Although not commonly used as a culinary herb, the Cahuilla Native Americans would add the White Sage seeds to wheat flour to help make savoury biscuits.
Not all Sage is the same
Under the Genius of Salvia, there are many different species of Sage, one may find including the ones mentioned above.
Some species are mainly grown; as an ornamental flower, some for landscaping purposes due to the many varieties of coloured flower they produce.
Some like the common Sage is used in cooking to enhance the flavours in many dishes.
There is Common Sage and there is White Sage
Among the many varieties of Sage, the Common Sage is the herb normally grown for the use of culinary dishes.
However, their use does not stop at the cooking stage.
There is more to this variety of Sage than meets the eye.
However, there is too much to discuss here so a separate article has been posted, showing the many other benefits of Sage.
This will enable to focus more on the benefits and uses of White Sage below.
You can find this separate article of Sage by selecting this link when you are ready.
Sorry, I meant the other White Sage.
Will discuss what many, Native Americans, Healers of past and present along with many spiritual people have known this to be.
White Sage; is considered a special and sacred herb.
It is interesting to note that the Genius name that is given, Salvia, is associated with Sage, especially White Sage.
Salvia comes from the Latin name Salvus, which means to feel healthy, safe, unharmed or saved which connects well with the benefits and uses of White Sage, as we will find out now.
Most commonly used to negate the negative energies within and around the body and area surrounds.
For hundreds of years if not more, traditional ceremonies would use White Sage, both for clearing rituals as well as for personal use.
Many Native Americans along with Sharman’s around the world and those with spiritual interests who know and understand the importance of such benefits still use the cleansing rituals to this day.
During times of struggle, stress, challenges and even confrontation, people would call upon the power of White Sage where it became a respected and honoured friend.
The best method is called smudging.
This is where the White Sage leaves are bundled together to form smudge sticks.
From here the tips of the leaves would be burnt then once the fire has gone allow the smoke to be generally fanned gently either around the person or area that is requiring the cleansing.
The Sage sticks when burnt, release negative ions.
The negativity that you do want.
Ions are molecules that due to atmospheric forces or as stated above environmental influences have either lost or gained an electron.
The positive ions are molecules that have electrons missing which have shown to have a negative impact on the body and environment at all levels.
An excess of positive ions can affect the environment as well as the human body both in the physical and spiritual sense.
Consider the positive ions as a creator of dust that inhibits the body and the area around from moving freely and comfortably.
In time, this dust creates havoc on the body immune system and gives the unwanted feeling of being within an area that you struggle to move around without stirring up the dust around you.
Negative ions are charged molecules that have gained the electron.
When negative ions attract and connect with the positive ions they become charged, therefore dissipate the unwanted energies positive ions have allowed to linger on.
The negative ions become the dust collector allowing you the freedom to move as well as allowing you to breathe comfortably with ease.
Feeling refreshed and good
Have you ever felt that uplifting moment when after a period of dryness the rain comes along and changes the atmosphere around you?
To the point, you feel relaxed and refreshed.
Just ask any farmer during those drought seasons how it feels when the rain comes.
What about when you are by the ocean.
Have you felt that feeling of serenity and relaxed atmosphere watching and hearing the waves crashing down on the beach as it moves in and out?
That is the example that negative ions can create which is why these are the only form of negative that you would want around you.
Cleansing and clearing
White Sage has the same effect in the clearing and cleansing process where it uplifts the moods around the area and creates that relaxed atmosphere.
The leaves of the White Sage are bundled and tied together to form Smudge Sticks. (Refer to diagram).
This is the common practice performed and used by the Native Americans, Shamans, other healers and the many spiritual people of today.
The White sage when burned produces negative ions as described further above.
It not only becomes the dust collector in the physical but also on the spiritual level, aids in clearing away any unwanted energies lying around which create unnecessary feelings of negativity.
How to use Smudge Sticks for clearing and cleansing
This method is not only for ritual gatherings but can also be used on a personal level or around the home.
Before you light the Smudge Stick is it best if the following setup is maintained.
Considered by many, White Sage is sacred, as is the intention of the smudging you are about to perform.
• If you are cleansing, say the whole home (depending on the size of the home or area), one stick will be more than enough.
• However, if it is only for a smaller area or working on you, then a few leaves will be enough to work its magic.
• Have a bowl ready to place the lit Sage in. Make sure the Bowl is heatproof and if you place it on the surface that any heat that may be generated from underneath the bowl, will not create any issues.
• In general, a smudging feather is normally used but you can also fan the smoke using your hand.
• When fanning the smoke remember, you are also fanning burning embers so be careful you do not overdo the fanning motion.
• Wear comfortable clothes and ensure that you are not wearing anything that can easily catch alight should any embers fall upon you. This would also include ensuring that if you have long hair it is away from when lighting the smudge stick.
• Common sense should be applied.
Method of use
• Ensure that all windows and doors are closed and there is no draft.
• Before you light, the White Sage, ensure you have your intentions set in your mind first. This way you are giving a purpose for the Smudging and not just a regular clean up.
• Light the tip of the White Sage bundle until a flame appears. You can shake it gently or blow the flame out ensuring that the embers are working and giving off the smoke.
• When the stick or leaves start to smoulder, place it in the bowl you have with you so you can safely carry it with you.
• When clearing a room it is best to start on cleansing yourself first.
• It is probably best to cleanse the whole home rather than just one room unless there is a specific reason or purpose in doing so.
• Should you be doing some cleansing around the whole home, don’t forget to work on the entrance areas and when most traffic is around the home as well.
• The main aspect here is to use your intuition of what you feel is best.
• Once a nice smoke is going, use your feather or your hand and direct the smoke over your body from the feet up to your head. Direct the smoke one more time, this time from the Head back down to the feet.
• For those who wish to use incantations, this is when you would say with what your intention is for the cleaning and cleansing.
• For other’s who may be uncomfortable with incantations, you can imagine the smoke taking away with it any negative energy from your life or the area smudged.
• When you have cleared the energies on yourself then you can start with the room beginning in one corner.
• Direct the smoke from the ground up to the ceiling again saying either your desired incantation or visualizing the negative energies being absorbed by the smoke.
• Repeat this procedure for each corner. Once completed go to the centre of the room and once more direct the smoke from the ground up to the ceiling.
• For other areas as stated above work on the entrance areas and where most traffic is seen.
• When you have cleared the space, allow the sage bundle to burn out or gently press it out.
• It is always best if you have a sage bundle to use along with loose leaves as well.
You can find various sizes here should you have difficulty finding them in a store.
Do you have your own method of clearing you would like to share with others to know?
What about any incantations you may use?
Perhaps you have some visualisation techniques you wish to share that may help your fellow soul traveller.
If so, I would love to hear from you.