The Art of Smudging With Sage


Man did not weave the web of life – he is merely a strand in it.
Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.
– Chief Seattle, 1854 treaty oration

I like to smudge sage, it is ancient Native American Tradition, as well as a tradition with many cultures throughout the world. There are many types of herbs you can smudge, sweet grass, lavender, cedar, palo santo and so on. I like to use white sage.

My paternal grandmother Lokalona, (Cherokee) taught me that you are supposed to light it with a wooden match. I have done this countless times and yesterday the match head flew off already lit when I struck it on the side of the matchbox and landed right on top my head! It burnt a spot in my part and singed my hair. Now, I do not think burning hair is recommended unless you are practicing some kind of superstition about burning hair and a vision of your future husband/wife is revealed…we will leave superstitions to another blog post and my maternal grandmother!

You should use a clay type fire proof bowl or a shell to hold the ashes and burning fragments and then offer those back to the Mother Earth when they have cooled.

Smudging with sage has many benefits and research shows it raises the negative ions in the air, helping with positive energy.

A little about a Negative Ion Field:

A Negative Ion Field may be helpful with the following:
*Stimulate the Parasympathetic Nervous System which may cause relaxation.
*Balancing adrenals
*Increasing utilization of nutrient absorption
*Decreases pulse
*Supports good bacteria
*Supports many of the body functions

You can purchase sage at many health food stores, new age centers, Native American cultural centers, the internet or grow and dry your own. Some you will find are mixed with other herbs as well.

Set an Intention: Make sure you set an intention, say a prayer to God or The Universe while you are smudging. Be clear on what your intention is. Yesterday I asked for a peaceful end to the water fight in Standing Rock North Dakota. This is something every living thing has a right to, clean water. Please take a moment and send a prayer.

Open a Window: It is said in Native American tradition that people with negative energy are offended by sage almost to the point of revulsion. It is important that when you are burning the sage to have a place for the bad vibes to escape too.

Lighting the Sage: This can be tricky, remember try to use a long wooden match just watch out for flying lit pieces of it!  Once you have a flame blow it out until you see lighted embers. You will witness the fragrant stream of white smoke coming off the embers. I blow on them to keep them going, or move the smudge stick around in the air or around objects that you are smudging.

You can smudge objects to clear negative energy, like your electronics for example.  Some people like to smudge jewelry or other items that might have absorbed bad vibes. You can sage people as well. The best way to do this is have them stand with arms out to the sides, almost like at the airport when they “wand” you. Do the front first, then the back.

Extinguishing your sage is important. Either snuff it out or take it outside and put dirt over the lit end. Make sure to offer any ashes back to Mother Earth and then once you are sure it is out store the sage higher than your waist. This is for respect and keeping the energy in a higher space.

Come visit us at Aqua Serene Wellness and have some tea and enjoy our many services listed below. We love the good energy it brings to come together in community. We smudge with sage at our place often and most everyone that stops in always mentions how the good the energy feels in our space. Leave a comment below, we love hearing from you!

We are located in Carmel Indiana, and offer Holistic Skin Care Services, Colon Hydrotherapy, Raindrop Technique, Jin Shin Jyutsu®, Energy Therapies, Ionic Foot Detox, Massage by Simply Serene Massage  and White Wolf Services Acupuncture by Eastern Wind Acupuncture  and Functional Medicine by Wellspring Functional Health.

Aqua Serene Wellness Spa, 301 E. Carmel Dr, Carmel IN. 46032  phone: 317-564-0930