Will a Smudging Ceremony Drive Away Only Negative Spirits, Or Also a Welcome Presence?

Question

I have a question about smudging; I know that it can be used to try and rid a space of unwanted energy/spirits, but do you know if it would affect a spiritual presence that is welcome? A family member of mine passed away in the house that I live in, and sometimes I feel like I’m still able to feel her presence. I want to perform a smudging on my house, but I’m afraid it might clear away her energy. Any thoughts?

—Victoria, USA

Answer

Dear Victoria,

Evil spirits dislike holy objects, pictures, ceremonies, sattwic (pure) energies, and are driven away by them. Good spirits and beings like them and are attracted to them.

I don’t know the exact process of smudging, but the principles must be the same as those in yogic ceremonies. So if you use sacred wood for creating smoke, if its atmosphere is elevated, and if sacred invocations are used, any unwanted negative spirits will go away, while good spirits will remain or will feel attracted.

Yogananda once said during a sacred Kriya Yoga ceremony that “lots of angels have passed through this room today.” But all negative spirits were certainly being pushed away by that elevated ceremony.

There is another point to consider, however, concerning your question. Your family member who has passed away has to leave to the higher worlds. We should never want to keep them bound here by our attachment. What you feel is probably her remaining energy, as a house is filled with the vibration of those living in it. That vibration will not be affected by your smudging ceremony. Should you, however, feel that her soul indeed still lingers here on earth, in your house, it would be not positive at all. In that case it would be best for you to make a ceremony to release her, sending her off to the higher spheres where she belongs right now.

In divine friendship,
Jayadev