In 2010 I travelled to Laos, Malaysia and Vietnam to learn about a species of tree called Aquilaria. This tree was considered suitable for sustainable forestry plantations in lands had previously been deforested and potentially offered some good investment opportunities. It was during that time that I learnt that from the Aquilaria tree came the incredibly hypnotic oil known as Oud distilled from Agarwood which forms within the core of the tree. The first sniff of pure Oud blew my mind and I could only think that it smelt like raw nature. This was because it was unlike any alcohol based, chemically altered fragrance I had ever smelt before and I needed to get used to it. It started to grow on me quickly. Buddha called it the “Scent of Nirvana.“
I had a tiny dab of it and yet despite showering and washing my hands the scent remained for four days and during that time I became obsessed with it. At night I had incredibly powerful dreams of my life which highlighted hugely significant events that I had forgotten about and within which important messages were held. I also slept deeper than ever before which is probably what enabled the dreams and I always awoke to find the hand where the oil had been dabbed close to my nose. I started to research Oud oil and very soon I was drawn into the amazing history of it going all the way back to the Garden of Eden.
My research led me to find out that Oud has been used in all spiritual traditions to achieve the highest states of consciousness during meditation and prayer as it is believed to raise the spiritual vibration and can be used in transcendental meditation and high magic. It neutralizes negative energy and stabilizes mind and emotions. I began to link this to the deep sleep I had encountered and how I awoken feeling so calm and rested.
With that in mind, I have travelled across Asia looking at different plantations growing Aquilaria trees, tested the many different variations of both Agarwood through incense and Oud through the oil. I have learnt where it grows best, what it needs to grow and how the Agarwood is formed within the tree. Quite simply it is an infection, a fungus form which the core of the tree turns into a dark ,preferably black, resin.Agarwood. Not every tree gets this infection which is why in the wild it is close to extinction as hunters cut down everyone looking for precious resin. The species desperately needed to be grown in sustainable plantations where it could be protected and that is now happening across Asia.
Agarwood and Oud exemplifies the way I want to live my life – as close to nature as possible seeking natural healing, staying away from chemicals, riding myself of negative energy, and ensuring I am calm and focused to achieve the best out of my life. This is why Jinkowood has been formed as a way of sharing this amazing product with like-minded people who want to live a conscientious way of life.