Most religions in the world use incense in one form or the other -- sometimes to mark a special occasion or for daily prayers. The reason for burning incense sticks is symbolic. It is believed that the beautiful smoke and fragrance, which is slowly released on burning of incense sticks or incense cones, rises high up in the air, goes beyond our world, straight towards the kingdom of gods.
An incense stick contains aromatic herbs and various plant substances. On burning this incense stick, the subtle aroma which is released, enchants the sense of smell, creates a pleasant atmosphere, enhances our mood and brings about balance and harmony. An incense stick is therefore the most basic product of Aromatherapy.
How incense sticks are made:
The preparation of traditional incense is very simple: the base is a carefully measured mixture of powder extracted from the bark of tropical plants, of diverse wood, sandal (from which the most part of the oil is extracted), and ground vegetable coal. Some of these raw materials are used for their adhesive and combustion properties and others for their aromatic and combustion action. The base is then mixed with water to form a paste, which is rolled onto bamboo stick, then dried and submersed in a compound of aromatic oils.