If the last few years has left you wanting to re-connect with nature and escape the rat race, pack up and go live in the woods, I'm here to tell you that you are not alone! Sometimes we, as humans, need to take a break and just escape #cottagecore style!!
Crafts such as herb crafts are a great way to reconnect with the natural environment, as well as to produce something that is both sustainable and practical.
Why smudge with Rosemary?
Smoking ceremonies, have been used by many cultures throughout the world for the purpose of cleansing, however every culture has their own beliefs around the use of smoking ceremonies as well as the herbs used in them.
Rosemary has been used in smoking ceremonies to remove negative energies. It is also considered to be a herb which promotes clarity of thought and enhanced memory (hence its use in ANZAC ceremonies).
I personally find that Rosemary is a good herb to smudge with. Not only is it cleansing, but is is also fairly readily available and easy to grow. If you are undertaking this activity please be respectful of where you harvest your herbs i.e. make sure you have permission to harvest them (preferably out of your own garden!).
Supplies to make Rosemary Smudge Stick
- Fresh rosemary
- Cotton thread or organic hemp string or jute twine (make sure it is a natural fibre as it will burn).
- Scissors or shears
How to Make Rosemary Smudge Stick
1. Cut multiple rosemary branches and wash in cold water to remove any insects etc.
2. Pat dry the branches with a towel.
3. Bundle the branches together. Make the bundle thick as the rosemary will shrink as it dries.
4. Using your string of choice, wrap and double knot the base of the rosemary bundle.
5. Wrap the thread tightly around the bundle and double knot at the top.
6. Lay flat on a mesh tray to dry or hang in a dark dry place until completely dry.
How to use your smudge stick
- To use your Rosemary Smudge Stick, light the end of the dried rosemary bundle over a fireproof bowl with sand or dirt contained in it.
- *Ceramic works well, as do things such as abalone shells, but please make sure they are sourced ethically. Abalones are one of the many classes of organism threatened with extinction due to overfishing.
- Blow out the smudge stick so that it is smouldering and not burning.
- You can either leave the rosemary bundle smouldering over the bowl (make sure that it is not left unattended) or you can go from room to room, wafting the smoke with a feather to encourage the smoke to permeate every corner of your living space and cleanse the air.
- Once done, snuff out the smouldering smudge stick in the sand or against the abalone shell and store it away in a pouch for later use.
- Ensure that the smudge stick is fully out and cold prior to placing in the pouch.
*Because of Rosemary's ability to help clear the mind, it is a good herb to smudge with prior to meditating.
Let me know which herbs you have used for smudging. Do you make your own smudge sticks? Let me know in the comments.
n.b.The terms smudging and smoke cleansing are used interchangeably in this blog post to refer to cleansing with smoke. Smudging is traditionally a practice performed by Indigenous Native Americans and is a term that is often confused with general smoke cleansing practices. If you would like to know more about this refer to the blog post on Smudging vs Smoke Cleansing.