The regular and ritual cleansing of ourselves and the spaces we live and work in can be a powerful practice to remove stagnant, dense or unwanted energy and to invite or return to vibrant, flowing energy and abundance.
The benefits are especially pronounced at times of change, or desired change, and any time where transition, support or simply fresh energy is desired.
For those taking part in Yoga Shala's online classes, cleansing your home yoga space is a great way to set the mood and your intentions for a positive online class experience.
Methods of cleansing:
Smudging uses plant medicines such as palo santo or white sage to purify the air and energy. The lightness of the smoke attaches to dense, heavy or “stuck” energy and restores it to its fluid and vital state.
This comes in little leaved bundles ready to burn; the name Sage derives from the Latin “Salvia” meaning “to heal” and is most notable for its presence in Native American and Latin American Shamanic traditions.
Light the sage, begin at the main entrance of the space and move around fanning the smoke towards the walls and corners and into closets and cupboards.
The intention of your cleansing may also determine the direction you move the smoke. Moving clockwise is said to be more effective at manifesting new energy, or “bringing in”, whilst moving counterclockwise helps to fully open the energy body and thus facilities release or “moving out” of energy.
Traditionally, an abalone shell would be used to collect the ash from the sage, and a feather would be used to waft the smoke through the space. These are not necessary for smudging but when they are used it allows the energy of the four elements to be incorporated into the ritual: the shell representing water, the smoke and feather as the air, the sage as the earth - and when lit, fire.
Palo Santo: Palo Santo meaning Holy Wood has its roots in the indigenous Amazonian traditions, and additional to its cleansing properties claims a spiritual protection, as it helps to clarify, to set and to seal your intentions. It has a softer, sweeter smell than the herby strength of sage, and is burned as a wood, as opposed to sage where the leaves are burned. It burns slowly, and in small doses, making it better suited to personal rituals or yoga at home cleansing.
Palo Santo is traditionally used for relieving common colds, flu symptoms, stress, asthma, headaches, anxiety, depression, inflammation, emotional pain and more. It is also great for calming the immune and nervous systems for faster recovery of illness. As a side note, the essential oil is great for aromatherapy and can also be used during massage work to assist in healing, and also works well for physical pain and inflammation.
Use in the same way you would your sage stick, by igniting the Palo Santo. Hold at about a 45 degree angle pointing the tip down toward the flame. Allow it to burn for about 30 secs to 1 minute and then blow out. Move about the space you would like to clear the energy in the same way as above. The rich smell will also bring peace and clarity to the moment along with good feelings. When finished, make sure you place the stick in a fireproof bowl of metal, glass or clay. The glow will end on its own unless you blow on the ember which will keep the smoke going.
Using salt as a cleansing purification has been around for thousands of years. In fact, here at Melton Wellness House we have Himalayan Salt Lamps in all of our therapy rooms for purification.
To cleanse your space, fill four containers with a natural crystalline, rock or sea salt, and place them in the four corners of the space where they will continue to absorb and clean the energy. Where the crystals of the salt intact they maintain a higher vibrance and therefore are a more potent tool. The containers can be left for a couple of days and should be changed whenever the space is cleansed again.
If you want to take this to a higher level, leave the salt out in the moonlight overnight the day before you place the containers in your space, to consecrate the salt in the same way you would energise crystals.
Sound is another way of cleansing a space. Using a solid brass or bronze bell is an effective way of clearing a room.
In this case, take the bell to each corner of a room and ringing it a few times will allow the vibration of the sound to help to dissipate any lingering energies left over from past negative events.
You could also use singing bowls, gongs or chimes in this same way.
You may have noticed the original bell chime as you enter Melton Wellness House, we love that little feature, as it cleanses and clears the space each time every time someone enters.
SEALING YOUR CLEANSE with INCENSE
Using incense is a great way to seal your cleansing. There are many varieties out there but we recommend you use a pure, organic sandalwood or frankincense to seal your ritual.
Frankincense was first used in ancient Egypt and holds a prominent position in ceremonies worldwide. It is believed to assist in the removal of obstructive energies, provide protection and enhance spiritual awareness, and is therefore an ideal incense to use after a cleanse.
Sandalwood is another favourite incense to use, of Indian origin and due to its high levels and purity of oil content, has long been considered sacred. Temple doors are carved from it, as a paste it is used to anoint the forehead in Hindu traditions and in its oil form it is one of the main components of Ayurvedic healing. Its use as an antiseptic has been identified in many folk healing traditions, and even as far as ancient Egypt it was a key element of embalming rituals.
More recently studies suggest that sandalwood smoke is capable of removing large quantities of microbial impurities in the air.
In Buddhism sandalwood is heralded as the perfect aid to meditation and inquiry, claiming the ability to stimulate the senses, invoke trust and self-belief whilst fostering groundedness, enthusiasm and ultimately tranquility – and that’s why it is perfect for use in your home yoga class!
We are on our final day of a three-day cleanse of the space here at Melton Wellness House, so as we reopen after months of lockdowns and frustration that energy has been expelled – and the space is left clear and bright and full of lively energy.
Our therapists’ books are full of customers for December and we are all full of renewed positivity about the future.
Melton Wellness House x