From scents to the ingredients, sage can really add more ambience, atmosphere and overall, seriously enhance your meditation sessions.
If you are new to burning sage, there are some things you should know before you get started with your smudging rituals, meditations and ceremonies. Not only will we cover the basics of smudging and how to burn sage, but we’ll also talk about the magical plant, sage benefits and ways to use white sage in your everyday life.
How do you energetically cleanse any object or space using Sage? Grab your lighter or matches and your favourite smudge stick, and let’s get started!
About White Sage
Sage is a mild, slightly sweet herb with a calming, earthy aroma that has been burned for centuries in spiritual and ceremonial purposes. You can also burn white sage in your home or office to cleanse energy that may be residing there.
'Smudging' is a common practice worldwide. It means to burn herbs such as white sage, which is said to cleanse a certain space with the smoke of the plant. Cleansing refers to "spiritual cleaning", so the expelling of negative energy.
Like many adopted wellness rituals, the use of sage actually has some pretty deep roots. The people who spread this custom were mainly the Native Americans throughout the USA and the Pagans and Celtic Druids in United Kingdom who spread these customs throughout Europe, though many cultures throughout the world also use smudging to clear negative energy and for ceremony.
For those many people that admire the connection to the earth, to nature and spirit the act of smudging can bring, it is an added sensory experience to the practice of energy work and spiritual rituals. When the sage is engulfing the space it takes with it the energy of darkness, negativity and other stagnant or heavy energy.
Sage is often burned during cleansing and smudging rituals, but not all varieties are created equal. White sage is the best variety for these ceremonies. White sage has longer-lasting burn time and an earthier scent that stands up well against stronger burning herbs.
If you’re going to be using sage regularly for cleansing or smudging ceremonies, it may be worth investing in a high-quality bundles of white sage, where you can even add your own dried flowers or herbs from the garden.
When buying White Sage it is important to look at your supplier, as not all sage is created equal! We buy Organic (USDA) White Sage, directly from our natively-owned farm in Upland, California. Our meticulously hand-tied white sage bundles, use absolutely no pesticides or growth hormones/chemicals and are sun dried for a simply amazing all natural product, which takes longer to develop, but is worth the wait, burning a natural sage scent that is clean.
Please be careful when sourcing your sage. The root must always be left in the ground and a prayer of thanks given for each harvest. From the time it’s harvested to the time the ashes are disposed of must be purposeful, intentional, and sustainable.
Our Special Little Bundles, are all hand-tied, sun dried and finished with beautiful dried flowers to make them really special for sacred rituals.
For thousands of years, white sage has been burned in ceremonial practices. Native Americans, Pagans, Druids and indigenous peoples all over the world have used it for cleansing and healing. You must respect that when selected your sage, give thanks for it's medicinal properties from the earth.
When connecting to your own culture, you may find other herbs and flowers that are used for smudging as well, for example the Druids (from the Pagan line, Britain) used to mix sage bundles with nettles or rosemary, rose petals for love and other English Garden picks. The spiritual cleansing comes from the practitioner. It's just nice to always be considerate of the land and know the origin of your dried bundles.
So how to use your sage effectively? By creating a calming ritual that helps to release the stagnant energy that can breed negativity, white sage sticks can be burnt for many reasons including moving into a new home, after a period of illness, Equinox or Seasonal changes, starting a new chapter in your life or simply to refresh your energy before your daily meditation. They are very effective in all your rituals and as the Druid Prayer sites:
"By star and stone By the power of the land within and without. By all that is fair and free. I believe in and celebrate the spirituality of all life. I am one with the community of the Natural World And the ever-flowing tide of the seasons, Honouring all, past, present and future. My life is a journey, Seeking spiritual awakening, inspiration and wisdom through the Awen.
May there be peace in this place and throughout the whole world."
How to use Sage Effectively
White sage is an herb that can be burned (in a safe way) in order to cleanse an object or a space around you. Many people have also used it for healing purposes, purification and protection. Here’s what you need to know about white sage and how you can use it safely at home.
Smudging, what does it actually mean?
Smudging is a cleansing technique which entails burning dry sage or other herbs to cleanse your home or space of negative energy. By filling the space or aura with the cleansing power of sage, and clearing that smoke it dispels negative energy with it. The smoke from smudging sticks carries these negative energies away while replacing them with positive ones.
It’s said that a simple smudging ritual will leave your home feeling more open and peaceful. If you’re ready to give it a try, here’s what you need to know about how to burn sage safely.
How to Burn Sage Safely.
Step 1: Open any windows and doors to allow any stagnant energy to disperse.
Step 2: Light your smudge stick over a flame-proof bowl, until a small flame has caught. Blow out the flame, the sage should smoke gently like incense. Burn within sight and keep away from anything that can catch fire. Keep away from children & pets.
Step 3: Walk around your space clockwise, or from the ground up if you are cleansing your Aura, using your hand or card, some like to use a found feather to gently waft the smoke through your space.
With both hands, bring the smoke into your heart, over your head and down the front and back of your body to cleanse yourself. Pick up the sage and with one hand wave the smoke onto your body starting at the feet and working up to your neck.
Starting on the lowest level of your space, use your hand or breath to force the smoke into all corners. Move in a clockwise direction around your house (usually starting at the front door), and gently wave the smoke into the air as you move. 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.
