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Incense Around the World

Our products are inspired by traditions and cultures throughout the world:


Smudging is the burning of certain herbs to create a cleansing smoke bath, which is used to purify people, ceremonial and ritual space, and ceremonial tools and objects. There are different ceremonies and rituals that can be done. The burning of herbs or incense is a practice held sacred by many indigenous cultures. It is a ritual for cleansing, purifying and protecting the physical and spiritual bodies.

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Incense in China is traditionally used in a wide range of Chinese cultural activities including religious ceremonies, ancestor veneration, traditional medicine, and in daily life. The Chinese developed a sophisticated art form with incense burning like with tea and calligraphy called xiangdao (香道). It involves various paraphernalia and utensils in various ceramic containers utilised to burn incense. Examples include tongs, spatulas, special moulds to create ideograms with incense powder, etc. all placed on a special small table. It is most often used as an enhancement to a personal space to accompany other arts such as tea drinking and guqin playing.

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The burning of incense in Japan began during the 6th century (the Asuka period) with the introduction of Buddhism, which uses incense during rituals and ceremonies. Agarwood was imported into Japan from China via Korea. From that point on, incense would become an important facet of Japanese culture. Incense is used for a variety of purposes, including Buddhist ceremonies, spirituality and meditation. Kōdō (香道 (Way of Incense)) is the Japanese art of appreciating incense, similar to the tea ceremony, in which participants follow established practises involving the preparation and enjoyment of incense. Though it is counted as one of the three classical arts of refinement, it is relatively unknown amongst modern Japanese people.[citation needed] Kōdō includes all aspects of the incense process – from the tools (kōdōgu (香道具)), which, much like tools of the tea ceremony, are valued as high art, to activities such the incense-comparing games kumikō and genjikō.

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India is the world's main incense producing country. incense remains an important part of the daily puja ritual, which is a religious offering performed by all Hindus to their deities, especially during the beginning of a new venture, or to commemorate some special occasion. The aspect of the ritual known as dhupa involves the offering of incense before the picture of a deity, as a token of respect. A sādhu will regularly burn incense in this fashion, as a gesture to Agni, the God of Fire. For the sadhu, the world is alive with unseen forces that must be continually propitiated with offerings and cleansing rituals. Their sacred fireplaces, known as dhuni, perform the same function as incense, on a larger scale, which is to transform matter into aether. Burning incense is thus a reminder, of the sacred power of fire to transform, and the ultimate journey of all physical matter towards spirit.

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 Middle East

In most Arab countries, incense is burned in the form of scented chips or blocks called bakhoor (Arabic: بخور‎ [baˈxuːɾ]. Incense is used on special occasions like weddings or on Fridays or generally to perfume the house. The bakhoor is usually burned in a mabkhara, a traditional incense burner (censer) similar to the Somali Dabqaad. It is customary in many Arab countries to pass bakhoor among the guests in the majlis ('congregation'). This is done as a gesture of hospitality.

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