Want to fill your home with good vibes? Follow our beginner’s guide to smudging, where we walk you through the ancient ritual of sage and Palo Santo burning…
Smudging with sage: How to get rid of negative energy
What is smudging?
Smudging, the ritual of burning herbs, is a spiritual practice that has been used for centuries. It is most commonly associated with Native American traditions and was used during ceremonies to ward off evil spirits. More recently, it has gained popularity in the wellness world as a way to cleanse a space (office, bedroom etc) of negative energy.
Are there any health benefits?
Studies have shown smudging helps to clear air of bacteria such as mold, dust and other germs. Additionally, it can help ease issues such as anxiety, insomnia and depression as burning medicinal herbs is said to release negative ions that can boost your mood.
What to buy?
Sage comes from the Latin word ‘salvia’ which translates as ‘to heal’. It is usually harvested from southwestern parts of the United States and is the most popular herb to use for smudging as it “clears all energy” (the good and the bad), says Sasha Sabapathy founder of Glowbar. It is dried and crafted into bundles to create smudge sticks and has a pungent smell when burned.
Palo Santo, often referred to as holy wood, is a type of wood that is found in Peru and is said to cleanse negative energy. It comes in sticks and has a sweeter more subtle fragrance. Sasha recommends using sage and Palo Santo in tandem for “maximum benefits”.
Abalone shells are often used in smudging rituals as a bowl to catch the hot cinders. Including them in a ceremony means you are incorporating all four of the earth’s elements: the shells represent water as it comes from the sea, the unlit smudge stick/sage represents earth, once lit they represent fire and the smoke represents air.
How to smudge?
“To smudge you should open some windows and doors to encourage airflow around your house,” explains Sasha. “Light your white sage or Palo Santo making sure you have a smudge bowl like your Abalone shell and set an intention before smudging. This can be as simple as ‘I want to clear the space of any negativity’.
“Walk around the space in a clockwise motion, using your hands gently wave the stick around to create a light flow of smoke. Some people like to smudge daily. However, weekly or monthly or however often you feel is perfectly right too.”
Main image: Shutterstock
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