Frankincense is well-known in many spiritual communities as a familiar and grounding aroma.
Useful for visualizing, improving one’s spiritual connection, and centering, it has comforting properties that help focus the mind and overcome stress and despair. At one time, frankincense was valued as highly as gold. It was held in this high regard for thousands of years. Frankincense not only had many healing properties, but was also burned to rid the sick of evil spirits, and to purify body and soul. Because of its ability to slow down and deepen the breath, frankincense helps to keep prayer and meditation focused. Frankincense is considered the holy anointing oil in the Middle East, where it has been used in religious ceremonies for thousands of years. More recently, it has been used in European and American hospitals and is the subject of substantial research. Frankincense is also a valuable ingredient in skin care products for aging and dry skin. The ancient Egyptians used it in rejuvenation face masks.
Frankincense (Boswellia carteri) essential oil has a sweet, warm, balsamic aroma that is stimulating and elevating to the mind. In aromatherapy, inhaling the aroma of frankincense essential oil (or absorbing frankincense essential oil through the skin) is thought to transmit messages to a brain region involved in controlling emotions. Known as the limbic system, this brain region also influences the nervous system. Aromatherapy proponents suggest that essential oils may affect a number of biological factors, including heart rate, stress levels, blood pressure, breathing, and immune function.
- Inhale frankincense essential oil after lunch to spiritually refocus.
- Rub frankincense essential oil on the bottom of your feet to help alleviate nervous energy.
- Put a drop of frankincense essential oil on an insect bite to help reduce swelling and speed healing.
- Apply 1-2 drops of frankincense essential oil on temples and/or back of neck to help improve concentration.
Therapeutic grade frankincense can be ingested, diffused, inhaled and used topically. Dilution is recommended and of course, take precautions if you are pregnant and remember to seek medical advice for use beyond what is typically recommended by the essential oils company, particularly for use with children.
Where can you purchase quality essential oils?
This article first appeared in the Jersey Shore May issue of Natural Awakenings