Auspicious Smoke Offering

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Smoke Offering

Burning plants as an offering + purification ritual has been in practice for millennia, across every culture. The burning of special plants releases the vibrational energy of their qualities, and the smoke is used as offering, carrying prayers and aspirations into the universe. The benefits of performing a smoke offering ritual are numerous ~ generating harmony + peace, healing + protecting physical/spiritual bodies, purifying negative karma + other obstacles, creating sacred space, clearing disruptive energies and honoring our protectors, ancestors + loved ones.

When we perform a smoke offering, our genuine intent, prayer, wishes and aspirations are carried throughout the billionfold universe. Seen and unseen beings, karmic connections + energetic vibrations, are all honored and awoken by the smoke, flame + embers of the offering.

The ingredients in this particular offering were selected for their excellent properties of protection, purification, wish-fulfillment + generation of loving kindness. In general when performing a smoke offering, visualize that the elegant wisps of smoke transform into beautiful offerings, fulfilling all wishes of all beings, carried into the world and manifesting through the unseen forces of nature.

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Auspicious Smoke Offering Practice

Different from lighting incense* or sage in your home, a smoke offering is typically placed outdoors (quite a bit of smoke billows up from the offering). Whereas plants like sage are typically used for purifying the body or spaces, a smoke offering translates into visualizing the smoke transforming into a millionfold different kinds of offerings in the sky. Rather than consuming the smoke, it’s an activity of generating beneficence and generosity to unseen beings.

Place a moderate amount of smoke offering herbs in a bowl or container made of metal {glass or ceramic will break, unless you have a good amount of sand or ash as a barrier}. Gently light the herbs on fire. If a flame emerges, wave air over it, so that the smoke rises up from the embers.

{If you have trouble getting the herbs to ember, you can also add stick/cone incense to encourage it.}

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Visualization

You can visualize the smoke transforming into anything precious that you want to offer: flowers, gemstones, stars, moons, mountains, perfumed waters to bathe in, delicious beverages, fruits, yummy food, music, scents, lights, offering goddesses – really anything you want! Anything that you behold as special, sacred or beautiful is of immense benefit.

All the various beings that you can offer to could include: Teachers, compassionate beings, wisdom holders, protectors + guardians, family, friends, loved ones, ones to whom we owe karmic debts and ones who create obstacles. 

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Prayers/Intentions

Whenever engaging in an offering or meditation practice, it is important to set the intention. These intentions can be as specific or broad as you’d like, as they create the foundation from which the practice arises.

You can make the intention that the act of this auspicious smoke offering:

  • Dispels ignorance + confusion within ourselves and others
  • Dissolves illusions and obstacles to awakening
  • Resolves turmoil, quarreling + jealousy
  • Removes negative signs, bad omens + horoscopes
  • Clears the obstructed doors of the five senses
  • Eases turbulent times
  • Cleanses disturbing emotions
  • Pacifies harmful spirits or those we owe karmic debts to
  • Purifies adverse circumstances, obstacles + illness
  • Pacifies the outer world through the beautiful fragrance traveling in the ten directions


Supports + honors:

  • Wisdom beings of the past, present + future
  • Lineage holders of teachings
  • Protectors of ourselves + loved ones
  • Guardians of sacred places
  • Our parents of the past, present and future
  • Those who act as bridges over rivers and lamps in the darkness
  • Those who watch over our homes + families
  • Those who administer antidotes + treat illness
  • Those who enrich + protect the earth
  • Those who protect trees + crops
  • Those who safeguard accomplishment elixirs + medicinal extracts
  • Those who protect + guide us during travels, transitions + times of strife
  • Those who watch over business + livelihood


Anyone else you want to include!

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Meditation

After generating gratitude and mental offerings through the smoke, bring your attention to the breath. Stabilize you your mind by focusing on how it feels when you inhale/exhale. Continue your mindful-awareness practice for 5-15 minutes, or longer if you’d like.

Dedication

Your dedication is what seals the practice and magnifies the vastness and ripple effect of the benefit. It can be as intricate or simple as you like, for example:

‘May this act of smoke offering fulfill every desire and aspiration, such as long life, health, happiness and wealth, and may the auspiciousness of peace and goodness throughout the universe serve as causes to attain unsurpassed awakening!”

‘May this practice benefit me, my loved ones and all beings.’

By engaging in this practice, may all be auspicious! 

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*You can absolutely use incense, sage, palo santo + other special plants for smoke offering! The intention, visualization and motivation for burning the plants is what differentiates a smoke offering from other cleansing practices.