Earth element unlit, fire element when lit, air element when smoke produced
This beautifully aromatic and sacred wood (the literal translation from Spanish) hails from South America. Burning Palo Santo releases a pleasing woody scent peppered with citrus and minty notes. Clinical studies on the benefits of Palo Santo are limited, however traditionally it is used for energy purification as well as to soothe cold and flu symptoms and help heal emotional pain.
A feather represents the spirit of air. In Native American tradition many types of feathers are considered sacred. When using a feather for smudging it is used to fan the smoke to desired areas.
The abalone shell serves as a ritual-worthy smudging bowl. It is used to hold the sage or Palo Santo stick, catch the embers and ash and can be used to stub out the burning stick at the end of the ritual. Placing a layer of sand inside the bowl will help maintain the mother-of-pearl finish and keep it free from scorch marks.
How to perform a smudging ritual
The ritual here only serves as a suggestion to help you create your own ritual. I am not Native American so I incorporate my own personal differences into my ritual which makes it more authentic to me. Feel free to do the same for your own ritual.
Before commencing the ritual:
- Open the doors and windows of the space you are about the smudge
- Wash your hands and try to clear your mind from any thoughts not related to the work you are about to perform
- Be clear on what your intention is with this smudging ritual
- Gather your smudging tools together
Starting the ritual:
- Light your White Sage or Palo Santo stick (tip: let it burn for around 30 seconds before blowing it out)
- Say a prayer for the work you are about to do and ask for the cleansing and purification of this space.
- Pass the smudging stick around your aura to clear your own energetic body
- Start at the eastern most corner of the room and go clockwise
- Move around the space with your lit smudging stick making sure the smoke reaches every nook and cranny and corner of your space. Use a feather to help fan the smoke to where you want it to go
- As you move around the space keep the prayer you had spoken in the midst of your mind.
Ending the ritual
Once you have covered the room, stub the smudging stick out on the abalone shell and give a prayer of thanks that purification of this space has been achieved
When to Smudge:
About to meditate? SMUDGE
Recovering from an illness? SMUDGE
Had an argument with someone in your home? SMUDGE
Held a party that got loose? SMUDGE
Something feels off in a room? SMUDGE
Working in your sacred space? SMUDGE
Just moved in to a new place? SMUDGE
In essence, if there’s bad vibes or a bad memory attached to a space SMUDGE, or if you want to clear existing energy so you can bring in your higher energy SMUDGE.
Word of Caution
As always when dealing with fire be careful! Keep water handy just in case. Watch for falling embers and make sure that your smudging stick is completely out before you leave it out of sight.
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