In reading a little Osho, I noticed that the one idea he comes back to again and again is that the significance of life, beauty or happiness is that it is significant in itself-it needs no other reason than just that it is! These things just exist for the beauty of existing, just like we do! We are here and that is enough.
“Continue practicing until you see yourself in the cruelest person on Earth, in the child starving, in the political prisoner. Practice until you recognize yourself in everyone in the supermarket, on the street corner, in a concentration camp, on a leaf, in a dewdrop. Meditate until you see yourself in a speck of dust in a distant galaxy. See and listen with the whole of your being.
If you are fully present, the rain of Dharma will water the deepest seeds in your consciousness, and tomorrow, while you are washing the dishes or looking at the blue sky, that seed will spring forth, and love and understanding will appear as a beautiful flower.”
~ Thich Nhat Hanh ~
Statue of Buddha in Earth Touching Mudra at Violet and Company Incense
Frankincense is a wonderful scent to use for meditation. It is calming and helps to focus. Frankincense is also great for studying, writing, creating a calm space and creating a peaceful atmosphere. There are many other uses for Frankincense, but if you are smoke sensitive or just prefer using different methods than incense and pure resins, consider essential oils! We have wonderful oil burners at Violet and Company Incense and you can easily get the benefits of Frankincense using essential oil, a little water and an oil burner. What a great way to enhance your mediation!
When all the noise is silenced,
The meetings adjourned…
The lists laid aside,
And the Wild Iris blooms
In the dark forest…
What still pulls on your soul?” ~Rumi
This time of year brings us to questions like these. Contemplations about life, endings, beginnings and what really matters. Family and being with loved ones is one thing that pulls at the soul…
The days are colder and when we at Violet and Company Incense are together now, we are burning sandalwood incenses. Any sandalwood incense is warm and woody, creating a cozy atmosphere. One of our favorites is Sri Rama Benzoin & Perfumery Works Sandalwood. It is a dry sandalwood that is slightly sweet and very delicious. Violet and Company Incense sells this in lots of 100 sticks (4 packets of 25 sticks each)-$3.00.
to be immersed in a scent world,
is to shift your consciousness
and to awaken to the moment more fully.
~Mandy Aftel, Essence and Alchemy
We just got Mandala Art and Incense’s Tibetan Rose (Gulab) incense, straight from Nepal. This incense is incredible. It is earthy and subtle with a good infusion of rose. There is a muskiness about it that offsets the sweetness of the rose, creating a subtle balance. The incense comes in a paper tube, with 30 sticks of incense inside. It also contains a burner. Each stick burns for approximately 60 minutes.
Be careful with this incense, it is delicate. It is stickless, so the upside is that if it does break, you can just burn it in smaller chunks and none is wasted.
The incense does come with a burner, but our favorite way to burn it is in a bowl full of small rocks. We put the incense in between the rocks to hold it up. Some people use small bowls full of rice or sand to hold up their incense and burn multiple sticks at a time.
According to the manufacturer, Rose is a symbol of love and purity and Buddhists use it as an aid to meditation and prayer. In aromatherapy, it is used to sooth emotions such as sadness and resentment.
“Have you ever heard the wonderful silence just before the dawn? Or the quiet and calm just as a storm ends? Or perhaps you know the silence when you haven’t the answer to a question you’ve been asked, or the hush of a country road at night, or the expectant pause of a room full of people when someone is just about to speak, or, most beautiful of all, the moment after the door closes and you’re alone in the whole house? Each one is different, you know, and all very beautiful if you listen carefully.”
― Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth
Without rests, music would not be music, it would just be a continual stream of noise. Without quiet time, we would not be able to regroup and relax. Silence is a very important and sometimes lacking thing in our lives.
I recently had to visit San Francisco, and was overwhelmed by the noise, activity and busyness of the city. Everywhere I went there was a car running, a person talking, a bus stopping with a loud hiss of hydraulic brakes. At night, the BART blew its whistle every 15 minutes until midnight, when either it stopped or I fell asleep. When I got back to my home in a small town, I was thankful to sit down on my back porch and hear absolutely nothing but the beating of my heart and the soft padding of my cats paws as she walked across the deck. If you live in a city like San Francisco, there is always some sort of noise that breaks through and disturbs quiet moments. If you live with others there may always be someone asking a question or talking to you about something. No matter what your situation today, there is almost always something or someone who fills the quiet time with noise.
Sometimes we don’t realize how inundated we are by sound. It is nice, once in awhile, to just go into a quiet place where you can be alone, and sit. Think whatever thoughts there are to be thought, listen to your own breathing and the comforting beat of your heart. It is nice to burn a nice, subtle incense during these times. I prefer VIVA Mainichi-Koh by Nippon Kodo. Koh means Sandalwood and Mainichi means “everyday”. This is just a subtle, everyday scent that inspires relaxation and joy and is perfect for enjoying quiet times.
What Herbal Incense is
photo courtesy of Rob Ostermaier/Daily Press in the Washington Post
Herbal incense, Spice, Herbal smoke-it all adds up to designer drugs sprayed on herbs that people inhale in order to alter consciousness. It has been linked to deaths, seizures, hallucinations, vomiting, anxiety and accelerated heart rate. It is the second most used illicit substance among high school seniors.
What Herbal Incense is not
Herbal incense is not sold by Violet and Company. In my opinion, herbal incense should not even be called incense because it is not.
Incense is a sacred substance among many of the worlds religions including Hinduism, Neo-Paganism and Buddhism. True incense has been used, prepared and traded for hundreds of years. True incense is used by the intelligent, courageous and spiritual to forge ahead on roads less travelled by most. Herbal incense is a cheap substitute used by those without knowledge in their innocent attempt to learn what meditation, reading, study and observation would teach.
We at Violet and Company urge anyone thinking about using Herbal incense, thinking it is a “natural substance” and thus is OK, to think deep and long about this. Putting chemical substances of unknown origin into the body may be seriously polluting your vehicle and your consciousness. Herbal incense has been linked to the deaths of young people and has caused seizures and other serious mental health issues. Five minutes of altered consciousness is not worth death or permanent damage to the mind.
Every individual and every being on this earth is unique and important. The things that each of us have to offer to this world are unique to ourselves and can’t be provided or offered by anyone else. We are all essential. It is important to keep the body healthy and the mind clear so that we can each fulfill our unique destiny, whatever that may be.
A good place to start in the pursuit of the exploration of your unique gifts is an online magazine such as Tathaastu magazine, which is a Sanskrit benediction for “it shall be so” or “so be it”. Tathaastu is an affirmation as well as an expression of a desire. Tathaastu magazine explores and introduces the ideas of health, wellness and the exploration of true and deep relationships. It addresses the teaching of how to tap into your own personal power-these are all things that lead to peace, joy, happiness, prosperity, feeling confident and relaxed. Basically all of the things that those who use Herbal Incense seek to find, but do not know how to get.
Coffey, Lissa. www.whatsyourdosha.com Dosha Newsletter, 01/03/12.
Tathaastu Online Magazine. http://www.tathaastumag.com/index.php