Wednesday, January 7, 2015
If you enter the New Year still feeling inexplicably stuck or burdened, if you feel weighed down or 'heavy', chances are it's due to what's around you. Get out your smudging tools as well as the mop and bucket and make your living space shine!
After a through physical cleaning (because the old saying really IS true that "cleanliness is next to godliness"), I smudge every room from wall to wall- paying special attention to the corners-with white sage. Sage is wonderfully useful for moving out negativity. I then smudge a second time with sweetgrass, which raises the vibration of the space. At the time I do this I also carry a tiny temple bell (the one from my altar) and ring it a couple of times as go along. Bells have long been rung to dispel evil; their movement disrupts negativity and keeps it from re-forming.
Some Buddhists keep a few of these bells tied to a short ribbon or rope to hang in their home for just this purpose; I keep a small set of windchimes hung up on the window valance in my bedroom year round. Wiccan author Scott Cunningham recommended a similar thing, to hang a little bell near a window so that when moved in the breeze it imparted love and happiness to those living in the house.
Many people suffer from the holiday blues when the festivity of Yule/Christmas ends and a sudden shift in excitement and activity occurs. Emotions have been steadily building for weeks and when it is over we sometimes feel overwhelmed with a sudden emptiness which can lead to depression. These emotions leave the same sort of psychic signature as the vibration we raise for ritual, and if ungrounded, we are left feeling disoriented and unbalanced. This vibration becomes a sort of static which affects our physical and emotional function: cleaning it out restores us to balance.
Other ways to psychically cleanse the living space is to wash down the area with Florida Water, which is type of cologne used in spiritual cleaning by those who practice hoodoo and folk magic. Florida Water-scented with florals and citrus, primarily orange essential oils- is added to a bucket of water and then used as a magical preparation to remove negativity and replace it with a higher vibration. ( Florida Water is also an excellent agent in aiding you to contact the Ancestors, so leave a small bowl of water with a little in it on your altar or elsewhere.) Kananga Water is a similar preparation, except it is scented with ylang-ylang and suspended in alcohol. Either preparation leaves the refreshed and rejuvenated. You can make your own Florida Water ( recipes on the Internet) or purchase it commercially. I have found it in the supermarket in the personal care isle.
A pomander made from sticking whole cloves into an orange is a great way to seal out negativity (cloves,citrus fruit) while giving off a lovely scent. Tie a ribbon around it for hanging, and put it in a place where it will dry naturally, otherwise it may mold or mildew. It is also believed that a pomander of this type will bring prosperity and financial blessing into the home.
Peace comes when we make a place for it. Spiritually cleansing your living place creates the calm needed for regeneration during the months of Winter. Creating a lovely, comforting place allows us to
invite this peacefulness in while we are resting, and renewing our spirit as we look forward to the return of the Light Time of the year.