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How To Smudge

Whenever you feel the need to cleanse or purify yourself, a room, an object (ie. Crystal) or another person, you can perform a smudging ritual. Smudging is a Native American ritual used in purification ceremonies to cleanse and balance the aura or energies of people, places and objects. To smudge, light a smudge stick/palo santo wood, or a bundle of dried sage leaves. The lit sage bundle produces a cloud of fragrant smoke that you can waft around a person or place that needs spiritual cleansing.

Before you begin Smudging:
• Cautions:
- Make sure the area you are smudging is well ventilated by opening of all windows and doors for negative energy to “escape”.
- Do not use near infants or very young children; people with respiratory problems such as or asthma, or pregnant women. - Never leave burning smudge unattended. - Place some sand or soil in the bottom of the container to provide insulation as otherwise the container could scorch a surface it is placed upon.

• Preparations:
- Clean the area to be smudged. Remove unnecessary clutter that creates energy blockages. Vacuum and dust if possible. Begin Smudging:

• Focus on your intent:
Any action, undertaken with intention and belief can become a potent ritual. Consider your intention before you smudge and hold it clearly in your mind. - For example: “All lower energies be cleansed away from the space and may this space be filled up with pure love and light energy from the Universe”

A candle flame is recommended to light the sage leaves as it may take a little time to get the sage leaves smoking. Once there's a flame, put it out so that the sage is smoldering, not burning. Put out the fire by waving the sage with your hand. Allow the smudge sage leaves to smolder, freeing the smoke to circle in the air.

• Smudging yourself
Fan the swirls of smoke around your body from head to toe with your hands or feather. You may want to especially focus on chakra areas where you feel there are blockages. Visualize the smoke lifting away all the negative thoughts, emotions and energies that have attached to you. If you are feeling depressed for instance you could visualize the smoke carrying away all your feelings of depression.

• Smudging another
Smudge as if you were smudging yourself, fanning the smoke all over their body. You may want to hold a positive intention for the smudging as you do it. For instance, "Allow the sacred smoke to cleanse your body and bring you present and available into this moment"

• Smudging a room or space
For cleansing a house, first offer smoke to the four directions outside the house, starting with the east, then south, west and ending with the north. Beginning with the lowest level of your house, and moving upward, light the smudge and walk about the perimeter, giving special attention to the corners and the places behind doors. You can also fan the smoke throughout the room with a large feather. Repeat the following either out loud, or in your mind: I break up and release all negative and stagnant energy in this place. May peace, light and divine love protect us and be ever present.

• Cleansing objects ie crystal jewelleries
Hold the objects to be purified in the smoke or fan the smoke over them. If you are clearing your crystal jewelleries, hold a positive intention of clearing away all unwanted energies from the crystal and may it be infused with pure love and light energy from the Universe.

Extinguishing the smudge
Get ready a ceramic/glass dish to put the smudge in when you've finished. It's ideal to damp the sage leaves out in sand or you can just press it against the bottom of the dish. Always make sure that a smoldering smudge sage is out before leaving the room where you keep it.

How often should I smudge?
At least at the beginning of every season. You can smudge once a day if you like, and is recommended daily for health practitioner.