The start of a new year is a good time to clear the accumulated energy from the past year. I don't know about you, but this past year left me with a significant amount of old energy that needed to be cleaned away. Having spent a good part of the last ten days clearing my energy I now feel like I can start the new year feeling clean.
Energetic cleansing is a good practice any time you feel a little out of balance, and not something to do just once a year. We accumulate a lot of energy as we go through each day and not all of it is positive. Energy from our own thoughts, the events that we pass through, and from the people that surround us all affect our energetic state. Several different techniques have developed for energetic cleansing. A few of my favorite include scanning, dusting with hands or feathers, breaking and reforming energy patterns using sound (drums or rattles), purification, and energy absorption. Let's take a quick look at them.
Scanning is a good practice to engage in every evening before bed. Lie comfortably on your back, touch the tip of your tongue to the front of the roof of your mouth (1) behind your front teeth. Inhale deeply, filling your body with the breath, and then slowly exhale. Scan your body for areas of tension and then release the tension in those areas. Continue to inhale, filling your body with fresh energy and visualize white or golden light filling the tense areas of the body. When you exhale release any heavy energy and the tension and stress that accompanies it. Repeat this a couple of times and then, check-in with the body.
You can use your hands or feathers to dust negative or stagnant energy away from your body. Begin by shaking your your hands and then blow into them. Visualize or feel that your are filling your hands with white or golden light. Once this is done, start at the top of the head in a brushing like motion, cleaning the head, shoulders, each arm and hand, the torso front and back, legs and feet. Make sure to shake the hands to release any energy gathered when finished. Always start at the center your body (head, torso, etc.) and dust away from your torso and towards your extremities and then beyond your body.
This can also be done with a partner. Take turns dusting negative and stagnant energy away from each other. Whether you or doing this alone or with a partner always end by shaking any residual energy off your hands and away from your body.
Breaking and Reformatting Energy Patterns
Sound is a wonderful way to change energetic vibrations. You can shake a rattle around your body, much as you would do with dusting. The sound of the rattle breaks up the energetic patterns around your body and then, once the sound stops, new energy patterns that are more attune to your energy level form. It is a little harder to drum around your own body but again, if you are working with a partner, you can drum around each other, starting at the head and working down to the feet.
Chanting, singing, or playing instrumental music are other approaches to breaking up and reformatting energy. I keep a small Tibetan bowl in my office and strike it first thing in the morning when I enter my office and usually after every interaction with colleagues or students just to make sure that no negative energy settles in my office during the day.
The most frequently used tools for purification are water and smoke. Like many people I start my day with a shower. Although I like hot showers, especially in the winter, I end my showers looking up with by back to the shower head and I let cool water run down my body and carry any residual negative energy down the drain. This feels much like standing under a refreshing waterfall, which I visualize while in the shower. Falling water increases the negative ions in the space and that has both a purifying and energizing effect on the body.
Using sacred smoke to purify energy fields is another common approach. Many people burn the herb sage and pass the smoke of the smoldering sage around their energy field to purify it. Having been trained in the Andes I prefer to burn Palo Santo and let the sweet smoke of a smoldering stick waft around me (2).
Both crystals and eggs, yes common chicken eggs, are used as "sponges" to absorb negative energy. Select the "sponge" that you are going to use to absorb negative energy and then slowly pass it over your body. Again, if you wish you can do this with a partner, passing the "sponge" over each others' body. I prefer Black Tourmaline if I am going to use a crystal and have found that it is a very effective energy "sponge" for soaking up negative energy. Once you have used a crystal as a sponge it must be cleansed. Some people place the crystal in sunlight to cleanse and recharge it, others run cold, fresh water over the crystal, and some place the crystal in a bed of sea salt.
In the Andean regions a fresh chicken egg is used as a "sponge". The egg is passed over and around the body, brushing against the skin. This is called "pasando el huevo". An appropriate prayer is often said by the person passing the egg. The most common prayer that I have heard in Peru and Bolivia is "That the bad leave and the good enter." The egg is never, never, consumed after "passing" it. Rather it is broken open and is examined for dark or black splotches, indications of the absorption of negative energy, and then discarded.
I suggest that you pick the method that most resonates with you, give it a try for a while, note its affect and if you are pleased then continue to use it. You can move from one technique to another and eventually experience all of them. The key is to stay grounded and to keep you energetic field well organized and free of negative energy.
Peace my friends,
(1) In Traditional Chinese Medicine practices like QiGong we focus a lot of attention of the major energy meridians in the body. The main meridian starts at the tip of the tongue and travels down the front of the body, up around the back near the spine, up the back of the head, to the crown of the head and then down to the front of the roof of the mouth. By placing the tip of your tongue to the front of the roof of the mouth you complete the circuit.
(2) A number of sellers on Etsy sell palo santo and it appears that it is even available on Amazon.
I'm Dr. Dave, an eclectic shaman. I lived and worked in Bolivia and Peru for over six years, where I and was trained by Andean Shamans, and today practice eclectic shamanism.