For thousands of years people throughout the ages have used scent as a vehicle to access the spiritual realm. Fragrance and spirituality mingle as one in spiritual traditions around the world. Scent has been said to alert the gods to our presence and act as a sign that the human mind is focused and receptive to spiritual guidance. In many cultures sweet smelling aromas were and still are associated with divinity — with gods, heavens, angels, and saints all being attributed with having a delightful , yet indescribable, smelling fragrance.
Aromatic plants in the form of oils and incense were elements of religious practices in early cultures worldwide. Anointment with fragrant oils was almost a universal practice. Burning incense in rituals provided a connection between the physical and the spiritual. In fact, the word perfume come from the Latin per, meaning “through”, and fume, meaning “smoke”. It was a common belief that contact with the divine could be achieved through the smoke of incense.
Although spiritual practices differ greatly, it’s no coincidence that so many cultures and civilizations throughout history have used aromas as a part of their spiritual practices. Even today the use of aromas in spirituality can be witnessed across the globe.
From a biochemistry point of view, the pursuit of spirituality through aroma makes a great deal of sense (pun intended !). The mechanics of smell are but one short biological step away from consciousness, including higher consciousness. Aroma molecules get as close to the brain as possible without actually being the brain. They stimulate the brain and the olefactory bulbs reach out to meet them. Aroma evokes emotions, as well as memory, and often the two are connected. Emotions run deep, to the very core of our being. But aroma can reach them instantaneously.
Essential oils are extracted from plants in a very concentrated form. They are the life source of the plant. In fact ‘essence” means soul, and many people say that essential oils are the ‘soul’ of the plant. Using essentials oils to access our soul or higher self, has been shown to be a very effective method for changing beliefs, thoughts, and patterns of behavior.
Recent research into plant scents and essential oils in particular, has proven they have powerful effects on human behavior. Scent can trigger the brain to release old beliefs and open the pathways to new learning and understanding. A combination of essential oils, positive thinking, and deliberate application, can clear cell receptor sites, and create synergistic results unique to each person. Emotional healing has been both immediate and long term.