Looking at that list, it’s easy to assume we’re reciting the numerous beneficial properties of palo santo wood. While you’re not wrong, each of those adjectives also describes yoga, something we consider the “wood of the saints” spiritual twin.
From its mystic beginnings in northern India five millennia ago to today’s modern studios, yoga has always been a deeply personal practice. Some use it to hone their bodies, improving their strength and flexibility. Some use it to relieve tension and stress. And for some, it’s a way to connect with themselves and the world around them on a higher level.
Regardless of why people choose to practice, it’s hard to deny that the mental, physical, and spiritual benefits of yoga seem to be immeasurable. Not surprisingly, this is a trait it shares with palo santo. They’re both mood boosters. They both have cleansing properties. They both simultaneously ground and uplift you. So naturally, it makes sense to combine yoga and palo santo wood into one purifying, inspiring practice.
As an Incense
One of the preferred palo santo uses is in smudging or burning rituals. The delicate, sweet smelling smoke evokes hints of mint, citrus, and light pine. To enjoy its energizing effects during yoga, we recommend lighting a piece of palo santo wood before you begin and allowing the smoke to gently fill the room. Follow your intuition; once you feel you have enough, extinguish the flame and begin your routine. Burning palo santo wood beforehand will heighten the meditational benefits of your asanas.
As an Essential Oil
If you don’t want to smudge but still wish to experience the benefits of practicing yoga with the holy wood, try using palo santo essential oil. A few drops in a diffuser is all it takes to fill the room with its uplifting aroma. Another method is to dab a little oil on your temples, the nape of your neck, and your heart. This can help ward off negative emotions and allow you to focus clearly on your routine. And if you’re sore from some particularly enthusiastic poses, try massaging your muscles with diluted palo santo oil for an exquisite treat after yoga.
As a Post-Yoga Tea
Finally, you could reward your yoga efforts with a steaming cup of palo santo tea. Our favourite recipe calls for a few small slivers of wood steeped in hot water with a little bit of honey, stevia, or any other sweetener added. Historically, the tea has been a source of traditional medicine in South America and is well known for its ability to reinvigorate your mood, creativity, and immune system. Run a hot bath, pour yourself a cup of palo santo tea, grab a book, and bask in the post-yoga glow.
Though they originated on opposite sides of the world, yoga and palo santo wood complement each other on the path to inner peace and wellness. To achieve a deeper connection during your asanas, try incorporating palo santo oil and wood into your yoga practice.
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