Smudging is a way of using smoke from burning herbs as a way to cleanse the body, an object, or a given area of negative influences. The three most common plant materials for smudging are sage of all types, cedar and sweetgrass.
There are many types of sage: salvia, white sage, sagebrush are three of the most common. Many times, Sage is burned in smudging ceremonies to drive out evil spirits, negative thoughts, and feelings away from where the ceremony is being held.
Just like sage there are many common types that are used often such as Western Red Cedar, or California Incense Cedar. Cedar is burnt while praying to deities, in meditation or in house blessings. It works both as a purifier and as a way to attract good energy in your direction.
Sweetgrass is often used by native americans and is braided like hair braids. It can be burnt by lighting the end of it or by shaving little bits of it off onto a piece of charcoal in a censor. Sweetgrass is burnt after smudging with sage to welcome in good influences after the bad have been driven out.
Most often smudging is done by burning clippings in a charcoal censor or if the herb is bundled into a wand, you can light then end that isn't woody and use it that way. Direct the smoke with your hands or a peyote (feather) over the person or thing you want to smudge. If you can see aura's look for the discolored places in the aura and direct the smoke towards those places. f
For cleansing a house, first offer cedar smoke to the four directions outside the house, then take a sage bough and go throughout the inside of the house making sure the smoke penetrates every nook and cranny of the house
Smudging should be done with care and respect, and in an attitude of love. Show your respect and honor to the plants that the earth has provided for our healing, and they will in return favor us by keeping us well and free from disease and negative energy.