Rachel Welch is Carbon38’s resident New Age devotee, with interests in healing crystals, the zodiac, and today’s topic: Smudging!
In a world with ever increasing deadlines and some horrible new catastrophe on the news each day, it can be hard to find peace in our everyday lives. We are constantly glued to our smartphones and computer screens, so when it comes time to sleep we often find ourselves in the throes of insomnia. How do we let go of all the stuff that has happened during our day and sail off into dreamland?
Go smudge yourself!
Smudging is a great way to release any negativity or stress from your day. We pick up so many things throughout our day without even realizing it. By the time we get home we are still carrying the energy of the fight we had with our spouse, the criticism we were given at work, or the horrible traffic we sat in on the way home. It’s no wonder we have trouble sleeping! We have the energy of these situations draining us, even though we are no longer in them. There’s nothing better than a little sage smoke to give us back our sanity.
What is Smudging?
Smudging is the act of using the smoke of a dried herb (usually white sage) to cleanse your energy field. It comes to us from a Native American tradition and has been gaining popularity in recent years. You can often find dried sage bundles at a local health food store or Whole Foods. They can come in an array of sizes, so if you’re a beginner I recommend starting with a small bundle. You will also need a heatproof dish or an abalone shell. I prefer the latter because it adds an element of beauty to your smudge set.
To begin the smudging process you will need to light the end of the sage bundle. Allow the sage to burn for a couple of seconds before blowing it out, just as you would with an incense stick. There should be glowing embers and the bundle should be giving off a nice smoke. It doesn’t need to be overly smoky, a light smoke will do the trick and not set off the fire alarms. Place the bundle on the heatproof dish to catch any ashes. You can use your hand to waft the smoke all around you. I liked to start with my head, then move to the chest and go down each arm. Make sure to always smudge your hands by wafting them through the sage smoke. Your hands do much of the work throughout the day and hold a lot of energy. Continue to move down the body, carefully wafting the smoke over your body. Be sure to smudge the bottom of your feet as they hold a lot of energy as well. Don’t forget to Sage your back as well!
Think of the sage smoke as an energetic shower. You want to make sure your whole body gets clean. It doesn’t to be overly thorough, so don’t stress if you don’t get every inch of yourself smudged. You can also add a prayer to the smudging process. Something like “Please allow this smoke to cleanse me of all negativity. May anything that no longer serves me be cleared for my greatest and highest good.” You can also visualize the smoke ridding you of any negativity or dirty energy you may have picked up during the day. I find that when I say a prayer and visualize the negativity leaving my body while I’m smudging, it feels more effective and I feel a much more relaxed afterwards. You can smudge your home as well! This is great to do after arguments, or when you’re moving into a new place. It cleanses the energy of the space and returns it to a more positive atmosphere.
After you are done smudging you will want to put out the bundle. You can use the side of your abalone shell or your heatproof dish to put out any lit embers. Be gentle with the sage as it can break, and you don’t want to damage your bundle! You can keep your bundle in the abalone shell or on the heatproof dish until its next use. Happy smudging!