Ancient Wisdom and Modern Science

Maria Low
Mar – Apr 2024 • Vol 4, No 9

Several varieties of frankincense have been known for their mystical and healing qualities for over 5,000 years. These amazing trees grow in the most difficult conditions—relentless wind, scorching heat, and lack of moisture. They are often seen growing by themselves in the desert. The harsh growing conditions of this haggard tree may hold the secrets of its powerful offerings in precious resin.

Finding Medicinal Frankincense
There are approximately 200 species of frankincense. Each possesses distinct chemical constituents. Gary Young, founder of Young Living Essential Oils, made over eighteen trips to Arabia and Somalia to study frankincense and myrrh. Through scientific testing, he discovered that the rare Sacra Frankincense and the Boswellia Carterii species had the strongest medicinal properties. As a result, Gary distilled these two species at the Young Living distillers in the Middle Eastern country of Oman.

Creating Frankincense Essential Oil
Harvesting frankincense resin is a laborious process. First, the bark is cut just enough to allow drops of liquid resin to exude. The resin sits on the bark from two to four weeks. This process is repeated about four times. Finally, the small clump of resin is cut off, and chips of this resin are

distilled in a stainless-steel vat at specific temperatures. The result is the most sought-after aromatic in existence.

Fascinating History of Frankincense
The famous Frankincense Trail went from Jerusalem to the Far East. People traveled in camel caravans, sometimes up to 5,000 people traveling together. This afforded them protection against thieves. Along the trail was an area once called the Hidden City, now known as Petra. The area is one of the wonders of the world. Due to an earthquake, this mountainous area broke apart.

The Sandstone City
The result of this break-up was a passageway to an area where the mountain was made of sandstone and subsequently, buildings were carved into the sandstone. The guards in the city would see caravans coming and would invite them in for rest and trade. They charged a toll for passage, as well as a fee for the storage of essential oils, spices, gold, cloth, and other commodities. Petra became known as a flourishing outpost for trade, including frankincense.

Frankincense and Ancient Royalty
In bygone days, essential oils were used by pharaohs and kings alike. Resin from the frankincense tree was also used as a smudge to discourage insects, and for purification of a room or building. The Queen of Sheba brought essential oils to King Solomon. Furthermore, he received species of plants from the Queen and grew his own aromatic plants. Another famous figure, Cleopatra, was very involved with essential oils as part of her lifestyle. In fact, she managed farms where she distilled and sold essential oils.

Why Use Frankincense?
The science behind frankincense oil is now becoming more available. Today, frankincense essential oil is showing up in cosmetics and supplements. Reasons to use frankincense include:

  • To fight against unfriendly microbes
  • To balance bodily functions
  • As an antioxidant to purify your system
  • As a reliever of emotional “baggage”
  • To uplift your spiritual awareness

The Frequency of Frankincense
All essential oils have a frequency that can be scientifically measured. Each species of plant has its own pitch or harmonic overtones. Frankincense has one of the higher oil frequencies and this is one of the reasons why it is used for anointing and for emotional support. The Greek word for anointing meant to “cover.” In some cases, the word could be used to mean “pour over the head.” Frankincense oil was also used as a r