Aromas, Prayer, Meditation and Gratitude
Posted on November 14, 2009 0
Aromas, Prayer, Meditation and Gratitude
Contributed by Candace Newman
Throughout the history of spiritual practice, fragrance is repeatedly associated with the Divine. Aromas are an invisible expression of love and spirit. Aroma, prayer, and meditation are all cross-cultural and languages of no words...and move us to a place of stillness and solitude. It is no wonder we find them together since the beginning of time. As we all yearn to commune with God and place ourselves in the presence of the Divine, combining our concentration with a sense of wonderment can be greatly assisted by fragrance and aroma. We strive to transcend our worldly concerns, be still, and find the Holy Joy of the innocent. It is by grace that we are given these momentary releases from restlessness and the mundane.
Since flowers are among the elements of enlightenment, it only makes sense that they are here to guide us into what Eckhart Tolle calls "our own inner flowering". He goes on to say that aroma taps into an inner opening that connects to the realm of spirit. In my own work, I am always in awe of how genuine aromas seem to open the heart and call in the spirit...and settle us reverently with our soul. There is a sense that the soul recognizes all soulful elements. Our hearts know the pure aromas of the flowers and plants of nature, and it feels like home.
In times of prayer and meditation, we look to shift our emotional state, and move to a spiritual place of quiet. Historically, aromas have been used in religious and spiritual practices to induce and enhance this desired contemplative and transcendent state of being. My year in Saudi Arabia, with side trips to Cyprus and Thailand, showed me the strong reverence for aromas in their ancient cultures. Frankincense and Myrrh were burned as Holy incense. Jasmine and Rose petals were laced into necklaces. The spirit of joy and the sacredness of these precious gifts from nature permeated your being, as did the aromas. There was an immediate sense of the ancient and the holy.
One time when passing a lady of the market in Thailand our eyes met over a rose. There was an aromatic glance, a recognition, a silent nod. There are certain soulful elements that bring us together in stillness and silence....no matter the age, condition, language or culture.
The transcendent vapors from pure and genuine essential oils perform like an alchemist, shifting us from the ways of the heavy body to the lightness of spirit. Aroma knows no boundaries and goes beyond the veils, blessing us with an aromatic glimpse, and transporting us into the field of our soul. Here we can rest in the presence of God.
It is this joy and gratitude that we all seek in our meditative times. Having precious aromas with us throughout the day can gently remind us of this inner garden. I spent a month above the cloud line in the Andes of Ecuador with an Incan Yachak (translated as "the one who knows") and several of his apprentices. Aromas played an integral part in their prayers and celebrations. They breathed in and honored the aromas of nature, to connect with God. This was done with great joy and a reverent sense of gratitude for Mother Nature.
Being in awe of the mystery is a wonderment that we must hold sacred in our hearts. Einstein stated: "The most beautiful and deepest experience a man can have is the sense of the mysterious. It is the underlying principle of religion as well as of all serious endeavor in art and in science."
Many essential oils and their aromas assist your prayers and meditations to quietly bring you home to your heart with gratitude as this reverent time of year.
Love starts in the Heart...
The Place where God always is...
Patiently waiting for us...
Some Essential Oils that were traditionally used historically for Prayer and Meditation are Frankincense, Myrrh, Sandalwood, Rose, Jasmine and Sage.
Important note: Sandalwood is listed as and endangered species and many of the Frankincense species are listed as threatened on the Cropwatch website's database. To learn more about endangered and threatened species that effect aromatherapy please visit www.cropwatch.org for more information.
Candace Newman, MAT, LMT, The Oil Lady®, has practiced Aromatherapy for 18 years. She is the founder of The Good Medicine Tin®, Oil Lady Aromatherapy®, and the Touch With Oil® Hand Massage. She and her husband, John, own The Good Medicine Tin Company LLC. www.GoodMedicineTin.com 866.304.3451.
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