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With the white-hot real estate market and so many people moving from place to place, making a house feel like a home can be challenging. Previous owners may leave but pieces of them remain from their overall sense of style, to their paint color preferences and sometimes even furniture. While renovating changes those things, cleansing the energy of a space requires a different kind of work.
While this might sound dubiously mystical, according to a 2018 article in the Journal of Traditional Chinese Medical Sciences, the invisible energy that can be felt in a home is real. “It is difficult to directly observe the operation of energy, but we can indirectly observe and measure it. In fact, indirect measurement is a commonly used modern scientific method of observing energy. A simple example of indirect observation is the measurement obtained using a mercury thermometer. The thermometer registers changes in mercury volume that are affected by heat and converts the change in thermal energy to a change in mercury volume.”
To make a space truly feel like one’s own, it’s important to cleanse the old energy and bring in positive new energy, says Neelou Malekpour, author of the gorgeously illustrated book The Art Of Sacred Smoke and founder of Smudged. “Each home is different depending on the circumstances of the previous owners and the home itself. If there was a traumatic event like a difficult divorce, death, or violence in any way, energy like that can require more cleansing.”
I recently spoke with Malekpour about how to cleanse old energy from a home, as well as how to bring in new and positive energy in into a space.
Homes abundant with natural light are always more desirable and often more expensive than properties that lack natural light. There’s a reason for this. Natural light attracts positive energy and can impact wellness. “A lack of light definitely affects energy, so does really bright (blueish) white artificial light. A lack of natural light will create disruption in your sleep schedule and with time it can cause depression as well. And natural light is essential for the proper functioning of our immune systems. So, if we are out of alignment in our physical bodies, that will create an energetic imbalance for us as well,” says Malekpour.
While it’s impossible to increase the amount of natural light in a home, getting rid of heavy opaque curtains in favor of sheer ones and only using blackout shades at night can help balance undesirable lighting situations.
White Sage is a key ingredient for cleaning a home. While burning sage feels like a trend, in her book, Malekpour explains how this beautifully scented herb has grown so popular in recent years. “White Sage is trendy for a reason: it’s powerful and smells divine when burning. It’s native to Southern California, where I grew up. For centuries, this plant ally has been used ceremonially by many Native Tribes in North America to encourage psychic detox, to raise one’s energy level, and for purification on many levels. I use it to cleanse spaces of subtle (and not so subtle) stale energies in preparation for fresh intentions.”
But White Sage isn’t just useful for cleansing spaces, “[It] can also cleanse a person’s aura of stagnant energies in advance of ceremony or spiritual work,” shares the author. “It diminishes any turmoil in your life as you prepare to embark on new ventures with positive vibrations. It is as critical, as ever, to life in right relationship with the Earth, so if you do want to work with White Sage in particular, please be sure to procure from a sustainable source, or choose a similar herb that is local to you.”
First, open the window to let light and air into the space. Then Malekpour suggests opening the sacred space by “calling in your angels, allies, and ancestors of 100 percent light.”
Then use sage or a favorite smoke cleansing herb, and cleanse the inside and outside of the home. “[Go] up to the property line, including drawers, closets, cupboards, everything,” she notes.
Then walk through again with different herbs, a cleansing room spray, and some bells or a wind chime. Once the room is cleansed, the work can begin. “Now you have a blank slate, take some time and set a clear positive intention (such as love, happiness, success, or health) for your new home and call that energy in. Close sacred space thanking the herbs you used and all of the energies that came in for support.”
While crystals are beautiful and often used as decor, they also have a higher purpose. Crystals can attract and balance energy. For example, the author uses selenite wands in almost every room of her home to keep the space pure. “I leave one on my computer, and one on my cell when I’m finished using them for the day so they can clean any stagnant or negative communication. I also keep one on my tarot deck to make sure there’s no energetic cross-contamination between readings.”
Citrine is another crystal that adds energetic value to a home “You will immediately feel the uplifting vibes citrine brings into your home. Not only is it a beautiful stone, but citrine will bring the power of positivity, and a burst of bright energy and warmth into your home.”
Simply cleansing a home a single time isn’t enough. Maintenance is essential. “Being selective of whose energy you let into your space, and being mindful of your own habits. Keep your vibe high by complaining less, refraining from gossip, and keeping an open, grateful heart.”
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