Smudging, cleansing, clearing. Most people have heard of these terms and maybe even know what they are. I’m going to explain what this is, why it works, how to do it, and even how to include your kiddos in on it too!
Smudging is the act of cleansing a space, object or person of negative and unwanted energies.
How does it work?
There are a couple ways smudging works. It works by the person performing the smudging using their intention and their own positive energy to remove the negative and heavy energy. But it also literally works to remove gross stuff in the air. Studies have shown that smudging (burning certain herbs) literally kills various germs and bacteria. It also releases negative ions into the air which makes the air feel lighter and people feel happier. Negative ions are found in forests, near waterfalls and beaches, for example. Things like our electronics pump positive ions in the air which can make us feel bad, down, heavy and even cause headaches. You can read about the science and history of smudging here and here.
How do I smudge?
You can use a stick of palo santo or a smudge stick (which is a bundle of herbs, usually cedar or sage). Light the stick and then blow it out so its embers are still burning, like when you light a stick of incense. A lot of people like to then set the stick into a large shell or a bowl, to catch the ashes as they fall. You then use either a feather wand or even a piece of paper or your hand, to waft the smoke around. When cleansing a room, you want to make sure the smoke gets into the corners of the room and even the closets. When cleansing a person or object, make sure the smoke reaches the entire being.
You should also have a window open for the negative energy to exit through. If smudging a person or object, you could even do it outside.
Obviously, please be careful of fires and be smart about it. If smudging a person, be sure to not get the smoke directly in their eyes and be cautious if the person has asthma or some other breathing difficulties.
When smudging, it really helps to have your intention and mind set on cleansing. Don’t just walk around aimlessly with the smoke. Really envision the smoke cleansing the space. A lot of people also like to say little prayers or mantras as they smudge.
I’m all about including my kids into my spiritual practice when I can. I think it’s important for them to experience things like this. I’ve also found that kids are generally pretty curious and excited about these kinds of things. Folk magic, holistic healing and spirituality are in our blood, our heritage.
When I smudge my house I like to give my kids a selenite stick. Selenite is a very high vibe crystal known for its cleansing and charging abilities. The first time I did this I told my kids they could imagine bright light coming out of their “magic wand”, or maybe sparkles or glitter. And to imagine the wand and light cleaning any yucky or bad feelings out of the house and replacing it with happy feelings. My son was super excited about this and chose to envision rainbows coming out of his wand (because rainbows make him happy he said). Just have your kid(s) follow you around as you cleanse the space together. It’s a fun little bonding moment for sure!