Making sense out of Frankincense & Myrrh
Making Sense of Frankincense & Myrrh a explanation of the modern uses of ancient resins
by Terra Gypsy
Whether you burn incense or not, you may have heard of frankincense and myrrh. But you may not know all of the uses and history this pair of earthy scents have to offer. In this post we are going to go through history and find the uses Frankincense and Myrrh still have to offer us today.
Frankincense and Myrrh are quite possibly the oldest incense in the world. Both originating from Arabia and Northern Africa, they have been used for their aromas, medicinal and spiritual properties since ancient times. Frankincense and Myrrh are created by drying the sap of trees and shrubs into a resin. These resins have been traded in the Middle East and Arabia for over 5000 years. The most well known mention of them is in the Bible as two of the three gifts from the Magi; these Resins were valued more than the gold they accompanied. They were especially valued for their aromas as a perfume or incense in ancient times. In those days, good hygiene was not nearly as attainable as it is in modern times. People often did not bathe regularly, so they used the smoke to mask body odor as perfume and to scent their homes. I could go on forever on the historical hygiene subject as it has been a recent obsession of mine but I'll spare you the horrors this time in respect to these amazing resins.
- Myrrh from the thorny trees and shrubs of the genus Commiphora, is usually a dark or honey brown color. The scent of Myrrh is warm, earthy and sometimes considered piney.
- Frankincense resin is a tree sap from the genus Boswellia. The resin is cream to gold color and gives off a sweet and citrus like earthy scent.
Today both Frankincense and Myrrh have made a come back into our modern lives. A common use for them is in aromatherapy which is becoming increasingly popular.
- Frankincense is uplifting and meditative
- Myrrh is purifying and grounding
Spiritually while Frankincense and Myrrh have had a long history in Abrahamic religions, they have longer still been used in earlier spiritual practices including purifying the dead in ancient Egypt. Nowadays many metaphysical practices use these in meditation, massage, aromatherapy, spell magick, worship and more. Even the most simplistic form of meditation can benefit from the use of frankincense or myrrh. The scents have a way of filling the nose with pleasure and bringing about a relaxing atmosphere.
The next time you are picking through a selection of (good to high quality) incense. Make sure to test out the Frankincense, Myrrh, and Frankincense and Myrrh combo option.
Another way to enjoy the benefits of these aromas for those who aren't so into burning incense is to use fragrance oils such as our Frankincense and Myrrh Body Oil.
Frankincense and Myrrh Body Oil available at TerraGypsy.com and in store.