Smelling Smudge: The Divine Scent of Juniper
My juniper smudge came in the mail today. Forgive the Edward Abbey overload, but ever since I read his description of the scent of a juniper fire…
“The fire. The odor of burning juniper is the sweetest fragrance on the face of the earth, in my honest judgment; I doubt if all the smoking censers of Dante’s paradise could equal it. One breath of juniper smoke, like the perfume of sagebrush after rain, evokes in magical catalysis, like certain music, the space and light and clarity and piercing strangeness of the American West. Long may it burn.”
…I have had an intense desire to experience it (After reading that, don’t you too?) So, I finally broke down and bought one. Yes, yes, I could have just gone out in my backyard and picked a branch, dried it, and burned it, but that would make too much sense, plus, isn’t there some sort of smudging process I would miss out on (Oh yes, the being patient part)? Anyway, so I lit it this afternoon …and oh my God…yeees (Deep inhale, low sultry voice). The sense of smell, it is astounding, and here are some fun facts:
• Research has shown that smell is the sense most linked to our emotional recollection. So, when linked to a product, that can reap dividends (Witchy Mama will be stoked)
• Studies show that 75% of emotions are triggered by smell which is linked to pleasure, well-being, emotion, and memory
• The sense of smell is the first of all our senses to develop. Even before we are born, our sense of smell is fully formed and functioning.
• As it turns out, the phrase wake up and smell the coffee is truer than you would imagine. When you are asleep, your sense of smell shuts down. You can only smell the coffee after you have woken up.
• You can smell anew every month as your scent cells are renewed every 28 days, so every four weeks you get a new “nose”.
• Smell is the most sensitive of the senses. People can remember smells with 65% accuracy after a year, while visual recall is about 50% after three months.
Moral of the story? If you want to remember something, or be remembered, use a scent. If you haven’t tried Juniper, I highly recommend it.