Many people have come into contact with the powerful white sage plant; a wise and strong spirited plant that can bring healing, cleansing, and purification. Ancient Native Americans connected with sage in a deeper sense which has since garnered its place in Native American Medicine and culture as a whole, remaining as a vital part of many of their rituals to this day.
Sage stems from the Latin word “salvia” meaning “to heal,” a quality inherent in sage; evident in the way it is used to purify energies. Native Americans believe that sage is a strong spirit plant put on this earth as a healing medicine. Burning sage while requesting Spirit to aid them in whatever form of cleansing is taking place has been part of Native American tradition for centuries. This ritual is known as “Smudging”.
Sage Smudging is a process not only done using sage. Other herbs like sweetgrass, cedar, and yerba santa are also commonly used in this practice. However, sage is most commonly used as it is believed to be the most effective for cleansing. Burning sage is used in clearing sacred spaces, removing malevolent spirits and negative energies while also effectively acting as a spiritual or energy protection. In theory, the sage’s sacred smoke attaches to the negative energy and lifts it, releasing it into a safe space where it is recycled into positive energy.
What are the Benefits of Burning Sage or Smudging?
Burning sage in a room effectively clears negative energies. Smudging with sage is known to have a clarifying and healing effect on one’s own spirit as well. Often times, people immediately feel a sense of being returned to a balanced state after a smudging ritual.
General Guidelines for Burning Sage:
- Make sure that your purpose for sage smudging is clear and concrete in your mind. For example: let peace, love, and happiness fill this room/yourself.
- If sage smudging your home, know which room in your home needs to be cleared. It is said that if you are not certain which part of your home to cleanse, light up your smudging stick and let the trail of smoke guide you.
- Have a heavy earthenware fire-safe pot with you or a large tiger paw or abalone shell to safely hold your burning sage.
- You may opt to use incense immediately following a smudging ritual. Sage incense has a very masculine/yang scent and is complemented very nicely by a feminine/yin incense. You may generally use any incense you have however, our personal favorites are Jasmine and Rose. However, you should consider burning Sweetgrass after sage smudging. While Sage is used to clear negative energy from a space, Sweetgrass is used to entice positive energy with its beautiful sweet and earthy scent.
Smudging Your Home/Room:
- Begin by opening all windows and doors to allow air to move freely. Always smudge with care. A breeze from an open window or fan may catch loose burning sage; the smudge stick may drop some burning ash so using a fire-safe pot or shell is recommended.
- Take your sage smudging stick and light it until smoke starts to rise, holding the fire-safe pot or shell underneath.
- With your sage smudging stick in your dominant hand, start from the beginning of your room--the entrance, and carefully go around the room clockwise until you reach where you’ve started. Concentrate on the areas with the most traffic such as doorways, hallways, and windows or wherever energy flows in and out most of the time allowing the smoke to flow through every nook and cranny of the room/area.
- You will know when you are done if the smoke rises in the same direction. However, if the smoke is still scattered, go through the room, this time, in a counterclockwise direction. Then, go through the room clockwise once more if it still hasn’t cleared--go on until you’ve been given the clear sign to move on to the next location.
Sage Smudging Yourself or Other People:
- Once again, start with clear, concrete intentions and fervent prayers.
- Light the sage stick until it smokes and position yourself in front of a fan or have a feather on hand to direct the smoke.
- Allow the smoke to gently waft over your body starting from the crown of your head to the tips of your toes. Make sure to cover as much as you can, including the back side.
- Inhale a very small amount of smoke and breathe it in deeply allowing it to seep in.
- Once finished, Make sure the bundle is extinguished completely.
There is a myriad of benefits sage can bring to your home, office, family or even yourself. If you were wondering where to buy sage for cleansing, we have a wonderful selection of sage products to suit your every need.