This ancient practice has made quite a comeback in today's wellness scene. Here we explore the origin, purpose, and modern uses surrounding sage.
Ceremonial saging or smudging (terms used for burning herbs for cleansing or healing purposes) dates back centuries in Native American culture. Today, the practice has become commonplace in wellness rituals, as a meditation aid, and to encourage relaxation during yoga sessions. “It’s meant to shift the air or transform the energy in a space, and it’s also an antiseptic,” explains Mallory Modaffari, co-owner of Herbs & Earth, which stocks more than 10 types of sage bundles, along with essential oils and organic, fair-trade tea, herbs, salts, and spices. “Different herbs have different purposes,” she adds. For example, sage and lavender calm the nervous system and help with anxiety and depression. Pine has a grounding, anti-inflammatory effect, while mugwort has been known to enhance lucid dreaming. “It’s all about turning over a new page,” says Modaffari.