Sage, particularly the White Sage bundles often sold by other crystal and holistic shops, is an unethical and culturally appropriated item.
For centuries, Indigenous tribes have burned white sage in spiritual ceremonies to cleanse, purify and pray, but due to new wellness trends and lack of transparency by businesses, this is now an endangered plant species.
The supply chain for Sage is completely unregulated, leading to mass over harvesting and reductions of growth in the wild. This makes it incredibly hard, if not impossible, for Native users to harvest and use a plant they consider sacred.
People are very often unaware that such a practice is endangering the plant species and hurting Indigenous communities, which is why we wanted to share more. Many Native users believe that white sage shouldn’t be sold at all, stating that it is something that should be given to you.
At Acantha Crystals we pride ourselves in being ethical and environmentally friendly, which means that we will proudly never sell white sage.
As an alternative to Sage, to smoke cleanse our crystals, selves and our space, we instead use ethically sourced Palo Santo wood.
Not all sources of this sacred wood are the same, and can in themselves be unethical if not harvested in the correct way.
Only mature plants, around 50–70 years of age, develop the “heart”—a dense, deeply resined core—necessary for distillation into an essential oil. And palo santo trees produce the finest oils when they die naturally and sit on the forest floor for several years.
For the wood to be ethically sourced, the wood must sit on the floor for between 4 and 10 years, rather than be cruelly cut down. According to shamanic practice, the tree's spirit transforms once it dies, and its spiritual properties are released after a long time of being dead.
It is also important that the wood be harvested by local people appreciative of its heritage and sacredness.
At Acantha Crystals we buy small amounts directly from the Mexican people who live beside the sacred trees.
When burning Palo Santo, I urge you to do so with cultural appreciation at heart, and only when necessary.
Or use alternatives such as selenite for energy cleansing, incense, or home grown herbs.
Feel free to ask any questions and I will try to answer them, otherwise do please research this topic to enhance your spiritual knowledge and practice.