is smudging cultural appropriation

Recently, Sephora advertised a bohemian “witch kit” with white sage included. White Sage and other smudge products (burning sweet grass, palo santo, etc. I am indigenous and I believe that it is a beautiful thing that is positive and good. She says that cultural appropriation “runs rampant” but that the lines between appropriation and adoption will always be blurred. Recommended Websites and Forums. “Cultural Smudging:” Appreciation and Appropriation of Black Culture through Music Paige Burditt Submitted under the supervision of Dr. Josephine Lee to the University Honors Program at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts, magna cum laude in English. He listens to and assists anyone who prays to Him. Resource Use and Cultural Appropriation. According to Indigenous Corporate Training Inc.: “Smudging is traditionally a ceremony for purifying or cleansing the soul of negative thoughts of a person or place.”. The most important takeaway from this post is to respect sage and the original Native American practice of burning it to smudge. I am treating this space like a diary and a repository for my brain. In the end, if you actually study the religions you are taking things from. So obviously, it’s not ideal if we non-Indigenous people continue using it how and at the rate we do. But do we know why we use it? It just means I am ignorant and using words incorrectly. In other words, closed religion does not mean what most people think it means. Depending on the region, Indigenous practices include tobacco, sweetgrass, and cedar. And we’ve already done enough. This is cultural appropriation, and it’s harmful to Native communities. One could also make the argument that the use of the image of Our Lady of Guadeloupe by anyone other than a Mexican Catholic is cultural appropriation. Ahhh… do you love sage as much as I do? Maybe I’m misjudging something, but I’m a bit afraid that the comments might go in an unfortunate direction. Saining practices, similar to smudging, were carried out primarily to remove influences of negative spirits on people, places, objects, and livestock. But in no way educate themselves about Their true worship, by members of clergy associated with Their original religion. There’s been a lot of interesting comments, with a broad array of viewpoints and insights. Look into smoke cleansing, sound cleansing, light cleansing, things that exist within your own cultures. Since my family didn’t travel much, it wasn’t until I was older and moved to CA that I really realized how rare it is for a region’s Native American culture to be celebrated, especially to the degree it is in NM. For instance, it takes a tremendous amount of plant material to produce just one drop of essential oil. If you were to completely copy the way that ancient ritual was commenced then that would be appropriation. But there will always remain the thornier question of cultural appropriation and smudging. Likewise, simply calling something a word used by another culture or religion is not cultural appropriation. While it may be difficult to always know what is and what isn’t cultural appropriation- we can recognize its existence. appropriation-free-witchery. As stated previously, certain people may still consider something culturally appropriative while others of the same culture may no. Just as to learn certain form of divination used in Hatian Vodou and Ifa one must be appropriately initiated. and the cultural significance of smudging and how it relates to the Medicine Wheel. Now the national conversation has begun to shift to focusing on the abused minorities in our country, so no more excuses: let’s all take a moment to think about our sage. If you are unsure why you should make this shift, I highly recommend reading Smudge and the Cultural Appropriation Issue, Language Has Power: On Smudging And Appropriation… If you’re non-indigenous, should you even be using palo santo as a spiritual aid? It’s hugely popular in the (predominately white) yoga and spiritual communities. In Shamanism, Cultural Appropriation is taking the spiritual practices of other cultures and using them as your own. Native American Smudging typically consists of white sage, cedar, tobacco, feathers and either a shell or clay dish used for burning. Use of white sage and the term smudging by Non-Natives is cultural appropriation. Smudging is a spiritual ceremony performed by Indigenous people around the world. I remember distinctly the first time I decided to smudge in my dorm room in college. As many forms of religous abuse can come outside of cultural appropriation. However, cultural appropriation has been a regular, integrated practice in neo-paganism for so long that folks appropriating often experience denial or resistance when confronted with the fact they are perpetrators. Stop claiming that you can smudge because that’s a “Wiccan thing”. It’s never sat right, but I didn’t look as closely as I/we should have. As an Indigenous woman, it’s important for me to inform you that using the word ‘smudge’ contributes to cultural appropriation. But while sage bundles are popping up everywhere, education about this sacred medicine’s Indigenous roots is not. More literacy is needed. Here’s where the cultural appropriation steps in: using herbs that are sacred to a culture while disregarding the rest of that culture’s richness is appropriation and an aspect of colonialism. The way it smells, the calm energy shift in the air after its been burned… I’ve long been a fan. It was illegal for Natives to practice their religion (including smudging) until 1978 in the U.S. It’s something they’ve had to fight for. Other times it’s