Wishing You Joyous Holidays!

I hope this holiday finds you enjoying some quality chill time with family and friends.

Fall through Winter Solstice have been very busy times at Sacred Land Sage. The months have been filled with holiday prep and unexpected harvests: the rains brought unexpected growth to our Natives garden, especially the Black Sage bushes. They have literally grown crazy abundant with recent storms here in Northern California! No drought to be crying about now ;).  I must keep the Black Hummingbird Salvia bushes trimmed now- so they do not overshadow the White Sage Salvia apiana bushes-that always require full sun.

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I’ve also been busy refilling and restocking; formulating new sage blends, bath salts, teas, oil infusions, and tinctures. Stay tuned for more new items coming this week. blend-cedarsage0093

Isn’t this leather bowl gorgeous? It was made by my friend Julie, a master leather craftswoman. I sent her photos of the most incredible rock art stone walls along the Colorado River, Moab, Utah, and she in turn began incorporating the designs into her work.

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She said this wall inspired several new pieces. Check out her amazing work on Etsy- on HollyHawk Designs.

There are also 2 holiday promotions in my Etsy shop right now, and one on my Website: Sacredland Sage.  In my Etsy store, spend $40 and pay with Paypal- and get a free smudge bundle. I will also keep active the Solstice coupon through Dec. 31.  Orders over $50 can use Solstice coupon- 12% off (see the shop announcement for details). And Bonus; Etsy is also awarding a $10 coupon if you spend $50 in one shop- so this is a double great deal!

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On my Website, enjoy low flat rate shipping in the US. I am slowly stocking this shop with more items, so do check back often this week. And if there is something you are looking for on the website- let me know with a message to this post.

I’ve stocked new natural, locally made incense: Premium Smudge grade incense sticks, all natural, and made with plants, stems, resins, and essential oils. There are several varieties in the incense section of my shop on Etsy, like these Premium 5-Resin blend Smudge Sticks (myrhh, frankincense, white sage, copal, palo santo).

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Wishing you all a Joyous Holiday Season! Stay warm, and healthy. I have many Smudge Kits in the shop now for your New Year’s Smudging Ceremonies, which we celebrate through the Tibetan New Year. I’ll post more about those in my next post.

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After the Science

I’ve been setting aside one day a week to wake early and study in the wee morning hours. This is bringing pure pleasure~ to peel away from the sleeping household, sip my favorite Root 66 tea, while the sun rises over books on the kitchen table.

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Crystals and energy.  Finally. Finally, a chance to study the things I have always wanted to learn about; after the science career- crystals; after pragmatics- chance and the invisible.  (Ha! great band name… 😉

I cannot speak highly enough about this Crystal Certification course;/ Crystal Therapy in Subtle Energy Work Course.   I’ve looked for years for the right class. Instructor Tana is a true educator- trained, impassioned, and focused to present and deliver an in-depth college-level, accredited course that’s practical in the end. Except there’s no trudging off to class with heavy books; it is all taught via computer/phone/pvt.FB group.

The course is self-paced (we can take up to a year) but I don’t want it to end…!  This class has been a sea change for me personally, and most definitely for my business; helping me fine-tune how I factor in minerology in working with crystals for customers/ clients. The class is grounded in geology and mineral chemistry, before traipsing through the latest in energy science theory, with loads of vetted references from varied authors.

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Then we move on to popular healing modalities unknown and known (i.e chakra theories; there are several including Tibetan, Tsalagi, and Mayan!)  Above all- we get access to instructor Tana one-on-one.  But warning: this isn’t a class for the casual delver; there is much to read, absorb, think about, and homework! Yup. HW. Ok- back to it.

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Source: SacredLandSage

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Happy Full Moon and Tibetan New Year

Tonight, it is both a full Snow moon, and also the 15th day of the Tibetan New Year, or Losar. Tibetan traditions of the New year have always appealed to me, in part because of the duration of celebrations marking a new year- several weeks before and after the New Moon. My Tibetan friends tell me that there is a full month of preparation before the actual first round of Losar New Year festivities- which fall on the 3 days of the New Moon in February (Feb 9-11 this year). This preparation time leading up to New Moon Losar is a busy time, filled with cleaning rituals in the home, ridding of the old and outdated, as well as abundant purification rituals that include burning cleansing plants like Juniper and cypress.

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On the 3 days of Losar new moon, there is much dancing, sacred and secular activities, hanging new prayer flags, making offerings to Lamas, Protector Spirits of all Directions, consulting oracles, cooking special foods, and making beer. Renewal ceremonies follow this for 15 more days, until the first full moon of the year, today, when everything winds down with the Chunga Choepa, or Butter Lamp Festival.

During Losar, the Tibetan celebration of the new year, we did not drink champagne to celebrate. Instead, we went to the local spring to perform a ritual of gratitude. We made offerings to the nagas, the water spirits who activated the water element in the area. We made smoke offerings to the local spirits associated with the natural world around us.  Tenzin Wangyal

Why we in the west celebrate the dawn of a new year for only a day or 2 is baffling to me. It feels right, in body and spirit, to celebrate the end of one cycle and the start of another over many moons, or at least for several weeks- beginning with the Winter Solstice in December. More than the end of a calendar, it feels more about changes in the earth, elements, and skies as reflected in our lives.

Practically, for me, December and January are my busiest work months, and beginning in January, I feel that only then can I begin to shut down, sleep more, and think of cycles and rituals. Like a bear perhaps, the body craves hibernation, introspection (new creative forays begin in retreat), and a general re-charging of body, mind, and spirit. This is also the time when I crave a seasonal cleanse akin to “Spring Cleaning”, but before true Spring, as so many of us do. Renewal is also making room with hope and anticipation of the new.

