The herb ‘Sage’ is often promoted as having properties that enable it to assist with the banishing of evil spirits or forces. Sage can be used to protect specific items by storing them with bundles or boughs of Sage, or the herb may be burnt through the practise of ‘Smudging’ in order to rid an area or home of the influences of evil spirits and demons.
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Smudging is the practise of burning herbs such as Sage to create a cleansing smoke bath that can be used to purify people, objects, and homes of negative effects caused by evil or negative entities. Smudging is a practise utilised by many indigenous cultures including the Native American Indians.
The practise of smudging can be carried out using ‘smudge-sticks’, similar to joss-sticks smudge-sticks are purpose made from the herb Sage and may be lit with a candle. Alternatively loose dry herbs may be sprinkled over a burning log or indoor fireplace, etc. to achieve the same effect.
When performing a smudging ritual it is important to remember that if burning large quantities of Sage to avoid respiratory stress and to avoid performing the smudging ritual around infants, pregnant women, asthmatics, etc. and to take all relevant precautions whilst dealing with open flames.
Other herbs used in the practise of smudging that can be combined with Sage include: Bay leaf (to protect against colds and flu), Fennel (to calm nerves), Mugwort (for healing or to stimulate lucid dreams) and Orris root (to increase psychic gifts and concentration).