Updated: Oct 2, 2021
Nothing is more evocative than scent. More than any of our other senses: hearing, touch, and even sight – it is our sense of smell that transports our imaginations and memories to a myriad of points in time and space.
At Maha Musk London it is our sincere belief that this least regarded, but most important of our senses, is the most powerful of all. It connects people not only to each other, but to themselves, to their pasts and to their aspirations.
All it takes is the faintest whiff of herbs and spices, or the rich perfume of a favourite aunt, or the sweet scent of the flowers that bloomed in a beloved grandparent’s garden when we were children. All these scents have the ability to whisk us back to a particular time and place in our lives. The power of fragrance is profound and it is our sincere belief that nothing evokes this spirit more than the fragrance of the Arabic incense known as “Bakhoor”.
Traditionally these fragrant chips of agarwood (known as “oud” once processed) are placed in a burning vessel known as a Mabkhara (bakhoor burner) and gently heated to release their aroma. In many Arabian countries the tradition is to pass the Mabkhara amongst honoured guests as a sign of welcome and hospitality, so that all may fully take in the sensuous aromas.
It is fair to say that the heady fragrance of Arabian Oud Bakhoor permeates throughout the whole of Arabic culture. It is typically burned as an accompaniment to the vibrant celebrations of weddings and other such special occasions, as well as to the most solemn of prayers and meditations. Many Arabian families also use this remarkable, natural scent to bring fragrance into their homes every day.
Cultures throughout Arabia ascribe many properties to Arabian Oud Bakhoor. It is beyond doubt that this exotic fragrance will bring beautiful aromas into your home, but bakhoor will do so much more. It is not merely the tradition of Arabian cultures, but also their experience that bakhoor brings a sense of calm and a feeling of security to the air, creating a feeling of heightened mental clarity. Every breath clears the mind of stress and induces a feeling of relaxed contentment. There is something special about the fragrance of bakhoor, the Arabic incense, that lifts you up with every whiff you take!
Bakhoor, the incense of Arabia, is steeped in the traditions of the Arab World. A traditionalist would insist that the best way to experience the Arabic Incense Bakhoor is to use a traditional mabkhara, or bakhoor burner set, which uses charcoal. This is the method that has been used for generations to entice amazing scents from the aromatic wood, and it is still the most authentic way to truly take in the experience.
If you are minded to explore the exotic aromas of bakhoor in the traditional manner, simply place some of your bakhoor chips onto the plate of your burner and light some charcoal. When the charcoal appears grey and powdery (or is glowing red, if you’re doing this at night), use a pair of tongs and with the utmost care gently place a single coal on to your bakhoor, then add a little more bakhoor on top of the coal. The heat from the coal will release the fragrant oils held within the bakhoor into the atmosphere, filling the air around you with a richly exotic aroma.
The traditional method does take a little bit of work, but it adds a pleasing touch of ritual to the proceedings. When using a substance that is associated with so much culture and tradition it is good to slow down and consider its importance. Some things, perhaps, should not be rushed.
It is a matter of much regret therefore that many, if not most of us live in homes that are not ideally suited to the use of genuine hot coals. This is unfortunate but cannot be helped. Fortunately a more modern approach is available in the form of the electrically heated burner set. These burners use electricity to heat a metal plate, onto which your Arabian Oud Bakhoor can then be placed. The fragrance released as the heat from the plate releases the aromas from the bakhoor is largely the same as the traditional mabkhara, and it is without doubt that this type of burner is a much more practical, if a slightly less romantic option.
Imtiyazali, the founder of Maha Musk, has more than twenty years of experience, passion and expertise dealing in Arabian Oud London. His passion for fragrance has inspired him to spread the magic of Arabian Oud beyond London and into the rest of Britain. This is a passion that cannot and should not be confined. We are proud to say that anyone online can experience the finest quality Arabian Oud, be they in London or anywhere else in the UK.
And so we invite you to explore our wares. From our range of beautiful bakhoor burners, to our different variations of bakhoor and many other fragrances and perfumes that we offer. Scent is our passion and our delight. It reaches beyond that which can be felt, seen or heard. It is something that can bind and unite everyone present in a way that is totally unlike our other senses.
Even if people are in the same room, everyone has their own unique experience. Nobody sees the same thing from the exact same angle. In that same room, nobody is experiencing the same physical sensations of touch. One person may be seated on a padded couch while another leans against a hard wall and another can feel the draft coming through the window which affects nobody else. But let the fragrance of bakhoor, the Arabic incense fill the room and this is a truly shared experience. Let the rich and exotic aromas of Arabian Oud Bakhoor sweeten the air of your home and when, in many years time, your family and friends catch that scent on the air as they pass by, they will smile as their memories take them back to happy times.
This is the power of perfume. This is why it gives us such joy, and why we are so happy to be able to share our passion with you. So try a little of our bakhoor to fragrance your surroundings and bring a touch of Arabian magic into your home!