So if like me, your celebrations of a New Year are ongoing, or if you haven’t started yet- no worries! Take your time. Take weeks or several moons in fact- to rest, reflect, and renew body and soul before the earth warms up, the skies lighten, and buds begin to sprout.

Here are a few ideas for celebrating a New year via Smudging ritual with Plants, whenever the time feels right for you.

1. Out with the Old: Juniper, Cedar, Cypress are used all over the world to cleanse away old energies; to deep cleanse, and renew. You can burn loose leaf juniper and berries on charcoal, or “smudge” bundles; wands of Cedar or Juniper. The evergreens are strong, so I recommend starting small and burn or offer over several days especially if there has been long term illness, negativity, or persistent malaise. You can find individual bundles in my Sacred Land Sage shop on Etsy, or a variety pack Purify- a 4-pack of evergreens and sages.

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2. Refresh with Sweetgrass:  (Sweet Grass or Sweetgrass) to me is the epitome of fresh, inviting joy and good health and abundance. Every year I hang a new braid of fragrant North American Sweet Grass in my car, and another near or at the threshold of my front door. Sweet Grass is such a wonderful Plant Spirit filled with sweet blessings. It has a spicy vanilla-esque scent and does not have to be burned to be enjoyed. Nearly all North American Native Tribes have stories about how the Good Spirits cannot resist the scent and will always favor those who offer it. Sweet Grass invites goodness and is my favorite plant spirit to offer in gratitude. I carry sweetgrass in the shop from 2 areas of Canada right, and have a listing with 2 or 5 braids.

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3. Crumble Old Smudge Bundles outside: This is an Optional practice, but if you have used one bundle all year before (large bundles can last awhile) for one purpose, and if you feel that you are in a different place or situation now, don’t throw it away- crumble up old herb bundles and offer them back to the earth. Earth Mother will appreciate an offering gift, and this is also a symbolic way of ridding of the old and starting fresh. You can also burn old smudge bundles in a fire place or campfire (safely of course ;).

4. Offer a special Smudge Blend to mark the New year. Just like Days of the Dead celebrated in Mexico and the Southern US in late Oct, where a incense resin or Copal is burned to mark the days, you can also reserve special plants for your New Year smudging rituals as well. I created smudge blend Abundance Blend just for this purpose; it has cedar, CA white sage, sweet grass, sandalwood, and lots of other sacred ingredients chosen for the type of year it is (i.e. year of the Fire Dragon, Wood Goat, or Water Monkey.) I change it up a little every year with resins, plants, flowers, and essential oils to represent the elements at play and the balance wished for in the coming year. It also comes with a Tibetan Crystal point, from Tibet.

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There are many rituals around the world for purification and renewal!  I’d love to hear about your rituals with plants in comments to this post.

Happy Smudging in the New Year!

Sacred Land Sage-Happy Birthday to Us!

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Hello World! “Houston we have SAGE!!”

Aaaha!! Well, Sacred Land Sage is a todllering 2-Years old this month (squeeee!!) and some have told me that it’s about time that I stepped up to chat with the world about my young lil’ project, my BIG PASSION, Sacred Land Sage, and ALL-things-SAGE: growing ceremonial sages, native sages around the world, making Smudge Kits, and the various global and cultural traditions that inspire rituals with Sacred Plants. All those things that I go on and on about with them. 😉 Yes. Here we are!

I never dreamed that my personal smudge blends or studies of Sacred Plants used across the Americas (the world!) would strike a chord with so many others. Now, with over 2,400 sales at Sacred Land Sage on Etsy, and the dozens of questions I receive, it is clear: MANY believe in and NEED small rituals with sacred plants, just as I do; to create sacred space; to honor our our lives, find balance, and re-connect with Earth, the Elements, to Spirit- whatever we believe.

We all want to feel blessed. My vision in offering ceremonial sages and blends via Sacred Land Sage, is to offer simple treasures of the earth, Sages Stones, and Smudge supplies for Blessing ourselves and spaces. These are tools to empower you to create your own rituals. You may need a ritual to ground, center, celebrate, connect to the Earth or Sky via Sacred Smoke, honor the 4 Directions, or feel the movement of Energy in your life and circle. We all know best what we need when we take time to stop and listen.

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My journey with sacred plants and stones started eons ago during childhood, among the sandy-red rocks, creatures, and plants of the Arizona desert. As a child I could feel something eternal about the desert. Desert survival classes were required for pre-schoolers then, but I could feel more: the Desert was teaming with Spirits. They were everywhere; their stories told in arrowheads, broken seashells, jumping cholla, sweet sages, and coyotes just-passing-through. At 4, I remember my friend had his Pueblo uncle visit. He was the first to “smudge” me and my friend with sage plants. It was an experience I’ll never forget- the strange smell and the way he swept dried plants over us; I remember holding my breath waiting for something to happen. I remember him telling me, “Child, breathe.” He took us out with him sometimes to show us the different “sacred plants” and demonstrate things like “gift before gathering” (we gave our favorite stones), and how to find “iron food of the earth”.

I became obsessed with collecting iron filings with magnets, collecting berries and plants, and never really told anyone why. Although at this age I was too young to understand what sacred meant, or why we were gathering plants and stones for any other reason than that they were pretty treasures, I never forgot the smoke or the feather “uncle” used, or that low rhythmic singing voice chanting words I couldn’t understand. I will always remember how delicately he handled those plants, his conviction that all things carry a Spirit within “like an egg”. And though I left my first desert home so long ago, I was given a gift: the knowledge that Earth’s treasures will always “take us home” again. Always.

This is what inspires my personal Sacred Sage blends, and Sacred Land Sage.

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