Incense resins are naturally occurring substances such as frankincense, copal, myrrh etc that are harvested from trees. The resin is usually obtained from live trees via “tapping”. This is done in a sustainable way so that the tree continues to thrive.
Fresh resins are often fragrant although some resins do not give much scent off until they are burnt. The best way to burn incense resins is to put them onto a hot charcoal disc. Normally only a sprinkle is needed. If you put too much on top then it can smother the charcoal discs. Allow the discs 5 minutes to get up to temperature before putting the resin on top.
Smudging is a ceremony used to clear away negative energies and to attract ones that are more positive. Native Americans have traditionally used many herbs for this purpose, each one having a different effect on the aura and inner being. You may burn a smudge stick directly from the end (extinguish carefully afterwards), or break off fragments to burn in a container such as a shell. When smudging, try to feel connected with a power greater than yourself. You may say prayers while using a feather, or simply the palm of your hand, to brush the smoke over you.
Smudge sticks can be used for cleansing of the aura, for example before meditation or prayer, or they quite often these days used by body workers and therapists. They can also be used for cleansing a house or dwelling and are often used in this way in Feng Shui.