According to feng shui, smudging can help better the energy flow in your home/office. Burning sage or smudging is considered to be a method that helps you cleanse the air in the space and feel better.
This practice is popular in feng shui and Native American traditions as a means for energy cleansing.
Valerie Oula, a certified Kundalini yoga and meditation teacher at MNDFL and the founder of Modern Ritual explains that sage has long been practiced for energy cleansing of people, objects, and spaces.
Similarly to brushing our teeth and showering to keep our physical bodies healthy, she believes the same is needed on an energy level.
Before we show you how to make your own smudge sticks, let’s check out some of the potential advantages of burning sage…
Potential Advantages of Smudging
- Decreases stress and induces calmness
According to proponents, burning sage helps release negative ions in the air and helps cleanse the air and induce positivity. To reap this benefit, it is best to burn it after a rather stressful day or in the morning so that the day can begin in a more relaxed and positive way.
- Improves the mood
When we are feeling down, doing something to take our focus away could make an important difference. This is where burning sage helps because it sets an intention, one that is positive and energizing. When you have a smudging practice, you can make it your stress reduction routine, same as it is a meditation session, a warm bath before bed or an afternoon cup of warm tea.
- Enhances the focus
Smudging may help enhance your concentrations and thoughts when you’re feeling confused.
How to Make Your Smudge Sticks & How to Smudge Properly
To make a smudge at home, the plants you will use depend on where you live and what plants you have access to. Some of the most common ones in the East are tobacco, sweet grass, juniper, cedar, cypress, sage, and pine needles whereas those from the West use desert sage, pinion, tobacco, and sweet grass.
To make a smudge stick, cut the branches and stems of the herbs you’ve chosen into similar length sizes. Remove yellow and spotted leaves. Since what you use to bind the bundle will also burn, opt for natural, non-toxic materials, for example, hemp string.
Thicker bundles burn slower so it is best to make them thick. Tie the knot around the stems and then wrap the string around the stems several times. Then, tie another knot to secure it.
Now, grasp the herbs with one hand and wind the string in an angle from the base up to the bundle’s tip. Use sufficient string to avert the leaves from falling out. Then, turn the bundle around and direct the string to the stems to make a criss-cross pattern.
Tie off and clip loose strings for a neat finish. Keep the bundle in a dry and dark area on a drying rack with proper air flow for seven to ten days. When they are entirely dried, you can start using them. In case you already chose dried herbs, this drying step is skipped.
When smudging, there is more than just lighting a stick and waving it through the space. Instead, do it with a purpose and intention.
It is important to focus on the enjoyment in the smell and how it resonates with you.
When you start smudging, set an intention and breathe deeply. Imagine the negative thoughts and feelings that bother you going away. Close off the windows and turn off any fans or the AC to prevent draft.