Smudging For Beginners: Ditch The Incense and Purify Naturally Instead

If you're here, you probably looked up the term "smudging". What in the world is smudging? Well, it's as simple as cleansing or purifying the air around you. You can cleanse the air just as you would cleanse your face, only the process looks a little different. A smudging ceremony using smudging herbs is all it takes to feel brand new.

What is Smudging?

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"Smudging (is) a way to energetically cleanse a space to invite positive energy. When smudging a space, you burn plant material. The smoke fills and purifies the environment," The Spruce says. When you burn sage, palo santo, eucalyptus, mugwort, or other herbs, that's smudging. It's using different plant materials previously known as sacred herbs to cleanse your space of negative energy, and start new.

Can you make or buy smudge?

Both! You can make your own smudge sticks at home or buy them at spiritual stores or online. If you choose to DIY, you'll need a bit of patience. First, you need to gather the materials. You'll need smudging herbs, thread, a candle, an empty small bowl (or abalone shell if you're feeling fancy), and a bowl of sand. The candle is for lighting your herbs. The empty bowl is to hold under the herbs to catch ashes. Lastly, the bowl of sand is to put the smudge out.

First, you'll cut the thread to 4 times the length of your herb bundle, and then tie one end at the bottom. Then you can work your way up, tightening the herbs together, and then back down to tie back at the original spot.

You'll then need to dry the herbs for 3 weeks by hanging them upside down in a sunny spot.

What kind of herbs are there?

Sage bundles with white sage (or salvia) are the most popular smudging sticks. "It is associated with purity and has a strong and heavy presence," The Spruce added. But there are plenty of others you can try, especially if you enjoy the different herb smells. This is a lot like aromatherapy and essential oils, but way more natural.

Other herbs you can use:

Black sage

?Desert Sage

?California White Sage

Cedar

Rosemary

Sweetgrass

?Frankincense

?Juniper

Myrrh

Bayberry

Rose Petals

Copal

Frankincense Resin

Lavender

How do you smudge?

If you're looking to bring some good spirits into your space, you need to not only own a smudge bundle, but know how to properly perform a smudging ceremony.

You'll start by lighting your sage smudge stick at the front door. Then you'll make your way through the house going clockwise direction. You don't necessarily need to go into all the nooks and closets, but let the sacred smoke drift that way. "Moving around a space like this is called "circumambulation". It's a practice that's been done for centuries in ancient cultures to make a space more sacred. And, if it feels okay to you, it's helpful to chant a mantra or a prayer that you're connected to," The Spruce said.

That's really all it takes to create a sacred space. It's a new dawn and it's a new age for you. Disclaimer: If you live in a connected apartment or townhome, you might want to let your neighbors know what you're doing so they don't call the fire department on you. That might ruin the good vibes a bit.

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