Smoking with herbs

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The smoking with herbs, resins or spices is an ancient custom that has long been common in many cultures. Celts smoked on their house altars, in the Orient developed a particularly strong fragrance and smoking culture in honor of the gods and tribes of Native Americans in America sought for healing and harmony with nature. While in the western world the focus is primarily on the aromatization of space and changes in the atmosphere, smoking in shamanism is used for other purposes: through targeted smoking with certain herbs, a change in the state of consciousness is brought about and a connection to other worlds is made possible. Incense fragrances are still an integral part of religious rituals in the Catholic Church today. What few know: The use of resinous incense was formerly mainly used to mask bad odors from the graves inside the church.

Reasons to smoke with herbs

Dry herbs

If you own a garden, you can grow your own smoked herbs yourself. However, these must first be dried before they can be used for smoking

Whether for esoteric reasons, interest in old customs, cultures or alternative medicine: Even today, smoking with herbs is firmly integrated into everyday life for many people. Some hope for support in their healing process, others want to counteract the stressful everyday life. Even though the effects of herbs have not been scientifically proven, new research has shown that fragrance molecules that we pick up through the nose reach the brain directly, where they affect feelings, moods and the autonomic nervous system. For humans, this is a way of using various herbs targeted to well-being, mood and environment. For example, smoking is often used to calm your thoughts and make you sleep better. But also concentration and creativity can be stimulated by certain herbs. Many make smoking with herbs into a solid ritual within their life and apply it, for example, to birthdays, New Year's Day or relocations. The best known is probably the "fumigation" of rooms, where you try to get rid of dense and heavy energies and bring more ease into his life (and his home).

You need this for smoking with herbs

Utensils for smoking herbs

The right equipment for smoking depends mainly on the smoking method

The right herbs for smoking incense consists of a heat-resistant base, an incense burner on which to place herbs, spices or resins, and a tealight that heats the herbs. If you do not have an incense burner, you can also fill a refractory dish with some sand and smoke it with charcoal. However, you should also have a long pair of pliers or tweezers available and a fan or a large spring to distribute the smoke with it.

The three methods of smoking

To smoke with charcoal

To smoke with charcoal is the traditional method. Unlike smoking with a warmer, however, there is a lot of smoke that is harder to control

1. Smoke with coal

If you are considering the traditional method of smoking, you will need a refractory bowl that will fill you with more than half of the sand. Then hold the charcoal with a pair of tongs over the tealight. Make sure that the edge of the coal protrudes into the flame. As the coal ignites itself, embers start to jump after a few seconds. Here caution is required. If the coal burns, it is put in the sand. With a fan or a pen can accelerate the annealing. The incense may only be applied when the charcoal is light gray or completely white on the outside. Spices should be minced, resins are best prepared in advance with the mortar. It is sufficient to place a knife tip of the incense on the glowing coal and distribute the smoke in the room with the fan or the spring. If desired, can always be refilled.

Tip: If the coal gets too hot, the herbs can burn very quickly. Just sprinkle some sand over the charcoal and then put the incense on it. So the heat is dampened and the fragrance unfolds slower.

Smoke with warmer

A warmer makes it easy to smoke herbs, spices or resins.Since there is no smoke, you can place a warmer, for example, in office rooms, bedrooms or waiting rooms

2. Smoking with a warmer

An easy way to smoke herbs, offers a warmer. In contrast to smoking with charcoal, less smoke is produced, which makes the method much easier for small spaces. Simply place the smoked products on the wire sieve and light the tealight in the warmer. If the tealight is new and has a correspondingly large flame, it can happen that individual Rauchkringel rise to the top. Then either push the incense with your pliers to the edge of the screen or move the candle.

Tip: If you smoke with resins, glued to the screen after some time. You can prevent this by sprinkling a small amount of sand on the wire screen. If you want to clean your glued wire screen, use pliers to hold it directly over a candle flame. As a result, the resin residues inflame, liquefy and burn out. The last remnants can then be easily removed with a wire brush.


Lava stones give off their heat only very slowly and are therefore particularly suitable for smoking with herbs

3rd warmer with lava stones

A warmer with lava stones is perfect for those who smoke mainly with herbs. If you have your own garden and grow and harvest the incense yourself, you can burn a whole handful at a time. You can simply put the herbs, spices, flowers, needles or seeds directly on top. The fragrance unfolds slowly and gently through the heated lava stones.

Various herbs and their effects

  • Mugwort: smells bittersweet, warm-earthy and calming; sells demons, offers protection and blessing, strengthens the intuition, promotes the dream life and strengthens the feminine
  • Thyme: smells tart and spicy; helps with physical and mental weakness and fatigue; is difficult to combine with other herbs
  • Rosemary: smells spicy and refreshing; has a heart-opening, stimulating, cleansing and protective effect; is suitable for "love-smoking"; Helps with depression, letting go and mourning
  • St. John's: smells warm, light, fresh and floral; bringing light and mood (in grief, sadness, fears); opens the mind, gives warmth and security; releases tension and protects against dark energies
  • Lavender: smells fresh and sweet; has a balancing, harmonizing, calming and clarifying effect; creates clarity in thought, brings peace and gentleness; helps to clear visions; is cleansing and cooling
  • Mint: the typical, distinctive fragrance opens the mind for visions and clarifies the thoughts; refreshing, invigorating, energizing for body and mind
  • Sage: smells strongly aromatic, resinous; clears and purifies the atmosphere and the aura, freed of old pollution and hardened feelings that have become anchored in the body; high power of expulsion, formerly used to heal the "obsessed"; promotes centering and concentration; relaxes the lungs, helps against dysphagia, grounds and neutralises odors
  • Fabianaceae (Pichi-Pichi): smells aromatic-resinous with a sweet and sour note; makes euphoric; slightly intoxicating effect
  • Marie Gras: smells fine spicy; It has a very relaxing effect on body and mind, clears the thoughts and stimulates creativity
  • Sumpfporst: smells tart and spicy and slightly resinous; has calming and sleep-inducing effects; traditional ritual plant among Nordic shamans

The following spices need to be crushed in a mortar before smoking:

Mince spices in a mortar

Before spices can be smoked, they should be minced in a mortar

  • Anise: smells spicy; promotes sensitivity and perception; has a harmonizing effect and purifies room air
  • Cardamom: smells fresh, first lemony, later fruity; has a strong mood
  • Cinnamon: spreads the typical Christmas cinnamon smell; has a strengthening, stimulating effect

Video Board: Alternative Smoking Herbs with Hempsley Health.

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