White Sage, Smudging, and Cultural Appropriation in Spiritual Spaces
Nov 29, 2021
You may have noticed that White Sage has grown increasingly in popularity in recent years, especially with the rise of social media as a space to teach and learn new spiritual practices.
In other spaces, you might see White Sage sold in "Smudge Kits” or labeled as smudging materials. You won’t see that at the Healing Hedge Witch.
Smudging is much more than smoke cleansing, despite how it is often advertised, it is actually an ancient Indigenous practice and ritual with deep cultural significance.
Smudging is also a closed practice, meaning it was created to be performed only by the community who created it.
As a business owned and operated by white people, we do not recommend or condone the practice of smudging by other white or non-Indigenous people. Our herb bundles are for cleansing, not smudging. We know these materials—and the appropriation that comes with them—is a complex problem that requires complex solutions.
We are dedicated to being a part of the solution.
Because of the increasing popularity of White Sage as white people appropriate the ritual of smudging, these materials are becoming over-harvested, and therefore more difficult for Indigenous people to acquire for their practice.
This is why we consciously do not, and will not carry White Sage.
We invite you to read more and research the layered issue of cultural appropriation, specifically from the perspective of Indigenous people.
We recommend this curated list of resources for continued reading.