1 hour ago
The burning of sacred herbs, stems, and leaves - or smudging, is a ritual practice that can be traced back through many disparate cultures, over thousands of years. The idea is that the smoke is purifying by capturing the 'bad energy' and then ascending it to the heavens. Sage is perhaps most popularly used for this practice but one must keep in mind that sage AND palo santo have been severely overharvested due to recent popularity and other herbs should be adopted for personal ritual use. Bay leaves, mugwort, and yerba buena are good alternatives to adopt.
As an empath and intuitive, smudging regularly is essential. Given that I not only touch people's faces for a living but also have a prolonged connection to them, I am easily susceptible to absorbing negative energy that is not mine to carry. So, every night when I get home, I perform a ritual cleansing of my aura and ask that any energy that means me harm or isn't mine to carry is released into the air and blown out of a window or door. Protection is the key to any lasting spiritual practice.
If you have recently been around a person who is ill, depressed, fearful, angry, or mentally ill, smudging can be incredibly potent. When performing a personal clearing, make sure to fully light the herbs so you get a good smoke. Shake the wand around the nearby area so that any stagnant energy can prepare to move. Deeply breathe in the essence of the sacred smoke herbs, and focus on yourself and your body for a moment. Circle the wand around your head a few times, and slowly trace the outline of your body as you bend and allow the smoke down as far as possible, to your ankles and feet. Move the smoke from that position near the floor and slowly return up the length of your body to the top of your head. Once complete, move the energy from your space by whatever method you prefer. Some like to sweep the energy out of the house. I prefer to turn on a fan and imagine every lingering piece of negative energy flying out the window.