Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The ancient art of burning sage

People often ask me in the shop what the sage smudges are used for and how to use them, so I thought I'd offer a bit of the interesting history and uses of ritual sage.

The ritual burning of herbs and herbal resins is common to many cultures in the world. From the rich frankincense of the Church and the Middle East, to the incenses of Asia, to the raw energy of brush burning in many native cultures—the purification of space through this modality is a global phenomenon and one you can benefit from highly. 

Burning sage is one of the oldest and purest methods of cleansing a person, group of people or space. While Native American sage burning is the most commonly recognized form of it today, it has nevertheless been a shared practice in other cultures too. 

From the ancient Celtic druids who used sage as a sacred herb alongside Oak Moss for burning as well as medicinal purposes, to the Indigenous Peoples of the Amazon whose ‘Palo Santo’ (sacred wood) sage burning ceremonies are still practiced to this day.

Sage burning cleansing rituals can be as elaborate or as simple as you want them to be, but it’s of the highest importance that your intention be clear before you begin. If you are burning sage to purify a space, or a person (even yourself) then this needs to be clearly planted in your mind before you even the light the sage, and while taking the smoke around a home, or through a space.

 Slowly walk around where you are and take the smoke to each area you would like to cleanse. Concentrate on gateway areas, such as windows, doors, closets, as well as hallways. Also concentrate on the corners of a room. Most importantly, use your intuition. If you allow it, your space will usually inform you as to which areas need to be cleansed the most.

Here at Old Hollywood we offer several different types of sage depending on how much you need as well as the scent you prefer. We have Green, Dragonsblood, Juniper and White sage smudge sticks for only $5. We also offer a 3 pack of different types of sage for $12 as well as a large Yerba sage stick for $10.