Cleansing Your Space: Everything You Need to Know About Smudging
Smudging is an ancient and sacred practice that can be traced back to ancient Egypt and Smudging has been common among Native American tribes for over 2,000 years to not only cleanse negative energy but negative spirits as well. Many different religions and other spiritual followings now practice similar smudging rituals as well.
Smudging is primarily used to cleanse a physical space, but you can also smudge your own aura, or another person if needed. If you’ve gone through something emotionally difficult or spiritually troubling, smudging can help clear your own spiritual center and give you the space to heal.
You’ve probably heard of burning sage in a new home to clear out old energy and make way for the new energy, but it’s so much more than that. Even happy homes can accumulate negative vibrations, just like people, need positive clearing every once in a while.
So here’s how to start your cleansing.
10 things you need to know when smudging:
Prepare your space
Take a few minutes to clear any clutter in the space you wish to smudge. Just like your yoga or meditation practice, having a clean and clear area will help your mind focus and make the practice more effective.
A smudge stick
A smudge stick is a tied bundle of dried herbs used to smudge a space. The traditional blend of sage, lavender, and cedar work well for general cleansing, but there are many resources on what plants to burn for different intentions.
- Open windows to give negative energy an escape route.
- A large seashell or small wooden bowl to hold your smoldering dried herbs are the traditional vessels used during a smudging ritual, but any burn-proof container will work.
- Light the stick and once it catches fire, blow it out. It will gently smoke like incense. Keep the bowl underneath your smudge stick to catch any burning embers that may fall. If you’re using loose herbs, place them in the bowl and light them, allowing the herbs to burn until they create smoke. Remember, the smoke is the key part of our smudging ritual, so take your time with this step.
- Set your intentions for each room. Perhaps you want to bless it. have a clear vision of the energy you want to create for your space. Take a moment to set your intention with a few deep breaths. On your inhale, focus on what you’re bringing into your environment, and on your exhale focus on everything you want to leave behind. release a memory, or fill the space with a new, more loving energy. You can’t mess this part up as long as you allow yourself to ask the universe for what you need.
- Walk around the room and wave the stick counter clock along walls, corners, the ceiling and behind doors, all the while staying mindful of your intention. While you slowly make your way around, repeat your intention and allow the smoke to clear the energy. Really embody the ritual and connect to the positive energy to fill the space. Feel free to sit for a moment and meditate on the new energy and intention for space. When you’ve finished smudging, gently stamp out the smudge stick in the bowl to be sure nothing is still burning.
It gives you time to yourself
While smudging does not need to take all day, it is important to allow yourself the time and space to fully be present during your ritual. 10-15 minutes of uninterrupted alone time is enough for you to get the most from your smudging. The cleaning and clearing of energy will need your full attention and commitment in order to reap the many benefits.
You should also smudge yourself. This can be incredibly powerful, especially when you want to stay in a positive vibration. I close my eyes and silently set my intentions. Whatever your soul needs, now are the time to give it up.
I think smudging should kick off every day, as a way to pause, reflect. Smudging is a quick and easy way to give yourself and your space an energetic boost.
Reflect, Reflect and Reflect
One last but important step of smudging is a reflection. Take another moment to pause, breathe in gratitude and let go of anything no longer serving you. A great way to seal in the ritual is with a prayer or affirmation if you are comfortable with either. The important part of reflection is allowing your new energy and intention to settle before you rush back into the rest of your day. Sage as often as you like. It is great to smudge at the change of all seasons, before guests come to visit, after a breakup, before starting a new job or school, or anytime you’re feeling emotionally stuck. Smudging helps you connect with ancient magic and wisdom and deepens your spiritual self. Be open to the possibilities, let your soul relax and enjoy the renewed feeling of your purified and balanced space.