Here is a real-life story from a friend and customer, Nancy who gave me permission to share her and her son's story. A few years ago, I had gone digging for quartz crystals in Arkansas. I gave out a few of those crystals to a few people, Nancy was one of them. Here is the message she sent me: "I have to share with you what a gift that wee crystal that you gave me a while back has been for me & my oldest!! Crazy guy goes & buys a Hearse from a funeral home that he does business...
You don't need to whiter teeth, longer or shorter hair, more money, more education, less cellulite, YOU are fine, just as you are. You are ready to start walking towards the thing you want.
If you've been waiting to "FIX" yourself, consider yourself FIXED. You are the way you're meant to be right now, that doesn't mean you can't and won't evolve, improve, and change, but that's the stuff you do while you're DOING the things.
You are enough just as you are right now. Life is SHORT! You better do what's in your heart while you can because one day you won't have the option.
One reason why I don’t think we should call what we’re doing Smudging or Saging is because we’re not doing what those words represent. Yes, it might look like it because of the similar elements & we burn them, but that’s where the similarities end.
To my limited knowledge, the Saging or Smudging ceremonies actually start with gathering and preparing the elements in special ways. The plants need to be collected in particular ways, along with certain blessings and prayers before any burning occurs. The rituals as I have read are typically done in groups led by a holy person of that group. The ceremonies are done in specific ways according to that tribes traditions and teachings.
The Native People believe these plants are medicine & many will not sell it as their culture believes in giving healthcare versus selling it (maybe we could learn something here)
There are many other issues to unpack, but in my opinion one of the deepest ones is that, up until relatively recently there were actual laws in place that made it ILLEGAL for Native people to practice their cultural ceremonies.
Only in 1978 the Indian Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) was passed & gave back religious freedoms. So for LESS than 50 years American Indians have been "granted permissions" to practice their religious rights. (Almost unbelievable)