Anyone tuned into the culture of incense, traditionally used as a devotional adjunct to worship, knows its good for the soul. However now science is catching up with historic wisdom and showing that incense can be good for our brain. A world staff of scientists, together with researchers from Johns Hopkins University and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, suggest burning frankincense (resin from the Boswellia plant) can activate poorly understood ion channels in the brain to alleviate anxiety or depression.
Incense is more than just a trinket from the health food store. From Native American pipe ceremonies to incense-infused Hindu pujas, prayers ride the wings of smoke to the ears of God—think of it as a way to text the divine. Listed below are 4 of our favorite boons that incense bestows:
Ritual implies generosity—providing a stick of incense indicates at least some surrender, some belief in an influence better than your own. The act of providing itself, completed without expectation of something in return to your gesture, plants the seeds of generosity.
Incense, with its seductive, earthy fragrance, helps cultivate appreciation. Incense can open the doorway to giving and receiving with gratitude. Traditionally, it’s believed that smoke purifies mind and body to obtain from Spirit. Breathe within the fragrant smoke and allow yourself to fully obtain the day’s bounty. Then, send the smoke upward providing a prayer to the all the unseen forces that maintain your life.
Lighting incense joins the above with the below, heaven with earth. Smoke moves up and out, taking a smidgen of our souls with it. It connects you with the weather of air, fire, and ether, reigniting your relationship to the world.
As science is lastly cottoning on to, incense can actually help with depression. The cutting edge research on how incensole acetate, purified from frankincense, works on particular targets within the brain demonstrates the way the nervous system responds to sure smells. The aforementioned examine additionally provides a biological rationalization for millennia-old spiritual practices which have persevered throughout time, distance, tradition, language, and religion. Seems to be true—burning incense really does make you feel warm and tingly all over.
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