In accordance with many ancient ways of knowing, all plants have a sacred spirit which surpasses all physical constituents and vibrates much deeper. This is what led to their broad use in healing (physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual), personal exploration, religious ceremonies, altering or shifting consciousness, and community-building.
The use of plants for these purposes is relatively old idea and has been practiced for millennia to maintain relationship with the Earth and the spirit world.
Smudging (burning of plants) has become all the rage and for a very good reason. As explained by Jane Alexander in her book The Smudging and Blessings Books, smudging is capable of:
- Reducing stress
- Invigorating sleep, allowing you do get into the world of sweet dreams
- Helping you wake energized, confident, and hopeful
- Helping you move on and leave old relationships behind
- Helping you feel more centered and protected from the world
- Clearing away negative energy in a space
By many cultures and religions the smoke of burning plants is believed to carry prayers to the heavens. Smudging involves burning of herbs which are braided, loose, or bundled. Regardless of whether they are braided, bundled, or loose, the procedure is pretty much the same: smoke is fanned across the body or around a space.
WHAT PLANTS ARE AVAILABLE FOR USE IN THE MAKING OF SMUDGE STICKS?
Some of the plants used in the making of smudge sticks include:
- Yarrow: Eliminates toxins from the body
- Lemon balm: Spiritual cleansing + calm
- Sage: Clears negative energy
- Sagebrush: Treats headaches, colds, and wounds
- Cedar leaf: Purification + cleansing
- Pine needles: Purification + cleansing
- Balsam fir: Purification + cleansing
- Rose petals: Calming + meditation+ attracts love
- Lavender: Calming
- Rosemary: Protection
- Peppermint: Protection+ healing
- Mullein: Cleansing+ healing
- Dessert chaparral: Cleansing+ protecting+ calming
- Juniper: Cleansing+ purification
- Mugwort: Lucid dreaming+ calming+ purification
- Sweetgrass: Healing+ purification+ cleansing
- Holy basil: Purification + calming
HOW TO MAKE SMUDGE STICKS
– Cut the branches of the plant into 7-10 inch lengths
– Measure a piece of thin cord (cotton or hemp), 4 times the length of the branches
– Wrap up the branches together
– Wrap the cord around the base of the bundle
– Then, wrap the cord around the bundle
– Once you reach the end, work your way toward the base
– Tie the ends of the cord at the base
– Remove the edges (optional)
HOW TO SMUDGE
Light the top of the stick with a lighter. Once the stick has a solid flame, blow it out so it is smoking. Fan the smoke over the space with the help of a feather. Make sure you put a bowl under the smudge stick to prevent any ash from falling on the carpet.
It is recommended to grow your own herbs to be used for this purpose, but in case this is not an option for you, feel free to buy smudge sticks. For instance, Mountain Rose Herb is a herbal distribution retailer which offers a wide range of lovely burnables!
Note: The results will not be the same for everyone and this is not a cure-all by no means. Prior using any herbal remedy, consulting a medical profession is a must!