Smudging is using smoke, usually from Sage or other fragrant herbs, with historic sacred associations to clear objects, people, houses, crystals, the room, circles etc. Open doors or windows if possible when doing a house cleansing to allow the smoke to carry negative energies away.
The most common way this is done lately is based on Native American tradition. The dried herbal smudge bundle or loose herb is placed in a fire proof container, often an abalone shell (to represent the water element) and
lit, the smoke is fanned to spread it through the room, often using a large feather or feather fan, starting in the East and moving sun wise through the area in a complete circle is the way I was taught, but have seen it done
(I've Been told that Some Native American Traditions Consider using an abalone shell disrespectful, I was taught smudging by an elder member of a California Costanoan Tribe, her tradition does use abalone shells. )
When smudging yourself you might waft the smoke around your face saying something like "May I see only the truth, hear only the truth, speak only the truth." Smudge your heart and say, "May all my acts be of love." Smudge downward to the feet and say, "May I always walk the good path." One then makes a vow or wish for the purpose of the ceremony like, "May what we do here be in and of the highest good." or, "May we be brothers in spirit and dissolve conflicts", and passes the smudge bowl and feather to the next person. Sometimes a single person will smudge all the others rather than passing the bowl around..
One method of clearing crystals is to smudge them either holding them in the smoke or fanning the smoke over and around them . You might also like to smudge yourself and/ or the room before conducting a crystal healing treatment
Incense, and even burning epsom salts is in the smudge category. Some cultures throw the herbs into boiling water for steam or directly onto a fire. Some form of incensing or smudging is an almost universal energy purification method, and in fact many of the traditionally used herbs have antibiotic or other healing properties. Sage, sweet grass, lavender, thyme, sandalwood , and rosemary are some of the herbs most often used.
Sage is for cleansing and purification.
Lavander is for bringing beauty and balance.
Sweet Grass is for Blessings.
Cedar is for protection.
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