What Is the Purpose of Burning Sage?

By Elton Dunn

Sage burning is a Native American spiritual tradition that's meant to cleanse. Sage burning, also called smudging, drives negative energies away. Learn more about where to find sage sticks and how to properly burn sage.

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Where to Buy

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Don't use fresh or dried sage from the supermarket or your garden. Sage for burning ceremonies is sold in a bundle; you should be able to find it at new age, magic or hippie stores or via online retailers.

Uses

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Sage can clean out negative or old energy from a space. You might wish to perform a sage burning when you move into a new house, when someone you don't like has visited or to cleanse the space spiritually after you've been sick or unhappy.

Technique

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The simple method involves lighting the sage stick and walking around the room in a counterclockwise direction. Have a heatproof container to hold the sage stick and fan the smoke with your hand into the room's corners.

Tips

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Leave the windows in the room open to allow the negative energy to leave the room. Also, you can re-use the sage stick many time so carefully extinguish it when you are finished and store it somewhere safe.

Warnings

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Some people believe the smell after a sage ceremony resembles that of marijuana. As always, when using fire, be careful.