Four Days of Meditating on Smells

Sniff Test — scents — time machines travelling along memory; they rapidly situate you in a place; it’s about proximity

Day one — woodsmoke

Did you ever notice that in times of stress your sense of small [sic] grows more acute? There are reasons for this. There is nothng like scent to bring you to focus on the here and now. It also has few rivals in provoking memory. And memory is the basis of accessing stories to help you cope with the present.

Day two — stock pot

Smell what goes in. Smell what comes out.

Day three — diapers

Sh*t happens but don’t forget the smell of a clean diaper and the accompanying talcum powder.

Day four — transference

Dwell on the ever reoccurring scents captured in the palm of one’s hand… Tobacco grasped and released — afterwords smell the cupped palm but don’t touch your nose… likewise when you wash you hands devote a few seconds to smelling the lather before rinsing …

Further Reading

Howes, David. The Varieties of Sensory Experience: A Sourcebook in the Anthropology of the Senses (Anthropological Horizons, Vol. 1). (University of Toronto Press, 1991).

And so for day 2747

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2 Responses to Four Days of Meditating on Smells

  1. Learnt today about “smokeless smudge” — i.e. crush of bit of sage or other medicine in your palm and sniff. Be bold and smear over face.

    Smell is indeed a two-way signal for stress.

    Scents alert us. Scents soothe us.

  2. I learnt how to truly smell by observing a cat catnip snack.

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