the use of a particular ingredient bought from non-native sources- like White Sage. Cultural and spiritual appropriation is insidious, and a lot of white people (such as myself) can’t actually see it because it’s all around us in our culture, and we have been taught it’s acceptable. It doesn't matter how many people call something cultural appropriation. Palo Santo and Cultural Appropriation. Smudging is likely not going to be some new-age practitioner waving a bundle of white sage tied up with string to clear a space or themselves of negative energy. Palo Santo and Cultural Appropriation. Over the last few centuries, smudging has become recognized and practised by non-Indigenous peoples. This is a complicated subject and my opinion is that I am a US citizen, born into a culture described as a "melting pot". It’s what’s in these photos. From the appropriation of headdresses and moccasins, to textiles and beadwork, ... it broadly outlawed Indigenous religious and cultural activities, of which smudging is an integral part. When we make definitive, broad statements, we open ourselves to a lot of scrutiny. Walker notes that not all Native cultures burn sage for prayer, which is known as smudging. In some cases, this has led to the sale of fake smudging tools and their use in ceremonies that are culturally and spiritually insensitive and inauthentic. Cultural appropriation is "taking or using from a culture that is not your own, especially without showing you understand or respect this culture." Similarly, someone who just incorporates an aspect of religion or culture just because it is edgy, fun, or what they want to do. You will still find people telling you, you have no business doing it. All of whom I have never heard express an issue with someone using the term smudging. Say it with me now: Smudging is not Wiccan. Our modern understanding of cultural appropriation is highly individualised. As an Indigenous woman, it’s important for me to inform you that using the word ‘smudge’ contributes to cultural appropriation. White sage is the most commonly sold because it’s the most aesthetically-pleasing form of sage. All day long I can wave a candle, some incense and water in front of a Deities face and call it a puja or an aartik. Without paying respect to its roots, approaching it properly, and seeking correct guidance. For instance, people who want to worship a certain Deity from certian pantheon. Refrain from indulging in these practices if you are not an Indigenous person, and do not buy into the trend of it, especially without educating yourself on … Azealia Banks has referred to this as a “cultural smudging." Sharing everything you need to know to heal your mental + physical health and lead a fired-up life! So when someone can give you a valid reason you shouldn't be doing something, listen to them. Live your life boldl, New Year, New Moon — New Event! Let’s be clear on that from the get-go. Plant Databases. The act of burning things to energetically cleanse and protect our energy field and surroundings spans across nations and cultures. But while sage bundles are popping up everywhere, education about this sacred medicine’s Indigenous roots is not. Plant Research. Cultural appropriation is an issue I’ve really only been aware of for the last few years, but when I encounter it now, my response ranges from an internal cringe to a lengthy rant, depending on the situation and who’s around me. I’ve gotten most of the sticks I’ve used when visiting home in NM, and those not-white-sage bundles look much more like regular leaves. You can practice smoke cleansing with different kinds of wood and herbs. But sage is currently by far the most common in the wellness world. I’m a yoga teacher in Southern California—and I see it being used and sold everywhere. For instance, one could easily make the argument that the use of a rosary by a non-catholic is cultural appropriation. Due to its current trendiness, white sage is being over-harvested along the Southern California coast, harming the land and making it harder to find, thus increasing its cost. Sage, dream catchers, and Kachina dolls are literally sold in kiosks in our small airport. Recently, Sephora advertised a bohemian “witch kit” with white sage included. Beliefs and practices are not based on feelings. Read our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy to get more information and learn how to set up your preferences. Bottomline: Smudging is hardly the homogeneous aberration we of the global west have made of it. Smudging is a ritual practiced by indigenous people of North America and Canada. You don’t need sage to do it. Appropriation allows for major contributions of a minority group to be absorbed into that of the dominant group. We should have a conversation about cultural appropriation when it comes to this. Being a Wiccan does not give you the right to appropriate Native culture. And can we all agree that sage should no longer be sold at the checkout counters of expensive (white) clothing boutiques? There has been a lot of conversation around appropriation of certain practices across the world by westerners. Cultural appropriation is not difficult to understand. Importantly it’s a cultural relevant practice and is one available for folks who work within the Scottish folk magic diaspora. Just be careful and respectful I say. Maybe. It does not, and in academic circles, cannot form the base of an accusation. , also called smudging, Chakras, and a religion with some practices within which are closed someone... Are based on teachings, evidence, and clove of clergy associated with their religion... 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