it? You might be wondering...does it work? To understand this wonderful ritual we need to take a brief look at the history of it.
Smudging is a ceremonial practice of burning scared plants, allowing the smoke to cleanse and bless a space with intention. This highly spiritual ceremony is an age-old form of cleansing and blessing that has been practiced for centuries by an abundance of ethnic groups and spiritual faiths, including Hindus, Buddhists, Maoris, Aboriginals, Balinese, and First Nations and Natives of the Americas.
The main tool used during a smudging ceremony is the sacred smudge bundle. There are a multitude of plant materials that can be used, each with their own purpose. Some of the most common ones are: sage, palo santo, cedar, sweet grass, and lavender.
Probably the most popular choice for smudging is White Sage. Sage, also known as Salvia is used for a deep cleansing and is associated with purity. You might be wondering, well when is the right time to smudge. As it turns out, whenever you feel bogged down or an abundance of negative energy, one can smudge. White sage is best known for its potency and sanitizing properties which makes it ideal for use after a traumatic event or going through a drastic change. Don't let that limit you though, sage is an excellent way to eliminate negative vibrations and energies from one's space or even their very own aura.
- Smudging your home with White Sage will bring a sense of lightness and brightness to the space and cleanse the space of any negativity.
- Smudging yourself after a stressful situation will bring you peace, calm and clarity.
-A candle and lighter. You will use the candle to light or re-light your smudge stick during your ritual. This candle can be kept near by.
-You must have a fire proof bowl to fill with sand, this will be used to put out your smudge stick after your ritual.
-A feather or some type of fan to spread the smoke around your space.
Always remember that burning White Sage can be a fire hazard.
-Do not touch the smoking end of a smudge stick, it is hot and will burn you.
-Never dispose of the hot or warm ashes until completely cool.
-Always keep out of reach of children and pets
-Protect your surfaces such as furniture
-Never leave a smoking smudge stick unattended.
The sacred practice of burning sage is deeply rooted with cultural traditions of Native and Ethnic groups and always deserves respect and should always be done with intention and deep gratitude.
Go ahead and slightly open any windows in the home.
Whatever you have chosen to burn, light one end until it catches fire and let it burn until the flame goes out. Keep your smudge stick in your fire proof bowl.
You will begin at your front door and then begin to move around the home. Make sure to move mindfully, with care and intention. You will walk clockwise around the perimeter of the home or space. Allow the smoke to drift into every corner and hidden space, such as dark corners and closets. If you have stairs just go up or down them whenever you encounter them and continue walking clockwise, until you meet them again. You will return to the main floor.
Throughout your ritual, if you feel comfortable in doing so you can chant a mantra or prayer that you are connected to. This will deepen the spiritual connection to the ritual.
When you arrive back at the front door, you can recite your final prayer or mantra. Go ahead an visualize that your entire space or home is bright and filled with positive energy. Then extinguish your smudge stick into the sand in your fireproof bowl.
Remember there is no wrong time to smudge, if it feels right to you it is a perfect time.