When you have finished your ritual and meditation, you can really feel the clearing of energy, make sure your sage and any ambers are fully extinguished. Put out your sage by gently pressing it into the fireproof bowl or plate. You may wish to fill your bowl with dirt or sand to help conduct heat better and for using to snub out the sage bundle. Return the sage to your altar. You can re-light your bundle as often as possible until it burns down too low to use.
Remember, safety first - don't bring a flame near any flammable materials, such as curtains or your clothes. Be careful and gently waft the smoke to fill your space.
Smudging Prayers for Protection and Cleansing
Knowing the significance of sage among Native American Nations is important to consider, as members of various Native cultures argue that there's a very fine line between appreciation and appropriation. Sage has been used by these communities for hundreds of years, for medicinal treatment of ailments, headaches and other treatments, and when you start to learn about your roots, your own culture, you can use your sage for so many different rituals and meditations, the most popular being to cleanse and clear your space of negative or heavy feeling energy.
Cleansing with sage involves more than just burning the dried leaves of the plant and waving it around.
A great one if you have been sick and finally are feeling better with fresh energy or have been grieving or dealing with heart break, to release that energy and move it out of your aura and out of your home.
Have you been plagued with doubts lately? Does there seem to be a cloud of negativity following you wherever you go? Then it’s time to consider performing a smudging prayer. Your intention, mantra or prayer, is a set of words that are spoken during the smudging ceremony that are designed to focus your mind on what you want the smudging ceremony to achieve, so your words should always be positive and affirmative.
1. Prayer for cleansing and protecting your home
When creating a smudging prayer for the home, you will need to think about what you want to achieve – the more specific you can be the better. Do you want to be more productive? Do you want to clear negative energies after an argument? Has it been a very difficult time for you and your family? Or is it part of your daily ritual or welcoming the Equinox.
It’s important to remember that every situation is unique so the more you can feel and adapt the prayer to your intention, the better it will be. However, if you are looking for a little inspiration here are a couple of mantras that you can adopt:
“Smoke, air, fire, and earth, cleanse and bless this home and hearth. Drive away harm and fear, only positive energy may enter here.”
2. Prayer for cleansing and protecting your self
Spiritual cleansing is important for many reasons. The first being that it purifies your aura, which can take on other energies, can build up and wreak havoc on your emotional body. In addition to getting rid of negative energies, spiritual cleansing also purifies your aura of harmful energies and spirits.
There are countless prayers you can use for protecting your own energy. It is best to think of one thing you want to get rid of, such as negativity or a bad habit, then make one positive affirmation to confirm your intention. Your words themselves do not necessarily work on their own, meditation on them is important as they are powered by your thought and feelings.
3. Prayer for protecting your friends and family
Smudging prayers for protecting your family are particularly beneficial if you put your emotions into your heart and words... Have fears and negative thoughts towards a family member or friend? Worried about that time you raised your voice and had a blazing row and now your regret it?
Smudging prayers can be used practically for any intent, from healing rifts between partners to infertility and idleness.
"Earth, Air, Sea, and Wind,
Bless my family and my friends.
Power of Love and Hope and Light,
protect me onwards through the night.
Guard my home against things that creep,
Good spirits watch us as we sleep,
by Fire, Storm, Earth, and Sea.
As I speak – so mote it be."
Here is also a Druid prayer you may want to use:
4. Prayer for cleansing your surroundings
Smudging prayers for cleansing your surroundings can be short or full of as many words as you need! Rhyming prayers are often easier to remember and many spiritual healers suggest that the process of rhyming can also raise more energy and resonance with your words. You may feel the need to cleanse your surroundings before performing a ritual, meditation, or even before you start on a new task, to ensure all negativity has been removed. A short cleanse could be something like the below:
“The negativity of this sacred space,
I expel you by using the light of my sacred grace.
You hold no right or power here
I face and stand you without fear.”
A longer cleansing prayer for your surroundings could be the above, followed by the below taken from the druid closing prayer. It is an idea to write your prayer out and repeat it many times taking in each word, you can then burn the paper as you close our your cleansing ceremony.
5. Prayer for attracting positive energy
The mind is incredibly powerful. Research shows that stating positive mantras or yoga prayers regularly can improve your positivity and increase feelings of self-worth. A great way to start the day, every day, positivity - feeding into your wellbeing and also can be great for use in smudging sage.
Furthermore, when you are feeling stronger and more positive, you are much more likely to be open to new experiences and attract positivity into your life, so let's all practice bringing more and more positivity into our lives!
"May the sage cleanse my hands, my feet, my heart, my throat, my eyes, and my soul. Thus, enabling me to see, feel, touch, and hear about the beauty of this world."
And finally, if you feel you would like to close your ritual with the druid prayer - you can recite the close below, feel the positive and fresh energy you have cerated and feel the love of peace in your heart:
Once you’ve cleansed yourself and space, the energy often relaxes. This is the time for you to fill the space with positive energy. You can do this with music or mantra chanting as you walk about. Some people like to spray rose water in the air in each room.
Most people should cleanse their space and themselves once a week. But, use your intuition and do it as often as you feel necessary. Also, it depends on what sort of day you are having! Let's hope it's a positive one - that brings Pure Joy!