Frankincense has long been attributed with spirituality. Like Myrrh, it was a prized possession in the ancient world, rivaling the value of many precious gems and metals.
It's centering aroma slows the nervous system and promotes feelings of calm and introspection. Frankincense enhances immune, respiratory, epidermal, and nervous systems.
It encourages deep, rhythmic breathing and a relaxed state of mind. It's especially useful to the respiratory system during seasonal changes.
It is relaxing, uplifting, calming and mildly antiseptic. It is excellent for tiredness, grumpiness, negative moods, lack of confidence and emotional turmoil, It helps to slow the breathing and has a calming effect.
Helpful during labor
Dispel gloomy thoughts
Dissipate obsessive thinking
Dispel nervous tension
Frankincense or olibanum is used in incense as well as in perfumes.
Frankincense is tapped from the very scraggly but hardy Boswellia tree through scraping the bark and allowing the exuded resins to bleed out and harden. These hardened resins are called tears. There are numerous species and varieties of frankincense trees, each producing a slightly different type of resin.
These trees are also considered unusual for their ability to grow in environments so unforgiving that the trees sometimes seem to grow directly out of solid rock. The deep roots prevent the tree from being torn away from the stone during the violent storms that frequent this region; the tears from these hardy survivors are considered superior due to their more fragrant aroma. The aroma from these tears are more valuable for their presumed healing abilities and are also said to have superior qualities for religious ritual.
Tapping is done 2 to 3 times a year with the final taps producing the best tears due to their higher aromatic terpene, sesquiterpene and diterpene content. High quality resin can be visually discerned through its level of opacity. Omani frankincense is said to be the best in the world, although quality resin is also produced in Yemen, and along the north coast of Somalia.
Frankincense comes in many grades, and its quality is based on color, purity, aroma, and age.