Spring,fragrance and new intentions

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Spring
Spring has sprung and nature is treating us to beautiful vivid colours and fragrances, which we have all longed to see and smell after  Winter. Spring demonstrates a freshness which no other time of the year offers ,the frost now begins to leave the earth and the sun gets higher which encourages all the Spring blossoms and bulbs to show its beauty. The balsam scent of the trees is fresh in the air and new sweet grass begins sprout the wonderful essence of blossom is in abundance, clearly to be seen is the remnants of the fallen leaves of the previous season. What better time to plant your positive intentions with both the remnants of the old and new vigor of Spring clearly in sight.
Positive Intent.
There are many ways to make positive intentions, you can make your own dream boards by putting images on a board of what they would like in your future(i.e if you want more money put an image of money on your board or if you would like a new house put an image on your board of where you would like to live). Another way of making positive intention is to imagine what you would like in your future and picture yourself living the experience . I personally like to write a list of aspirations for the year and note down the positive effects these aspirations will have on me and the people around me. Anyway there are many ways to make positive intentions and there is plenty of information on the web on how to do so. When making positive intention it is useful to keep it fun , develop a clear picture of what you want and think what action you can take to make your goals a reality.

Japan incenseIncense
At this time of year I take the time to visualizes what goals I would like to see grow and explore with my imagination what action would help me.
I infuse my goals with fragrance by burning incense as it is a great way of communicating with my unconscious and developing future plans for my memory. Our sense of smell is strongly linked with our memories, so what better ways is there to use our sense of smell to grow new positive intentions for our memories to store. I can also burn the incense every time I want to revisit my goals and give them more detail or help me to stay focused.

My Favorite incense to use is Baieido’s Kokonoe, which is a Japanese incense. Kokone  is inspired by the  Imperial Palace in the Spring time. When burnt it unleashes a bouquet of Spring aromas and reminds me of Cherry blossoms ,daffodils, violets, hyacinths and the sweet-smelling balsam of the trees. In short this incense is Spring in a stick,which is uplifting and energizing .The fragrance has a definite  floral and sweet woody quality to it . What better incense to use to grow and focus on your positive intentions?

http://www.divine-incense.com/kokonoe-incense-medium-box-90-short-sticks/

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The six grades of Jinko (Aloeswood, Agarwood).

The Six grades of Jinko (Aloeswood, Agarwood)

In Japan Aloeswood is the most prized fragrant wood incense of all. The amazing quality of its incense is only just being discovered in the West.

In Japan, valuable kimonos were scented with smoke from burning Aloeswood. This is the traditional wood for the incense ceremony of Kodo, and in Japan it is purchased in six different qualities. The best wood, Kyara, is differentiated by colour and quality.

Aloeswood, along with santal and clove, is sacred to the Buddhist religion. The living and dead tree is attacked by a fungus, and over time, preferably centuries, nature provides an incense material worth more than its weight in gold.

Aloeswood is a psychoactive substance, and is used in oriental medicines for nervous disorders, colic and as a heart tonic.

The six grades of Jinko are as follows:-

Kyara (The Aristocrat)                                                                                     the-lady-maisumi-of-daimonji-ya-md
Connoisseurs regard this as top-grade material. It is divided according to quality, based on colour (green, black, purple and dark brown-grey).

Rakoku (The Samurai)the-actor-band-mitsugor-ii-md

Reminiscent of the warrior, the aroma of Rakoku is considered relatively pungent and bitter. This type originally hailed from Thailand.

Sasora (The Monk)

Of priestly demeanor, the aroma is considered delicate, cool and sour. Sasora may have originated from the western shores of India, around Goa.

 

Sumotara (The Servant disguised as a noble)

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The aroma has the makings of Kyara, but with the lack of subtlety in-depth. It is an impersonator, hence the name. Described as a sour smell, Sumotara has a somewhat distasteful demeanor. Sumotara originally came from the island of Sumatra in the east Indian archipelago.

Manaka (The fickle one of changing moods)

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Delicate and ever-changing, the tastes of sweet, sour bitter, hot and salty are not easily detectable, and if they are it is a fleeting impression. Manaka hailed from the strait of Malacca between Indonesia and Malaya.

 

Manaban ( The coarse peasant)

Sweet. unrefined and coarse, with a grittiness that distinguishes it from high quality material. Manaban came from the Malabar coast of southern India.

 

syukohkoku                 white cloud

 

Namaste

Mike & Nikki

Thank you to The library of Congress for the images

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Eight ways to use incense

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 1.Unwind.

Kick your shoes off , curl up on the sofa and have a mug of tea with some of your favorite incense and have a moment of relaxation to your self .

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  1. Connect with our senses.

 Attune to your incense by not only be aware of the scent but notice what you feel when you sense it. Notice what sensations there are in the body and what thoughts come through in the mind, Try not to label the experience by observing what is happening and not by judging the experience.

  1. To enhance spiritual practice.

Incense has a long tradition with spiritual practices. Whether that be a personal spiritual journey and practice or part of a religious practice and faith, incense has many uses to enhance. For some it is a way of developing greater mindfulness for others it is part of the ritual to their faith, there are so many different ways incense is used. It’s been said by some incense connects the heavens with the earth. Just as the concept of spirituality can be a shared experience it also is personal one, which mirrors the experience of use of incense it can be shared at the same time as being a purely personal one.Candle Flame

 

  1. To cleanse the home.

Feel your home has got a bit stagnant and the energy levels are low? Give your home  a good clean and tidy, making sure you have got rid of things you no longer want or need. Choose a sandalwood, sage or agarwood based incense or one of your favorite incense to bless each room and intend the home be a place health ,harmony, love and balance.  

  1. Welcome guest into your home.

Have fun , choose an incense which you feel matches your guests burn it in the entrance of your home to welcome them in. If like ask them if the incense scent is one they would choose, you may be surprised with the results. 

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  1. To create a mood. 

Whether you want to create a sensual seductive mood or a uplifting and invigorating feel, incense will  help you to influence the mood through the beautiful fragrance it omits. 

 

  1. Heighten and colour awareness.

Just as colour brings vibrancy to the world so does our sense of smell. The more attuned you become to incense you will also become more attuned to the world of scent. The more focus you pay to the incense you burn (as long as it is a good quality incense) the more sensitive it appears your sense of smell becomes. The world becomes a more colourful place when we become attuned to our sense of smell.

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8. Create your own sanctuary.

Make yourself a warm bubble bath, light some candles, treat yourself to your favourite incense and have a beautiful body oil to massage into skin after your bath. Give yourself the pampering you deserve and be transported to your own sanctuary of bliss.

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