Author Topic: Incense  (Read 4344 times)

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Offline Quinault

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Incense
« on: December 21, 2007, 03:14:59 PM »
Do the different types of incense have specific meaning? Are there certain days when certain incenses are used?

I can smell at least three distinctly different types of incense. One is sort of "soapy" smelling, one is rich and spicy, and one is a heady permeating incense that is used the majority of the time.

Or is my nose just really strange due to the piece of metal I have in there? ;)
« Last Edit: December 21, 2007, 03:15:25 PM by Quinault »

Offline Entscheidungsproblem

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Re: Incense
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2007, 03:21:53 PM »
I know when my Priest came back from a trip to Mount Athos, he brought back containers of incense, and there were over 20 different ones.  Their meaning and how many there are, I have no idea.
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Offline Athanasios

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Re: Incense
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2007, 03:25:08 PM »
Hello,

The only one I know by name is Frankincense.

Anyone know how incense is made or from what it comes from?
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Offline SakranMM

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Re: Incense
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2007, 03:54:19 PM »
We just use the ones that smell the best.  Yesterday at Liturgy, I put some old incense on the coal after the good stuff had run out, and it gave a horribly bitter smell.  I was talking to my priest afterwards, and he said that a young man told him once that it was to remind us of the "bitter-sweetness" of Christian life.  My priest thought this was nuts; he said that incense is to glorify God, and God is not glorified "by stink."

I think just use the one that smells best; don't stink up the church, it's supposed to be a "sweet-smelling sacrifice."
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Offline JoeS

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Re: Incense
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2007, 03:57:55 PM »
Hello,

The only one I know by name is Frankincense.

Anyone know how incense is made or from what it comes from?

"Damascus Rose" is one of my favorites. Sweet aroma.
« Last Edit: December 21, 2007, 03:58:55 PM by JoeS »

Offline zebu

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Re: Incense
« Reply #5 on: December 21, 2007, 04:08:01 PM »
There are many kinds of incense, and I don't believe there is any significance as to which one the priest uses.  When I've served in the altar, I just put in whatever kind of incense is already open.  A lot of churches will use more expensive types of incense on major feasts.
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Offline RPConover

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Re: Incense
« Reply #6 on: December 21, 2007, 05:44:54 PM »
I usually get my incense from this place, http://www.stzosima.com/ it's some of the nicest I've ever smelled. Especially the egyptian amber and jordanville lilac. Some incense like frankincense any myrrh are just the sap of the plant. They basically just scar the tree/bush and collect the sap later, letting it dry then burning it. Other types are made by grinding frankincense and using that as a base and then adding essential oils and drying it.

I hope it's ok to put that link in there, I'm not advertizing or anything, they just have some really great incense.

Offline wynd

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Re: Incense
« Reply #7 on: December 21, 2007, 09:22:11 PM »
"Damascus Rose" is one of my favorites. Sweet aroma.

The only one whose name I know is "Imperial Lavender." It's good stuff :)

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Re: Incense
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2007, 03:15:20 AM »
I know clergy that will put out the Rose scented incense for a Feast day of Mary.  A nice touch indeed.

Offline Simayan

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Re: Incense
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2007, 09:18:25 PM »
The only one whose name I know is "Imperial Lavender." It's good stuff :)

It certainly sounds Orthodox.  ;D

I'm not sure what type we use, bu i have noticed a distinct difference during Pascha.
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Offline jlerms

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Re: Incense
« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2007, 11:19:47 PM »
I think our Parish uses "cypress" incense...and it is my favorite!

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Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Incense
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2009, 03:00:35 AM »
I have been using one from Holy Transfiguration Monastery called "Gethsemane."  It's grown on me.

Offline HandmaidenofGod

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Re: Incense
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2009, 03:06:30 AM »
We just use the ones that smell the best.  Yesterday at Liturgy, I put some old incense on the coal after the good stuff had run out, and it gave a horribly bitter smell.  I was talking to my priest afterwards, and he said that a young man told him once that it was to remind us of the "bitter-sweetness" of Christian life.  My priest thought this was nuts; he said that incense is to glorify God, and God is not glorified "by stink."

 :laugh:  :laugh:  :laugh:
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Offline mike

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Re: Incense
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2009, 04:00:54 AM »
to SakranMM: put some wax from the candles on the coal instead :P
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Offline FrChris

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Re: Incense
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2009, 10:33:24 AM »
to SakranMM: put some wax from the candles on the coal instead :P

One of my acolytes did exactly that a few weeks ago 'to see what would happen'.

He saw, and after a discussion with his priest, he no longer has any such desire to ever again repeat this action.  :D
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Offline Pravoslavbob

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Re: Incense
« Reply #15 on: January 28, 2009, 10:39:21 AM »
to SakranMM: put some wax from the candles on the coal instead :P

One of my acolytes did exactly that a few weeks ago 'to see what would happen'.

He saw, and after a discussion with his priest, he no longer has any such desire to ever again repeat this action.  :D

LOL!!!   :laugh:
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Offline Andrew21091

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Re: Incense
« Reply #16 on: January 29, 2009, 05:56:51 PM »
At my church, we use a ton of different incense that all comes from Holy Transfiguration. One of the more higher quality we use for major feasts is the Sinai incense which is made with oils imported from North Africa; that is one of my favorites. I recently just bought myself a hand censer for my icon corner and I bought Spruce Island, Bethlehem, and Mt. Athos rose incense and they are very nice.

Offline scamandrius

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Re: Incense
« Reply #17 on: January 29, 2009, 06:49:33 PM »
Frankincense is used mainly during the Nativity Fast and Feast season because of its "historical" connections with the birth of our Lord.  Our priest has tons of Frankincense which he received as gifts from congregants who were traveling over in the Middle East and brought it back for him (He even gave me a bag).  But for the rest of the year, he is pretty particular to Damascene Rose.  I think that the sweetness of the aroma is particularly appropriate during the Paschal Season as that is what we believe Christ's tomb smelled of after it was opened.  Other than that, I have no idea as to the significance of the many "varietals" of incense.
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Re: Incense
« Reply #18 on: January 29, 2009, 06:51:08 PM »
I think it is key to use quality incense.  Holy Cross Skete in West Virginia makes quality incense.  I say quality because inferior incense can and will bother those with asthma.  Frankincense also seems to be good and why?  Because it is just Frankincense.  Recently we got incense in our parish that just seems to disturb people, it's inferior and harsh.  Sure it doesn't cost as much as others but it's worth spending more on quality incense.  A priest I know has asthma and only uses incense from Holy Transfiguration, he says it burns good and doesn't inhibit his breathing.  Recently we got a shipment of Rose and I think Ethiopian Frankincense from Holy Cross Skete, WV.