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Ancient Goodness of Frankincense (Updated)

This post originally appeared in April 11, 2018 and has been updated with new content.

There is so much to say about this essential oil that it may need to become a mini-series so I can do it all justice!


Of all the essential oils, Frankincense has a very colorful and well recorded history.

It is a very old essential oil believed used in Chinese medicine as early as 500 B.C. but even before that there has been evidence found of its use in Egypt and other ancient lands. It was found in an Egyptian Queen’s temple who is believed to have died around 480 B.C.

Many Christians recognize Frankincense through the Bible story as a valuable gift from the Wise Men to the Baby Jesus. By this time, Frankincense had become well known for many of its healing, religious and beauty uses and was one of the most expensive products known at the time. It was as valuable as gold and myrrh at the time of the baby Jesus’ birth.

Frankincense is mentioned in nearly every ancient religion and known to be used in spiritual practices including those of the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists.

This history of this oil is fascinating and really gives a great understanding for why it was considered so valuable in ancient times.

If you’d like to read more about the history of this oil I recommend: 


Frankincense looks like small amber, yellow or even golden colored stones but is actually the sap derived from Boswellia trees.

These tress are rather unique in that they look like overgrown shrubs in some cases and they thrive in places that not much else seems to grow. Scattered among mountain foothills and grasslands in soil that is a dry arid mix of sand and rock. These places  receive little to no water so any plant that grows in these areas must be strong and heat resilient.


I am fascinated with how someone in ancient times thought to go up to a tree that looks like this, get this sappy goo out and realize they had discovered one of the most valuable elements man has ever found ever.

Were they looking for food or water when they found it? How did they think to try this? What did they first use it for?

Can you imagine the conversation that was going at when this happened? 


Frankincense has many ancient and modern day medicine uses. It continues to be a well used oil in many natural health regimes for managing health and treating illnesses and diseases.

In ancient times this oil helped as an insect repellent, salve for wounds and sores, pain management, digestive aid and for any sickness.  Due to its value it was often used in only the most sparingly ways and sadly limited mostly to those that could afford it.

Today, this oil is used to compliment or treat alone cancer, tumors, skin irritations, astringent and germ protection, scar reduction, congestion relief, warts, Alzheimer’s Disease, dementia, jaundice, fibromyalgia and more!

In addition to its acute medicinal uses, Frankincense is a go-to for behavioral and emotional conditions and needs. It is well known for it’s help in treating anxiety, PTSD, nervousness, abandonment issues, emotional healing therapies, and negativity.

To use Frankincense for emotional support needs, simply place a drop on your finger and rub it under your tongue.

Additionally, this oil can be used in teas and foods to enhance flavor and deliver the benefits internally.

NOTE: I will always advocate talking to your doctor about complimenting any prescribed treatment with alternative and natural solutions, including essential oils. Be forewarned that not all doctors will support this decision but it is your health! Find doctors who are open to the discussion and working with you to find ways, naturally or traditionally, that will help you achieve your health goals and needs.


The ancient religions used frankincense regularly in prayers and spiritual rituals. It was also used in funerals for the royal and rich individuals often as a gift to the gods to allow entry of the person’s soul in the next place. It was also used by Egyptian royalty for the embalming process.

Buddhists believe use of this oil in their ceremonies helps lift the soul and spirit to align with God and open the mind to receive.

Today, many modern day religions continue to incorporate this oil into their rituals. Most notably it is used in prayer