This practice has been around for 1000’s of years.

It was used in Ancient Rome, Ancient Greece, Ancient Egypt and by Native Americans.


Smudging can be done on any space, object or person.

Here are some instances when you may want to smudge:


the energy within it feels like pressure around you,

the energy within it feels heavy or stagnant,

negativity has taken place in it (emotions, arguments, etc.),

the energy changes your mood while in the space

(ex: going from happy to sad or depressed),

negative persons have occupied the space,

it is a new space for you (new home, rental, office space, car, etc.)

on a regular basis to sustain a positive environment,

events taking place (ex: new year, new or full moon)

or any time that you want to.


anything that you are given or buy to add to your space as an object can absorb the energy of those who have handled it and the space from which it came.


(you can smudge yourself or have someone else do it)

feel unwell, feel negative emotions or feel negativity around you.

This is an excellent time to smudge with the combination of events taking place:

New Year

Mercury Retrograde ends Jan 8th

Energy Gateways – Jan 1st and Jan 11th

Full Moon Jan 12th



the burning of herbs to cleanse or get rid of negative energy.

(including bad spirits)

There are different kinds of herbs that can be used:

(these are some examples)

Cedar: calming, comforting, purifying and protective

Juniper: centering and cleansing while helping with clarity and focus.

Lemongrass: refreshing and helps with communications and channeling.

Pine: cleansing, renewing and strengthening.

Sweetgrass: assists with ancient wisdom, calls upon ancestral and spiritual helpers.

Sage (the most commonly used): cleansing, balancing and strengthening;

banishes negativity.

Tools associated with smudging: (photos of mine)

         Abalone Smudging Shell with stand.jpg                                Abalone Smudging Shell.jpg

                  Abalone Shell on Stand                                          Inside of an Abalone Shell


               Smudging Feather

                   sage-bundle                           loose-herbs                         charcoal2

                Sage Bundle                    Loose Herb (or mixture)                      Charcoal

Tools for smudging can be purchased at your local New Age store or online.

Note: You can make your own smudging feather as I did.


When using the charcoal to burn loose herbs, make sure that the item you use to hold the charcoal can withstand the heat of it.

I went on vacation and did not pack my abalone shell so instead I used a thick glass ashtray which was fine for burning loose leaves of sage but when it came to burning loose herbs with the charcoal I got half way through the house and it shattered in my hand.

Luckily knowing it would get hot, I had a pot holder between the ashtray and my hand.

Smudging process:

There are also different versions of this process so here are the basic steps.

(I recommend that you first put protection around yourself using white light or whatever means you use.)

(1) light the sage or herb (stick or loose) in your abalone shell or heat tolerant container

(2) put out any flame created to allow the smoke to stream from it

(if using the charcoal, sprinkle the loose herb on it as needed to keep the smoke flowing.)

(3) walk around the space, object or person using the feather to direct the smoke where you want it

(4) direct the negativity out of the space then bless the space before moving on

As an example, I say “All negativity leave this space. You are not welcome here.” (repeat over and over) and “I bless this space in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.”

Symbol: Triquetra     Represents: Holy Trilogy     Meaning: Protection


[Photo of the Triquetra with a Circle that is on my desk.]

(The circle represents spirit and the cosmos, unification of spirit and matter, great strength as the circle has no beginning or end, and creates a spiritual/physical safe haven.)

(5) disposing of the ash (it can be buried in your yard or and some may disagree with this but it can be thrown away after giving “thanks” for the cleansing process and calling upon the spiritual world (God, Angels, guides) asking that any negativity be removed from it for transmutation to positive energy for use in the world.

 Home: smudge all rooms, closets, windows, doorways and corners.

Objects: walk around it (furniture, etc.) or direct the smoke around it

Person: walk around them moving or directing the smoke towards them

(top of the head to the feet, lift arms and stand with legs shoulder width apart)


For everyday use, you can burn incense.

There are many to choose from.

Choose incense by its specific attributes or because it smells good to you.


Two of my favorite incense to burn.


Something to think about:

Incense is used regularly in the Eastern Catholic Church and occasionally in the Roman Catholic Church. It is burned in a censer that is carried or held. It is used on objects (relics), people and basically space when it is carried in the procession.

The rising smoke represents the ascent of prayer to the throne of God.

My question to you is this…

Would you consider this a form of smudging?


One thought on “Smudging

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