Smudging is the common name given to the sacred smoke bowl blessing. How and why smudge your home and office? Because smudging – wafting the smoke from a smoldering bundle of sage – is a ritual for removing not so favorable energies (vibrations) from an area.
The term “smudging” is derived from a North American Native tradition. However, the ritual itself is ancient and found in many cultures around the world from China, India, and Southeast Asia, to Europe and the Western hemisphere. Many civilizations have used the tradition of driving animals through smoke to kill off pests and diseases. Even though other cultures use different herbs and resins, the process is the same: purification through smoke.
Modern societies still practice the art, saying that it restores balance to an environment. Practitioners of Feng Shui believe smudging to be one of the most basic of necessities for bringing calm energy into the home or workplace. Realtors, too, are finding that difficult-to-sell homes are easier to sell after they’ve been smudged.
Have you ever entered a room where an argument had just taken place, only to feel an air of instability, of anxiousness? Smudge that room and feel the energy change almost immediately. Try it, it works! Is it the placebo effect again? I hardly think so, since I use smudge regularly and visitors are always commenting on how friendly and happy my home feels.
Marcella Zinner, named one of America’s top intuitive counselors, presently studying for a PhD in Transpersonal Psychology and Theology at Holos University under Dr. Norm Shealy, has written these clear instructions on how and why to smudge your home and office:
How to Smudge
- An abalone shell is the accustomed Native American vessel to use for holding the sage. However, any small, flat, heat-proof container will do.
- Leave the sage as is, tied with the string in the bundle. Light the sage and let it flame for a minute or so. Extinguish the flame so the sage is smoldering and smoking.
- Take the smudge container and using circular clockwise movements, encircle yourself with the smoke. The Native American custom is to use a very large feather from a poultry bird, such as a turkey. Using the feather, fan the smoke all around the room going around windows and doorways. I always say a prayer as I do this asking for all negativity be released, opening up for all that is good and holy. If possible, open some windows and doors to allow the smoke to leave.
- You can do this for the whole room and even the whole house. Start at the most northerly room and working again, clockwise, through your home, let the smoke from the sage permeate throughout. Try and finish off the smudging process by ending up at an open door. You should have come full circle around your home.
A note of interest. Whenever I have done this, it has never set off any of my smoke alarms, which I have found very strange indeed. Now it MAY set off yours, so be prepared to disconnect it during your smudging and be SURE to re-engage it upon completion of your smudging.
Yes, you may try this at home. Different grades of sage are available at your local organic market, metaphysical bookstore. An excellent quality, sweet smelling Mt Shasta sage is available here.
Reverend Zinner also says that when beginning to smudge your home you may find yourself feeling agitated or uneasy and not sure why. This is common. But push yourself to try it and then notice how different the room feels afterward. Better yet, begin to notice how the behavior’s of those around you change, become calmer and more secure.