Smudge Bad Energy Away
Smudge Bad Energy Away

Travel with me, if you will, back to high school physics where we learned that energy can neither be created nor destroyed, but rather it can only be transformed or transferred from one form to another. Plants use energy to create photosynthesis. The force we use to throw a bowling ball knocks pins down. A storm creates gale winds and causes ocean waves to rise. Some of us have thigh rub and create our own tiny fires when wearing jeans. We interact with someone toxic and suddenly our mood changes. (Yeah…that part.) All energy goes somewhere and that includes individual energy.

You are responsible for the energy that you create for yourself, and you're responsible for the energy that you bring to others.

Each of us carries our own energy and each interaction or place where we dwell for any amount of time leaves deposits of our energy in spaces and in others. Your body, mind, and spirit react differently to each energy you encounter and when you consider how many energies you run into during the course of a day, it’s no wonder we sometimes feel exhausted or off-center for no apparent reason. The good news is that there is a remedy for this: smudging or saging.

My first experience with smudging was immediately following my divorce. My newly single home felt heavy and I felt tired and cloudy when I was at home. I visited a local metaphysical store and after a quick chat with a staff member, came home and smudged my entire home with white sage. It’s hard to explain the peace I felt afterward…it was akin to having a stuffy nose and then experiencing that first free and clear breath through the nose. The air felt lighter and my home felt like a different space. I was sold.

What I didn’t realize is that in addition to spiritual benefits, sage has real medicinal advantages. Sage smoke goes directly to the brain and is absorbed by the body. According to scientists, sage can clear up to 94 percent of airborne bacteria in a space and disinfect the air. When sage is burned, it releases negative ions, which is linked to putting folks in a positive mood.

My friend, Nikki Nickerson, is a reiki practitioner, gratitude expert, and an overall spiritual gangster. She’s the friend you call when you need some solid prayer, a positive outlook on a grim situation and an overall tightening up of your spirit.

Smudge Sticks Mystical Moon Tarot

Here’s Nikki’s advice on how to get your smudge on.

Why smudge?
It’s a way of cleansing an environment of negative energy and repurposing it. It creates a vacuum of sorts for energy – sucks out the bad energy so you can replace it with positivity. Smudging cleans up a vibe.

Windows open or closed?
Have a window open before, during and after smudging to allow smoke to leave and take the toxins out with it. If you don’t have a window open, energy may move but it will stay in the space. If you’ve smudged before with the windows closed, you may have noticed cyclical behaviors. You have to get the air circulating. I once saw a shaman do smudging of persons outdoors, using a fan to move the energy.

Is smudging a new thing?
Smudging has been used throughout time during worship and spiritual practices. In the Bible, incense made of frankincense, myrrh and other essences/oils was used during prayer and meditation, while in Native American culture, sage is burned to help clear the air of negative energy.

What thoughts should I have while smudging?
You can say a specific prayer or speak positively to the voice in your head or speak to God. Ask that the energy you want to replace be done and ask to attract positive energy. Set your intentions, focus on what’s blocking you, make a request from the universe and/or God. The intentions behind smudging are as important as the process.

What kind of smudge should I buy/use?
White sage is what you’ll hear the most about. It’s best for cleansing air. Keep in mind that the big bundles look great, but they can be hard to relight. Go for the ones that have individual sticks you can remove. Sometimes I use sage incense. I also like the smudge sprays – I spray myself before and after dealing with people who have challenging personalities. In my home, I usually burn sage or Palo Santo and follow with frankincense and myrrh.

Where can I get good sage?
If you’re just starting out, buy it in person from a trusted local source. Phoenix and Dragon in Atlanta is great. Google “metaphysical stores near me” to find local resources.

Beyond sage, what do I need to get started?
Be sure to get something to safely hold your burning smudge stick (like an abalone shell) and a feather that can help you fan the smoke. And you need something to light it with.

How do I smudge?
Once you have your cleansing plant (sage, Palo Santo, etc.), have set your intentions and have opened your windows, you’re ready to light. Hold a piece of your plant (from the opposite end you will burn) at a slight angle and light. Let it burn for a 20-30 seconds and then gently blow out the flame. Your plant should smoke and glow orange at the end. Go room to room with your plant and feather, gently fanning the smoke and stating your desires. Pay special attention to corners, where energy tends to settle. Once you’ve finished, safely place the plant in the holder you have for it and allow it to burn out. Keep it away from anything flammable and continue to monitor the smoke/flame to make sure you’re safe.

Can I smudge myself?
You can smudge yourself by fanning the smoke over your person to purify yourself and smooth out your energy.

What precautions should we take while smudging?
Don’t ever do it with negative intentions. Don’t try to use it as a weapon. Smudging is intended to remove bad energy or energy that does not best serve your spirit. You can’t go into a cleansing process with negative energy and expect positive outcomes.

How often should I cleanse?
It varies based on the energies that have been going on in and around you. Lots of discord? Lots of visitors? You may want to smudge immediately after your encounters. Smudging is just one way you can cleanse. I use a soap with sea salt (which has healing properties) to realign my energy at night, so I wake up with my own energy in the morning.

Smudge Sticks Mystical Moon Tarot