Smudging is a Native tradition of using herbs to purify the energy. Tied in bundles, the smudge sticks come in many sizes, as well as selection of herbs. Sage, cedar and sweetgrass are the most popular smudging herbs.
Smudging can sound a bit intimidating to many people. It can also look unsafe or too complicated to be practiced often. Rest assured this is not true. Smudging is not complicated, not hard and totally safe if you follow several very simple steps.
What is important to accept, though, is that smudging is an ancient and sacred ceremony, so it is best to do it with full awareness and in a slow, mindful manner.
As even the happiest homes accumulate in time negative vibrations, it is good to smudge your home thoroughly at least several times a year. You can also smudge your office space (not during busy office hours!); as well as use smudging to clear your own energy or the energy of other people.
I will give you simple instructions on how to do smudging, and then address the most common concerns with smudging a house. You will also find here instructions on how to smudge yourself (or somebody else), as well as various on-line sources for smudging supplies.
Supplies You Need for Smudging Your House:
- Smudge stick
- Candle & matches
- A fireproof container.
How To Smudge Your House:
1. Place the candle, the fireproof container and the smudge stick on a table, desk or any other appropriate surface. It is best if you create a sense of ceremony when you smudge your house, as well as find time when you will not be disturbed; 10-15 min should be enough.
2. Light the candle and say a prayer or just focus your energy. Light the tip of your smudge stick with a candle light, then gently wave the stick in the air till the tip begins to smoulder.
3. Hold the smudge stick over the fireproof container at all times in order to avoid any lit herbs falling on the floor. You can use a feather, if you have one, but usually just gently waving your hands to disperse the smoke is enough. Remind yourself to stay connected to your breathing throughout your smudging session.
4. Go clockwise around your house (usually starting at the front door), and gently wave the smoke into the air. Spend a bit more time smudging the room corners, as they tend to accumulate stagnant energy. Be sure to also open the closet doors and carefully smudge inside. Do not forget about spaces such as the laundry room, the garage or the basement.
5. When you have smudged all areas of your house, come back to where you started and gently extinguish your smudge stick (dipping it into sand while applying a bit of pressure usually works well). Wait a bit, then pack your smudge stick, as well as the container, till your next smudging session. You can leave the candle, if you so desire, to continue to purify the energy.
How To Smudge Yourself (or Somebody Else):
Once your smudge stick is lit and smouldering, direct the smoke waves to the overall energy field around your body, starting with the area above your head and continuing down to your feet. Do not forget to breathe deeply while you do that.
I have also seen smudging done more meticulously, as well as in the reverse order - starting with the soles of the feet, going up both sides of the legs, torso, arms and finishing by smudging the space above the head. See what works best for you.
The same steps apply when you are asked to smudge somebody else, be it a friend or a child. It is usually a good idea to smudge yourself before, as well as after you smudge the house.
Most Commonly Asked Questions About Smudging:
Q: Do I really need to smudge my house?
A: Yes, it is always a good idea to smudge your house, as stagnant energy accumulates even in the homes with best feng shui. If smudging does not appeal to you at all, explore alternative ways to clear the energy.
Q: How often do I have to smudge?
A: At least several times a year. Some people smudge every week, while others might smudge less. Remember you can choose alternative ways to clear the energy, such as basic space clearing, using incense, etc. However, do give smudging a try, you might love it!
Q: Can I make my own smudge stick?
A: Yes, absolutely! The herbs most commonly used in a smudge stick are: sage, cedar, sweetgrass and lavender. I often make my own little bundle with sage and lavender, and it works very well. You might choose to use a colourful string to hold the herbs together.