Why Are Incense Sticks Lighted?
Dhoop is one of the sixteen ways of offering worship to a deity, known as shodshopchãr pujã. It possess certain properties which purify the air and induce good or positive vibrations in the brain. This helps a person concentrate more easily during meditation or a pujã ritual.
A philosophical moral of the burning incense stick is that, just as it burns away to ashes while simultaneously pervading the air with fragrance, an aspirant should sacrifice his life to serve others and mould it such that its fragrance inspires others.
Burning incense sticks is an effective way to beat stress, encourage balance, and breathe new life into old routines. In the hustle and bustle of modern society, it can be challenging to make time for ourselves and escape from the busy pace of everyday life. Burning incense is a pleasant sensory experience that people have valued from time immemorial, and the practice is being revived more and more as people realize how important it is to attend to often neglected aspects of wellbeing, such as mental and spiritual clarity.
Burning incense has a salient impact on our environment and surroundings. The fragrance of incense sticks changes our emotions, perception, and moods. Incense sticks can energize, relax, and harmonize. The resins and botanicals in incense help us to reconnect with nature and plants as a vital life source. We can activate visual and auditory awareness by accentuating incense use with ambient lighting and soothing background music. The stimulating and invigorating effects certain types of incense sticks may be helpful in fortifying our overall potential and energy when we are weak, discouraged, or fatigued.
Incense has been employed for medicinal and aromatherapy purposes since ancient times. Burning incense sticks frees fragrant chemicals into the air and has a pharmacological effect when inhaled. Incense burning was used successfully to alleviate respiratory illnesses, muscle tension, rheumatism, pain, and insomnia. People have also used certain types of incense as a disinfectant, such as lavender incense during childbirth. Incense burning is even more advantageous when accompanied with other therapies, such as massage, color therapy, and psychotherapy.
How To Use Incense Sticks?
Incense Sticks burn easily by lighting one end, waiting several seconds until the tip glows brightly, then gently blowing or fanning out the flame with a stiff sheet of paper or feather.
The incense stick must stand in a fire-proof incense burner such as an incense bowl or cup. The burner should adequately accommodate the thickness and length of the incense sticks.
The Future For Incense Sticks
The methods for incense production have not changed much over time though the assortment of fragrances available has changed. In the past, only naturally occurring materials were included but modern technology has enabled the development of synthetic fragrances which have made their way into incense scents available.
The frequency of use of incense sticks is highly variable by culture. In India and the East, it is common for several incense sticks to be burned every day at home, whereas, in America, incense users generally burn incense sticks much less frequently. Natural incense may have a future advantage over synthetic air fresheners as trends toward holistic natural living continue to take hold. The increasing popularity of meditation, yoga, and aromatherapy in an increasingly stimulated Western world in need of relaxation bodes well for the increased use of natural incense sticks for therapeutic benefits.
Meditation And Incense Sticks
Incense sticks are frequently used either in meditation or to prepare an area for meditation practice. Once the brain associates the meditation practice with the aroma of incense sticks, an important associative trigger has been established. The brain can spring into action once it senses the aroma and ready itself for the practice. This subtle priming by the incense stick aroma gets the mind in a certain zone where it has been conditioned to better focus. As such, incense sticks can be an integral part of preparing a meditation space. Experimenting a bit is the best way to figure out what works well for each one of us. Many people and cultures regularly perfume areas used for meditation by burning incense sticks.
Incense sticks can also be burned during the meditation session itself. Incense sticks are particularly popular for use in mantra-based meditation where the mind's focus is pinned to the mantra and is less sensitive to the subtlety of the other senses. As such, incense stick burning can be found in Vedic and other types of mantra meditation practices.
The use of incense sticks pervade Buddhist ritual practice. Outside of most Buddhist temples there are incense sticks burning freely, the burning of incense sticks in Buddhism can have different meanings, ranging from an offering to the Buddha’s, , sangha and Dharma and as symbols of unity in itself.
Incense Sticks In The Household
Incense sticks have very popular use within the household. Incense sticks are often lit and carried throughout the rooms of the house to spread the aroma. Burning incense sticks within the house is often associated with purifying the area. Purifying the rooms of the house with incense sticks can take different forms depending on the culture. It can range from chasing away evil spirits, to seeking divine blessing to merely prepping the space in accordance with cultural and religious custom. The aroma from incense sticks also brings aromatic conformity to the space and can be a useful mental relaxation trigger telling the brain that we are home.
Benefits Of Burning Incense?
- Not just an air freshener
- Enhancing Concentration & Focus
- Stimulating Creativity
- Increasing Motivation
- Boosting Confidence
- Preventing Infections
- Relieving Headaches
- Fighting Depression
- Reducing Anxiety & Tension