Incense burning has taken place in India for thousands of years so let’s make scents of its story…
Used for both its sweet aroma and as a medicinal tool, Hinduism brought this incens'ation into its religious practices.
Eventually it spread to Buddhism and soon countries throughout Asia were running on these perfumes.
Hindu monks, and later Buddhist monks, were the first producers of incense. To begin, large pieces of bamboo are cut into sticks. A powdered adhesive made from the bark of a tree is mixed with charcoal dust and applied to the bamboo stick. It’s then left to dry for several days and finally dipped into the scented essential oil.
Bapi, from West Bengal, is now a part of this incense making community.
She purchases bamboo in bulk and cuts it into sticks to then sell at the market for others to turn into incense. She is looking for a microloan to help purchase bamboo at a wholesale price…and that’s where we come in to fulfill this burning desire!
Traveler Stephany brought back fabric from a recent trip aroma’ing around India. She is turning it into a line of totes to support Bapi and other small business owners all over this incens'ational country…
Here’s to life’s sweet incens’ations and to feeling good—because after all, it's Friday!
-Jack & Alley, Co-Founders
PS. Plus a few more fabric finds from travelers blazing their own trails...
Photos: Hindu temple of Pura Pasar Agung, Indonesia by traveler Jack; Buddhist temple of Schwedagon Pagoda, Myanmar by traveler Aaron; Microloan recipient Bapi by Kiva.org.
Traveler Patricia recently visited Tanzania as part of a service project.
She volunteers for the Kisangaji Project, a non-profit that focuses on helping meet the needs of the school and local infrastructure in the village of Kisangaji in Tanzania.