Principally one distinguishes between two means of burning incense:
- Burning incense on glowing charcoal.
- Burning incense on an Incense Mesh Plate.
Charcoal Traditionally, incense has been burned on glowing coal.
For this, one needs a fireproof vessel and perhaps some sand. Nowadays the most common kind of coal are quick lighting charcoal tablets.
They are easy to use, as they ignite themselves once lit .
But we should take care that the coal tablet gets enough air all round.
It is best to stand the round tablet on end, especially, when we are burning on sand, so that it gets enough air for igniting.
As soon as grey parts become visible at the edges, you can tip the coal over again.
Now the joy of burning incense can begin!
At first dose carefully, as resins and herbs can develop good quantities of smoke.
Also, there is the pure Japanese Charcoal. This is pure pressed charcoal without any additives. It is a little harder to get it going at first, but once it glows, it works like the quick lighting charcoal tablets. Burning time for both kinds of charcoal is approximately one hour. A third possibility is the Natural Herbal Charcoal. Here we are dealing with pressed herbs which produce a pleasant smell. This Herbal Coal glows slowly and burns piece by piece the resin lying on it. Those who feel that the effect of the black coal is too intense, can try this Natural Herbal Coal which is much smoother.
It is best to burn this kind of coal on a net vessel, as here it gets more air for glowing than on sand.
Incense Mesh Plates
The other method of burning incense is over a tea-light candle with an Incense Mesh Plate. This method follows aromatherapy.
A very fine strainer is fixed 5 to 10 cm above a tea-light. For this, aroma lamps with a removable bowl can be used. Here you can exchange the bowl with the Incense Mesh Plate. Another option would be to use Incense burner warmers originally manufactured for burning incense on a Mesh Plate.
The herbs or resins are put directly on the Plate. By the rising heat of the candle flame they slowly glow.
Attention: If the net comes too close to the candle, herbs or resins can catch fire.
Please do not leave unattended! You can find Incense Mesh Plates as well as matching Incense burner warmers in our chapter Incense Accessories!