Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sacred Fires & Summer Smudges

Well as You can clearly see I have not been doing very well with my get offline agenda lol . It may be the rainy cool weather I cannot get into the garden  or other activities as we'd like so writing & reading it is . I also love to focus on my writings on my natural living etc. and take a break from our serious work . Not that working with trees, herbs etc. is not work but it is very therapeutic when dealing with issues of abuse etc. get to much .
 So I have been really wanting to have my fullmoon fire but I have not had an actual fire since April because of the rain ! Yes whenever we have had a sunny break the work has been so tiresome I just have not had time to prepare our fires. I miss them . Our province & all the prairie provinces have had horrid flooding so that is how bad the rain is here .
 So I have been making up our little stick bundles to sell to city folk who may live in apartment, condo or areas they cannot have big fire pits . These are perfect little bundles for sacred , festival & celebration fires . Fire is an element of course that helps us connect with God and helps us to honour in our prayer time , ritual or celebration . Of course there are also prayer candles is a very much smaller version of the sacred prayer fire . I wish to help people who live in the hustle bustle of city life to have a chance to connect and have a place to have access to real , natural & local supplies which our Creator gave to All peoples .
Two people I have been very drawn to work with lately are ST.Brigid & ST.Hildegard

I really wish I could find more regarding ST.Brigid and her fire . It seems so strange there would not be more written about this saint and her connection to this element considering her efforts and those who followed her instructions to keep the fire lit . I have always thought it was her way of honouring our Lord to acknowledge the light of God forevermore . However I was also thinking how important fire was back then for ones survival , keeping the spiritual out of it fire was a very valued resource for heat , preparation of food , metal work etc. So I imagine her to be a very practical , sensible woman ☺
 I love this pic of ST.Hildegard with what looks like flames coming out of her head ! My goodness how dramatic a portrait ! I like to think of this picture of her and the element of fire as well , her thought being lit up by the holy spirit , on fire for the Lord ! I have just found this book Holistic Healing
on google reader . I so wanted to order the book as I do not like online version of books but it is no longer available . So far the book is wonderful . I have really only worked with Hildegard regarding herbs so it is a new thing to discover the elements with her . 
When collecting wood it is most often driftwood & dead fall . Keeping in mind just like harvesting for tree medicines we are aware of amounts to take. One cannot take all the driftwood from the shores because this driftwood naturally makes a barrier and protects the lake bank from damage during those strong north winds . Equally remembering that dead fall , birch bark , moss etc. all are apart of the decomposition cycle within the boreal forest to promote new growth so selecting wood from a managed woodlot or provincial designated cutting area is a must.

I know I have posted this before but it gives a good shot of wood selection , we have spruce , ash, willow , birch etc.

This is the nice little basket I used for display in selling the little stick bundles . There are some wonderful books on learning the different properties of trees as well as what they represent however one of my fav is by the authors is Fred Hagender he has done so much to promote education and knowledge of trees.  

There we go ! Now that is a flame !

We use our fire for preparing items and cooking and prayer etc.
We have fire to celebrate the seasons . This was our spring equinox fire in which I burned our Christmas wreath and a few other natural items we no longer would use .

We celebrated with making bannock from the recipe in Baking Bread with Children  the author Warren Lee Cohen has been very encouraging to ds14 who is now trying to create his own clay oven !

This is my absolute fav pic and fav prayer fire out at my Mother's place .

This is the beautiful summer smudge I created . I try and make a new smudge just as I do teas for the season . I add a handful to my fire to smudge myself or add it to my shell I use for smudging the home & yard . So this is why the element of fire and smudge go so well together in one post ☺
 Smudging is such a universal spiritual practice . How cool is that ! It is not just a concept used by one culture or religion , I love this how we find the connection in all creation ☺

I collect the ingredients both from our garden and
from the wild

I love the whole process of growing , harvesting /drying & preparing the flowers , herbs , trees , barks , roots ., it is not just therapeutic to help others but also very spiritual & therapeutic process for the people doing this work .  

a bit of everything

Really for those who do not like or can't handle smudge in the form of smoke this smells fantastic as a potpourri . It is so beautiful for the eye just to look at so I wish to encourage you to try making your own seasonal personal smudges  I think you will be quite inspired by the process & the outcome ☺
 enjoy !


Mother's Moon's Message said...

Like you I have grown to love the process of gathering, and drying the various flowers, herbs and such I use.... I consider it all more personal when it is from my garden

AkasaWolfSong said... are a woman after my own heart Precious One...I loved this sharing this morning!


Millie said...

What a wonderful post. I love surrounding myself with herbs and flowers grown here. It makes everything more personal. I too have had so much rain that it's been hard to get things done, including fires. Maybe soon it will slow down a bit.

rox said...

Oh isn't it inspiring ! new growth ! I just went out and helped comfrey out he was falling over and struggling so I trimmed him a bit ☺
Millie I'm trying here feels a bit of a struggle like as winter , I am truely a sunny day gal at heart . I've also been ignoring the fact I probably have a sinus infection , it is summer after all how can I have a sinus infection !

Anishinaabekwe said...

Beautiful post!