What does Smudging mean?
Smudging is an ancient traditional ceremony many cultures, specifically indigenous people have practiced over centuries to clear negative, unwanted energy, welcome positive energy and peace as well as heal ailments, rid the air of bacteria and provide spiritual guidance through reflection and clarity in addition to many other benefits.
The properties of sage help to cleanse and clear your environment and even yourself and those around you of negative energy that can be stagnant, stale and energy draining.
While sage, especially white sage clears this bad energy - the space is often left empty.
In order to bring your smudging session full circle, burning a floral or sweet element at the same time or immediately after will then replace this energy with positive, calming and relaxing energy.
Some of our favorite elements to add to our sage sticks items are lavender, sweet grass, rose petals and other varieties of dried flowers, herbs and healing elements like palo santo and cedar.
Many of the Elle James smudge sticks are combinations, so as you clear out the negative energy,
you immediately replace it with positive energy.
While burning your smudge stick, speaking and thinking positive and purposeful intentions will help to empower your ceremony and create the environment you truly desire in your home.
In high enough concentrations, burning sage will eliminate negative ions and can clear the air of mold spores, pollen, pet dander, odors, cigarette smoke, bacteria, viruses, dust and other hazardous airborne particles.
What does Smudging actually mean?
Smudging is the name given to the ceremonial act of cleansing and purification which uses a selection of herbs, often varieties of sage, which are bundled together with string to form a smudge stick before being ignited.
Smudging in your space, your home, office, store or even your body with herbal clearing items is like taking an energetic shower, or doing a deep metaphysical cleansing to
put you back into a state of balance, peace and harmony.
Our homes, objects and bodies do not consist of purely physical matter; they also vibrate with subtle, invisible energy. Cleansing a space or our bodies with techniques such as smudging clears away all the emotional and psychic “garbage” that may have gathered, perhaps over hundreds of years. It’s like spiritual spring-cleaning.
The smoke from dried sage actually changes the ionic composition of the air, and can have a
direct effect on reducing our stress response.
Burning sage purifies and cleanses your environment.
Burn sage in your living space on a weekly basis if possible. You’ll begin to notice a lightness of energy and calmness in your home from this practice. Incorporating sage smudge sticks into your cleaning routine is a great way to cleanse the old energy from the previous week, and welcome in the newly beginning week and all the possibilities it holds!
Sage is an effective natural disinfectant, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and antiseptic just to name a few. In many ancient cultures, sage sticks were used ceremonially to cleanse the air, increase oxygen levels, rid the home of negative energy, balance emotions and promote strong health.
How to Smudge:
Just before you begin, open windows or a door for ventilation.
Be sure to have a fireproof dish, clay tray or a traditionally used abalone shell to catch falling embers and to rest your smudge stick after use.
Light it with the matches or a lighter, and then gently blow out the flame, allowing the smudge stick to smolder similar to incense. Focus your energy on the smoke. If a flame appears, shake the bundle slightly, or blow on it until it turns to embers and smoke.
You may need to re-light the bundle a few times during the smudging process. Some herbs burn slower than others, like cedar, pine and rosemary. Try not to get discouraged and use a candle flame to repeatedly ignite if necessary.
Once you have a good amount of smoke going, use your hand or a feather to direct it over your body, moving from your feet all the way up to your head and back again, staying connected to your breathing throughout the session. You may also want to visualize the smoke removing negative energy from your life and home. If you feel comfortable with it, you can also repeat the following incantation: “Air, fire, water, earth. Cleanse, dismiss, dispel.”
Smudging Spray or clearing spray is a nice alternative to burning sage. Its great for cleansing your own energy on the go, or in smoke free environments. Its great for travel (if flying, the 2oz. bottle specifically) clearing the energy around you before you enter your home or office and to give as gifts to those not ready to burn the herb just yet. The spray will bring calm, positive energy and clarity, however it will not be as strong as burning the sacred herb.
Palo Santo is a spiritual tree that grows on the coast of South America and is related to Frankincense, Myrrh and Copal. In Spanish, the name literally means “Holy Wood”.
It is part of the citrus family and has sweet notes of pine, mint and lemon.
Palo Santo also clears negative energy and brings positive energy, creativity and good fortune. This is one of our favorite things to burn in the morning as we start our day and in the evening as we prepare to calm our mind and have a restful sleep.
Quartz Crystal Points
These natural stones are used to bring clarity and positive energy into your environment. Often classified as a universal healer, it links to all the chakras to provide balance and harmony. Its ability to be programmed for manifestation is unlike any other crystal.
Quartz crystal is said to help manifest your intentions.
The most important health benefits of lavender includes its ability to relieve stress, improve mood, and promote restful sleep. It restores balance and creates a peaceful atmosphere.
Lavender also attracts loving energy and spirits.
It is traditional to use a bird's feather to brush the smoke over the person or object being blessed. It is important to use the underside of the feather to wash the smoke over the object of blessing. It is the underside of the bird and its wings that face the Mother Earth as it flies and it is this surface of the feather that offers the blessing medicine of the bird.
If your a person that thinks smudging is not necessary or just some kind of “hoop-lah”
with no science to back it up, think again!
Research published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology entitled Medicinal Smokes in 2006
found that burning smudge sticks has the ability to cleanse the surrounding air
of harmful bacteria.
The authors reported: “The most frequent medical indications for medicinal smoke are pulmonary (23.5%), neurological (21.8%) and dermatological (8.1%).
A very large list of pathogenic bacteria was shown to be absent in an open room after a remarkable 30 days following treatment, leading the authors to conclude, “We have demonstrated that by using medicinal smoke it is possible to completely eliminate diverse plant and human pathogenic bacteria of the air within confined space.”
Additional articles about the benefits of Smudging:
The Oprah Magazine:
Very Well Mind:
Always use caution. Keep out of children’s reach.
Some information included in this reference guide was found at the following websites: