Muscat: Frankincense provides one of the most redolent scents in the history of aromatics.
The life of a Frankincense nugget concludes the stunningly beautiful five part online chapters on Frankincense – which includes The Tree and its Gifts, the Frankincense Trail, the Blessed Dhofar Region, History- and the Burning of Frankincense.
The last chapter explains the ritual uses of Frankincense through the method of burning, and its representations of different
life cycles. Its fresh, fruity, pine-lemon bouquet, with delicately sweet and woody undertones, slows and deepens breathing and has been used since ancient times to awaken higher consciousness, and enhance spirituality, meditation and prayer.
It is burnt daily in Oman to welcome guests, perfume clothing and home spaces, and eliminate cooking smells, among other uses.
In order to burn Frankincense, there are three essentials needed. Frankincense nuggets, natural charcoal (from Sidr or Sumr trees), and an incense burner (censer).
If the intention is to be used in the home, then the incense can be carried around and its smoke is wafted into a person’s beard or over one’s body. After dinner or house functions, incense is burnt as a sign of farewell.
In the morning, it is used regularly in the kitchen and the living room. In the evening, it is used in other areas of the house, such as bedrooms.
It is often used by Omani families to soak their clothing with the smoke, using special a wicker frame called a makhbarah.
For weddings, Frankincense is burnt just before the ceremony. During the birth of a child, incense is burnt throughout labour to protect the mother, and also after safely delivering her baby. Incense is also burnt near the baby’s cradle to honour and protect new life. During and after birth, frankincense was burnt for 40 days to protect mother and child.
In 30 minutes, a nugget is completely burnt, but the smoke lingers. After the smoke disappears, the fruity smell persists in the air. More charcoal and more incense permit the fragrance to linger and grow stronger.
Frankincense first releases oils. After 10 minutes, the tear loses colour and turns black. After 15 minutes, the frankincense nugget is half burned. In 20 minutes, the nugget is almost charred and the smoke is less intense.
It takes half an hour for an incense nugget to burn completely. The smoke will be spread in the room and the fresh and fruity smell will remain. Thereafter, it is preferable to remove the tear and replace it with a new one to extend the effect.
If you missed the first four parts of the Frankincense chapters, the best way to catch up is by going online to http://timesofoman.com/extra/oman_land_of_frankincense/index.html