Cleansing Your Energy and Lift Your Spirits with the Sacred Art of Smudging . . .

                                                                                                   Smudging Guidelines
Smudging has been around centuries and has been one of the most common but powerful aids and ways to cleanse the mind, body, and spirit, or even an actual place, of unwanted negative energies and entities such as demons. Smudging ceremonies and rituals can be performed in numerous ways. Part of their beauty is that there are no restrictions or set rules. However, guidelines should be established and follow for safety and to ensure success.

                                                                                        Preparing for the Cleansing Ceremony
~ Clean the area to be smudged.
~ It always helps to dust, vacuum, and put away clothes, toys, and other items.
~ Wear or hold an item of protection such an amulet, talisman, or gemstone.
~ A quartz stone is an excellent option as these stones absorb negative energy.
~ It may be a good idea to think of the ingredients and equipment.
You will require for the Cleansing Ceremony and make a list which can be checked as you gather the items, this will ensure that once the Ceremony begins there will be no interruptions causing the proceedings to be dis-jointed instead of a smooth flow that will help balance the spirits and aura of the ceremony.
~ A floor area should be cleared. ~
It will accommodate the laying out of both the ingredients and equipment for the ceremony on a suitable tablecloth. If it is a smaller ceremony then arrange a suitable cloth on a table.
Once the items have been gathered together and positioned in the order of the ceremony you will be able to commence the proceedings.

The Order of the Ceremony Equipment should be . . .
1. A small box of matches to light the smudge.
2. The smudge stick or other ingredients to be used such as loose Sage leaves or a Sweet grass braid, in a suitable container such as a clay bowl or a fire-proof dish containing a small amount of sand ( to ensure the embers can be extinguished if needed).
3. A few sticks of Incense and a holder can be added but the fragrance should have the properties required for the Purification, Smudging and Cleansing      ( see “what Incense and Plants can be used for Cleansing" section for relevant Incense available from Scented and more) NOTE: You should have an alternative Smudge stick in case the first one does not light for some reason.
4. A few feathers or a fan, used to waft the smoke:
~ Although the next point is not traditional but for safety , it is advised that a damp cloth, be at hand to extinguish any stray embers or sparks which may occur from the Smudge stick or any ingredients burnt during the Ceremony.
~ Make sure that the space you are smudging has windows or some other means for the smoke to escape outside.
~ Do not use near infants, birds, the very elderly, or other individuals with sensitive respiratory systems. Birds are so sensitive that smoke can make them sick or even kill them.
~ Never leave burning smudge unattended.   The final task before the ceremony can begin is something which is certainly not traditional, in order you can perform the Cleansing and Smudging ritual, it may be an idea to switch off your mobile phone!!
5. Cleanse the body first before moving on . . .
~ It is highly recommended to cleanse the body first before moving on to cleanse spaces.
~ The bowl containing either the Smudge stick or loose ingredients should be held by another person who will perform the procedure.
                                                 The bowl must be held in one hand whilst the feather is moved from back to front of the bowl
~ this is known as "Wafting", move the smoke over the body starting at the top of the head and as the smoke moves down the body, the performer should walk in a counter-clockwise circle around the body, wafting all the time until the feet area is reached.
    During the “wafting” Cleansing prayers should be spoken .  Once the body has been cleansed ~ the surrounding places of the home etc can be performed.

  To begin the smudging ceremony . . .
What is important is that you smudge every inch of the house.
This includes cupboard, any cellar areas, every bed and living room, and the attic (if accessible). Start at the door frame of each room and then work your way inside the room and be sure to smudge every corner, in every window, and of course, the floors.
~ Be sure to send smoke up to each corner of the ceiling and along the corners of the walls. After all four corners are “smudged” with smoke, go to the centre of the room and make a clockwise circle of smudge. Complete all rooms. You may also want to blow smoke near the drawers and in the cupboards.
~ As you go through your home, workplace, or other venues or places, be sure to repeat a prayer, verse, or saying that you feel will empower you. The more empowered you feel, the more commanding your presence, and this will help in removing unwanted entities and energies.
~ Speak to yourself, to God, to the universe, or to the energy of life. You might be asking for protection in certain rooms
~ Light some fresh sage, sweet grass, or cedar smudge sticks, keep a dish or bowl under the burning herbs to catch any ash.
~ If you are having problems keeping it lit, occasionally blow on it to keep the embers burning—you want to continue to coax the flame until you get a steady smoke. It does not matter where you start smudging.
~ If you are performing the ritual in your home, you can start at the front door and work your way around from there, or you can start from the backyard and work your way inside.
                                                                                            After you complete all rooms.
Open as many windows and exterior doors as is practical to let the smoke be purged for at least 20 to 45 minutes as this will help "blow away" all the negative energies that you just worked to break down.
                                                                                              Extinguishing the smudge . . .
Always practice safety while you smudge and be sure to have a bowl, dish, or glass to catch the ash. You can extinguish your lit smudging ingredients by placing them under a running tap. Smudge sticks can easily be put out in the bowl of sand like a cigarette.