Each city around the world has its own personality with pros and cons, but the city that can call itself my favorite is none other than New York City, New York. It’s a place full of opportunity and promises with exciting adventure and always has something to explore, no matter the traveler or native. All of its attributes culminate into a very strong and powerful city, and while evaluating its characteristics, the scent that most represents New York City for me is the frankincense essential oil, because it’s incredibly powerful and offers a lot to those who choose to use it to its full potential.
Deep Histories Behind Frankincense and NYC
You may recognize frankincense from the biblical story where the three wise men brought it for Jesus. With the several different benefits of the frankincense essential oil, such as improving the immune system or relieving stress it makes sense that its recognition comes from bringing it as a gift for baby Jesus. It also goes hand-in-hand with myrrh, another gift in the biblical story and both plants can be made into essential oils.
This history and association with frankincense and the Christmas biblical story is another way I connect it to New York City. Just like how frankincense (and myrrh) have a long history and storied past, so does NYC. Millions of immigrants have moved to America through New York City, particularly between 1880 and 1919, each with a great tale of coming to America. It has also been a popular tourist destination for decades with iconic landmarks, such as the Statue of Liberty. Whenever I smell frankincense, I think of the story behind it and the millions of stories behind those that visit and move to NYC.
Frankincense comes from the sap from the Commiphora and Boswellia trees when their bark is cut. This process reminds me of the city, because others may have their opinions about people from New York City, being brute or rude, it can still bring out the best in those that call it home, even if they’re a little rough around the edges.
Interestingly, frankincense and myrrh can be chewed like chewing gum and are edible, but they are more known for their fragrance. When made into an essential oil, they each put off a very distinct scent. When you burn frankincense, it will give off a citrusy, sweet smell. Much of what you find in the city is also sweet because it is unique and enjoyable. At the same time, however, there are aspects of it that can be somewhat bitter. That is where the myrrh comes in. Unlike frankincense, it puts off a bitter, piny odor. Although these smells may be quite different from each other, they are also unique enough on their own to be beneficial to those who enjoy them.
Trading Stocks, Trading Oils
New York City is the financial center of the world, where Wall Street is, so trading is certainly something that is familiar to those who live there. Frankincense has also been traded for thousands of years, particularly throughout the area of North Africa and in the Middle East. The Phoenicians will also sell the resin to the Egyptians and it was used as a form of money at some times in the past.
One other factor that reminds me of the city is the rejuvenating effect that both frankincense and myrrh have. When you are feeling down, there is nothing quite like visiting NYC and taking advantage of all that it has to offer. The same beneficial effects are available when you use these two essential oils to their full potential, either on their own or together.
Frankincense Can Take You to NYC
Whether it’s the trading, the history, the bittersweetness, or a combination of all three, Frankincense will always remind me of the city that never sleeps and the qualities and benefits that they both share. So next time you need a taste of the powerful New York City but want to avoid the hustle and bustle, try diffusing the strong scent of frankincense essential oil to take you to my favorite city in the world.
We hope you enjoyed this personal account by a fellow essential oil lover, Erica C. Check out more Cityscape stories here!