The Meaning of Palo Santo

The meaning of Palo Santo in Spanish is ‘Holy Wood.

True to its name, this sacred tree from the west coast of Ecuador is often used in religious and healing ceremonies. It is ideal for the creation of sacred space.

As the summer solstice recently passed, many traditions throughout the world celebrate holy days. What better time to explore the reasons behind why Palo Santo is considered holy?

Ways of Knowing Palo Santo

Before scientists studied Palo Santo, the local people of the region acquired their own knowledge of this beneficial tree. They did so through generations of close interaction.

Science has a tendency to break things apart.

In the scientific way of thinking, Palo Santo gains its delightful properties from terpenes such as limonene.

Limone has proven effects on our minds and bodies. It elevates mood, induces calm, and reduces inflammation.

But to the people of the source region, Palo Santo’s benefits have always been more physical and intuitive. They learned of Palo Santo through daily experience.

The Senses Hint at Deeper Meanings

When locals burned Palo Santo, they noticed the smoke drove away mosquitos. They also noticed it helped combat mold and stagnation.

Palo Santo smoke freshened living spaces and cleared negative energies. It created a feeling of transcendental calm.

When it came time to make space for the divine, Palo Santo found its way into ritual.

Where Do Good Things Come From?

In Spanish, the word “santo” means holy. But this word also hints at something more profound, lost in translation. The closest we can get to it in English is “divine gift.”

When locals refer to a plant as “santo,” they are saying it is a gift from divine source. A holy plant has to humanity to help us on our journey.

Our Intentions

At Sacred Wood Essence, Palo Santo is our gift to you and the world. We hope it brings peace and harmony to your life.

We never lose sight of the fact that Palo Santo is a gift from somewhere greater. Whatever we choose to name that sacred fountain, we hold the true meaning of Palo Santo in our hearts.

As we burn smudge sticks or spray Palo Santo essence, we pause to reflect on this gift. Moving forward in gratitude and wholeness, we remember and honor the source.

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