Smudge stick blessings are an ancient ceremony practiced by many indigenous cultures around the world and have gained popularity in New Zealand in recent years.
And as the name suggests, it uses smudge sticks. Smudge sticks are a powerful ritual that can be used to clear negative energy, honor and connect with spirit, and create a sense of peace and balance in dark corners.
In this article, we’ll discuss the basics of smudge stick blessings, as well as some tips for New Zealand healers and practitioners who are new to this practice.
What is a Smudge Stick?
A smudge stick is basically a bundle of herbs and plants that are burned as part of a ceremonial practice.
The herbs and plants used in smudge sticks can vary depending on the culture but typically include sage sticks, sweet grass, cedar, lavender, and other herbs and plants that have spiritual or healing properties. But the most common one is done through burning sage.
Smudge stick blessings are used to clear negative energies, honor and connect with the spirit, and create a sense of peace and balance in hidden spaces.
What is a Smudge Stick Blessing?
A smudge stick blessing is a ceremonial practice used to clear negative or stagnant energy, honor and connect with spirit, and create a sense of peace and balance in a space.
The ceremony typically involves burning smudge sticks while calling in the four directions and then smudging oneself and others with the smoke. This is usually done when the smoke rises.
Smudging is believed to cleanse the energy of a space and to invite positive energy. The ceremony can be used to celebrate special occasions, to mark the start of a new project or journey, or simply to create a sense of peace and balance in a space.
The Benefits of a Smudge Stick Blessing
Smudging is an ancient practice that has been used for centuries to purify and cleanse a space.
Smudging is believed to clear negative energy and evil spirits, honor and connect with spirits, and create a sense of peace and balance in a space.
The ritual of smudging can also be used to help us focus and center ourselves, as well as to give thanks and open our hearts to the world around us.
Preparing for a Smudge Stick Blessing
Before beginning a smudge stick blessing, it is important to prepare and gather the necessary supplies.
Here are a few tips to help you prepare for a smudge stick blessing.
Choosing the Right Smudge Stick
When choosing a smudge stick, it is important to consider the herbs and plants that are used in the smudge stick. For instance, if you pick sage smudge sticks, you need to know about the herbs in them. This will help in burning sage properly.
Different herbs and plants have different spiritual and healing properties, so be sure to choose a smudge stick that will best serve your intention. It is also important to make sure that the smudge stick is made from sustainably sourced herbs and plants.
For example, white sage smudge sticks typically consist of bundles and dried white sage leaves used for cleansing and purification rituals. So pick the one that suits you.
Creating a Sacred Space
Creating a sacred space is a vital part of preparing for a smudge stick blessing.
Begin by clearing the space of any clutter or objects that may interfere with the ritual. You may also want to create an altar or sacred space in the center of the room, where you will place the smudge stick and other items that you will be using during the ritual.
You can also use crystals, candles, stones, or other items to help create a sacred space.
Gathering Your Supplies
In addition to the smudge sticks, you will need a few other items to complete the smudge stick blessing. You will need a fireproof container or dish for the smudge stick, matches or a lighter, a feather, and a fan or bellows (optional).
You may also want to gather some crystals, stones, or other items that you may want to use during the ritual.
Conducting the Smudge Stick Blessing
Once you have gathered all of the necessary supplies, you can begin the smudge stick blessing.
Here are the steps for conducting the smudge stick blessing:
Cleansing the Space
Begin by cleansing the space with a sage smudge stick.
Light the smudge stick and use the feather to direct the smoke around the room.
As you do this, focus on your intention for the ritual and visualize the smoke clearing away any negative energy in the space.
Once the space has been cleansed, you can invoke the spirit of the four directions.
Begin by facing east and calling in the spirit of the east. Visualize a white light entering the space from the east.
Repeat this for the south, west, and north, visualizing the white light entering the space from each direction.
Calling in the Directions
Once the spirit of the four directions has been invoked, you can call in the four directions.
Begin by facing east and calling in the east. Call in the energy of the East and ask for guidance, protection, and clarity.
Repeat this for the south, west, and north.
Smudging Yourself and Others
Once the four directions have been called in, you can begin smudging yourself and others.
Begin by smudging yourself with the smoke of the smudge stick, starting at your feet and working your way up to your head.
Visualize the smoke cleansing and purifying your energy. Repeat this for any other people who are present.
You can also use a fan or bellows to direct the smoke around the room.
Closing the Smudge Stick Blessing
Once the smudging is complete, it is time to close the smudge stick blessing.
Here are the steps for closing the smudge stick blessing:
Begin by thanking the spirit of the four directions for their guidance and protection. Visualize the white light that you invoked earlier slowly fading away.
Releasing the Directions
Next, release the directions by facing each direction in turn and thanking them for their energy. Visualize the energy slowly dissipating and the space returning to its natural state.
Once the directions have been released, you can ground yourself by standing with your feet firmly planted on the ground and taking a few deep breaths. This will help you reconnect with the earth and come back to the present moment.
Clearing the Space
Finally, clear the space by smudging the room one more time with the smudge stick.
Visualize the smoke clearing away any remaining negative energy in the space. When you are finished, extinguish the smudge stick in a heatproof bowl or dish.
Smudge stick blessings are a powerful ritual that can be used to clear negative energy, honor and connect with spirit, and create a sense of peace and balance in a space.
By following the steps outlined in this article, healers and practitioners in New Zealand can make the most of their smudge stick blessing.