Health and Wellness

A Quick Guide to Energy Cleansing

Words by Sara Harowitz

Photography by Brit Gill

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Whether it’s the weird vibe in the room after a difficult meeting or the heavy feeling at the end of a long day, energy is palpable. “Good vibes only” has become a trendy mantra as of late, but the root of its meaning is nothing to scoff at—bad energy has a way of creeping in and sticking around.

“If someone is feeling sad or anxious, they will be generating emotional energy that can go out into our chakras, into our aura, and it gets stuck—and then it can feed us more of those emotions,” says Vancouver-based shamanic healer, reiki master, and crystal practitioner Christa Lynn, who acknowledges that the natural materials she works with have been used by cultures around the world for centuries. “Or if a sensitive person was in the presence of someone who was really angry, for instance, let’s say they start feeling irritable for no particular reason, then they absorbed some of that emotional energy. And it could be lingering, for either a few minutes, hours, or days, so it’s very important that we cleanse that. Even cleansing our environment is important so that our environment has a beautiful, high, positive vibration, because that will also affect our health in a good, positive way.”

Scent’s ability to transport us somewhere new is exactly why vitruvi released Ceremony, a new essential oil diffuser blend made with Palo Santo, Cedarwood, and Clary Sage. Cleansing like a new moon, it is best diffused when you need to recharge and let go of the day. In honour of Ceremony, we asked Lynn to outline the basics of energy hygiene.

The 101

Energy cleansing is a great ritual to practice often, Lynn says—especially if you’re feeling certain symptoms that you cannot otherwise explain:

  • Sudden loss of energy
  • Headache
  • Mood swings
  • Sleep disturbance, be it trouble falling asleep or staying asleep
  • Oversensitivity to sounds and sights in your environment
  • Exhibiting the emotions or stresses of someone you have recently been in contact with

As for what to cleanse with, Lynn mentions many sacred plants with cleansing properties: palo santo (the wood or essential oil); sage (dried); frankincense (the incense or essential oil); myrrh (the incense); and white copal (the incense). These can be used individually or in tandem, really depending on each individual’s preferences. The experience should be enjoyable, after all.

Cleansing your own energy

The first thing to do when cleansing the energy of your own body, which Lynn says can be done as often as once a day, is to choose your purifying plant, and then to choose a feather that will act as a wand (the feather can be purchased or found). To demonstrate, Lynn stands up, grabs a stick of palo santo wood, and returns to the middle of the room. “Before you burn it, it’s very important to speak a healing intention to bring about the cleansing process, because it makes it more powerful,” she explains, noting that this is true regardless of what type of cleansing plant you are working with. “The words would be something to this effect, speaking them from your heart and with intention: ‘thank you for cleansing me of all negative energy, unwanted energy, and energetic congestion so that I am cleansed and purified completely.’ Then you light it, blow out the flame so that it’s smoking, and with the feather waft the smoke towards the top of your head, towards your heart, and then down through your aura towards your feet—to cleanse your chakras, to cleanse your aura, to purify your energy fields to a higher, brighter, positive, happier state.”

The main thing to remember is that you start at the top of your body and work your way down. The whole process only takes maybe 30 seconds, after which you can put out the smoke with water or sand and save your cleansing tools to use again next time.

White selenite is another effective tool. Lynn picks up a long wand made of the stone, and it shines iridescently even in the dimmed room. “The wand is almost like a brush,” she says, demonstrating by making sweeping motions—without touching her body—starting at the top of her head and working her way along her arms, under her arms, down her front and back, and along her legs. “What you want to do is brush out your aura and your chakras, sweeping out, brushing out all of that energy congestion, those emotions.” She instructs to keep brushing until you begin to feel lighter and brighter, at which point you can stop, letting your selenite rest in a bed of dry sea salt to cleanse it for your next use.

sage smudging

Finally, there are essential oils. For body energy, Lynn suggests adding a few drops to water in a spray bottle and misting yourself to get the aromatic effects. Try putting 10 drops of Ceremony Essential Oil Blend and 5 drops of Frankincense Essential Oil into a 30-millilitre spray bottle; fill it the rest of the way with water, shake it well, and lightly mist your face and arms as needed. Breathe deep.

Cleansing the energy of your space

Cleansing a space—be it your office or your home—is similar to working with your own body energy. Choose your plant and grab your feather, then open some windows “to create ventilation so that it’s not getting too smoky; it’s a practical aspect but it’s also so that any energy can leave through the windows,” Lynn explains. “A good way to start is at your door, so you start at the front door of your place and you would speak the intention: ‘thank you palo santo wood (or thank you sage, or thank you incense) for cleansing all negative energy, unwanted energy, and energy congestion from this room (or this home, or this space) so that it is cleansed and purified completely.’” Then light it, using your feather to waft the smoke into corners, closets, and other tight spaces. “The smoke will cleanse and purify and transform any emotions left in the space, any negative vibes,” Lynn says, “into beautiful, bright, positive energy.”

She recommends doing this once a week, along with anytime your space is host to a fight with a loved one, an increase in visitors, or a change in residents. An easy tip? Make it part of your weekly cleaning routine so that it becomes second nature along with vacuuming and dusting.

Two other methods Lynn suggests for spatial cleansing are bells (ring them into tight corners to break up stagnant energy) and amethyst (say your intention and place the stone in the middle of the room, letting it create positive vibes and purify your space even when you’re at work). And of course essential oils can be effective here, too, when added to a diffuser (hello, Ceremony).

The bottom line

Just like your physical body and your mental state, your energy needs care now and again. But at the end of the day, do what feels right for you. Energy cleansing shouldn’t be one more thing on your to-do list—it should be a ritualistic experience that serves you in the best way possible. A special Ceremony, if you will.