As we know, everything is made of energy. Including stones, flowers, animals, and houses. Some energies are more conducive toward living a positive joyfilled life while others are simply more dense or contain a bit of a funk about them. As more of us awaken, we begin to see, feel, and experience our intuition telling us if something is off, strange, smelly, or right on.
Many people feel or sense energy when something seems icky, not quite pleasant, or inharmonious. However, we think we have to live with it, when we don’t. And yes, negative and dark energies do exist alongside positive and light energies. Yet they all serve a purpose. Energy, in my opinion, is neither good nor bad, it simply is. It’s up to us to decide what kind of energy we like to be around in our lives. When something smells “fishy” or seems shadowy in a horror film kind of way, it often is, and we can change our relationship with it. Or if we’ve invited negative energy into our space after a challenging argument, we can shift it. One way of doing so is through smudging with sage.
The Native Americans have proven the effectiveness of this practice over hundreds of years. I feel blessed to have experienced this practice in several ceremonies, and to have witnessed an Apache native practicing smudging with an attitude of reverence for all that is — energy in all forms. For an honorable explanation by a native group about the use of plants for smudging, check out this link.
A little personal story about the power of smudging and clearing a house: A few years ago I helped a friend shift the energy in her house she no longer wished to be living in. For reasons unknown to her, she wasn’t able to sell it. Through listening to the house in a certain way, we learned about the anger, grief, and ancestral energies trapped there. Created over time by the challenges of my friend's life. For many hours into the night, we worked with these energies that had the strength to pound on the ceiling, stop the clock in the living room, and bring forth a rancid smell from the indoor swimming pool. Yowza!
We worked diligently with smudging, as well as a few other techniques including: calling upon the angels, the goddess Tara, and toning. My friend's strong intention to clear the house was also helpful and necessary. By the next morning, after clearing the pool, we went outside to take a new look at the house. It seemed as if a shroud had been lifted from it. As we were outside, two people stopped by the house asking about it being for sale. Miraculous? Maybe. But more to the point, the power of intention, listening, and smudging can shift lives toward happiness. Smudging is a prayer. Calling forth a harmonious relationship to exist between you, the earth, and Spirit.
The following tips are to assure success when using sage to smudge a house, apartment, office or any space. Whether your moving into a new house or your renovating an older place or you wish to clear energy after a rockin’ party or after an argument, these tips help bring balance, harmony, and connection into your space and your life.
1. Shell or Bowl. Find a bowl or a large shell to place under the sage as you're walking around the house to catch the ash. A shell is ideal, and is used by folks who do this practice often. You will need to blow on the sage to get the smoke going. You may need to keep the lighter with you to relight the sage stick. The mixture of fire and your breath helps the sage to continue burning. A feather is also a nice way to waft the smoke throughout the area.
2. Exit. Based upon your intuition, feel into which door you'd like the energy to exit from. If you only have one door, great!, easy choice. Open only that door prior to smudging, and allow the door to remain open while smudging. Also open a couple of windows to deter the smoke alarm from sounding. The reason behind opening one door is to give the energy a very specific place to go, so it's not bouncing around the house. You can even help the energy move toward the direction of the open door by simply thinking and visualizing it moving that way as well as sweeping your arm in that direction as you smudge.
3. Sweeping. Begin in the energy dense part of the house. The part that feels, looks, and smells the most funky. You can call upon Archangel Michael to help you with this process simply by thinking of the powerful angel as you begin. As you smudge, remain silent to honor the process and/or tone as suggested below. Then move the stick up high, down low, etc. while sweeping your other hand or feather around the room. Progress through the house, room by room, sweeping and clearing. All the while paying attention to any areas that seem particularly funky, moving the sage around a little while longer in those places. Follow and Listen to your intuition, it will guide you.
4. Finishing. When each of the areas have been swept by smudging, make sure you walk the energy out the door you've chosen. As you walk out the door, the energy will follow you, especially if you invite it to go to a place such as the cosmic core or earth’s core. I recommend dowsing the sage stick with water, then bring it out with you to the edge of the lawn or balcony, if you’re in a town home, apartment, or condo. Then take some of the non-burnt sage, and sprinkle it beyond the door as an offering of goodness. For the harmonious energy to remain. Saying a prayer of gratitude for St. Michael, and to the sage for cleansing and clearing your beloved space. (You can also thank the funky “dark” energies, acknowledging that they served a purpose, and now the purpose is complete.)
* Bonus Tip: I highly recommend you "seal" the space after you close the windows and door by visualizing an energetic large geodesic dome or a sphere or a shape that will go around the entire house, lawn, and outer areas to vibrate at a harmonious energy level. It doesn't have to have a shape; it can simply be a color. Remember to include your intention of the energies you'd like the house to hold. Like Joy, Love, Peace etc.
* Bonus Tip 2: Toning is helpful to release the stagnant energy in a space. To let the unwanted energy know you are shifting the vibration and resonance of the space. Clearing the “negative” with the resonance of harmony. Simply choose a vowel and tone as you smudge. Check out this Earth Attunement podcast to give you a sample of how to bring forth the power of toning.
Also, please leave a comment or ask a question or share about your smudging experiences to help newbees and oldbees learn best practices.