Category Archives: The Sawman Toolkit

The Shawman Toolkit- Sage

This article is intended for anyone that wants to start incorporating tools for the function of heightening the psychedelic experience. There are many tools by which this can be done, sage being just one of them. Personally, I have been around sage many time throughout most of my life but generally disregard the plant for the same general reason why I disregard sound healing and acupuncture, but as I look for additional tools by which I can heighten the experience of my people my search is becoming broader.

Today we will be talking about sage which is a plant that has been used in medicine since ancient times. Traditionally it has been used to ward off evil spirits, treat snake bites, increase a woman’s fertility and more. It’s a known diuretic and anesthetic, and so is pretty much good for any type of tingle, snag, burp, or bump.

The practice of using sage to clear space of negative energy is called smudging and has been around for thousands of years. When burned sage is believed to be able to clear negative energy as well as provide protection from negative energies to come. Traditionally smudging is done with each of the four elements reenacted through the dish (water), the erb (earth), the burn (fire), and the smoke (air). The idea is that it’s the smoke that gathers negativity as it passes through and over objects. As the smoke is ushered away so is the negativity. The important part of the process is the intent of the person performing the smudging in that one should focus on exactly what one wants to get out of the process.

As I alluded to at the beginning of this essay, there is an element of mysticism that I have always been in opposition to. In reflection upon the ancient tradition I don’t think there is anything to it, meaning; it would not stand the scrutiny of a double blind study on the effectiveness of cleansing properties of sage beyond the power of intent or placebo, but let us not overlook the power of placebo in its cultural influence that is not evenly distributed or random. The ancients were able to tune into something that was later found out to be more than meaningful, useful. Why is it that our culture gatherers beliefs around specific things? Things like archetypal stories or color. Let us be careful to not fall into the same pit as the masses with things like religion, self-help, or vanity in that we seek to not only use the wisdom of the past but to build upon such foundation, shaky though they may be. To transcend the cultural effect attached to something like sage would be something only a Sage could be capable of. For the average human sage, in addition to being an anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and smelling nice, provides a sense of meaning in connection with a old tradition which is not a power that can be gained easily but is such the power of the scientist.


“For there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”