About BPI

I am an Orthodox Christian who makes and sells traditional Orthodox incense and Byzantine perfumes. I began creating my own blends of scent almost 20 years ago when I was studying herbalism and other forgotten arts.   I was gifted by God to live in Africa, Persia, and other countries, and I learned to study the scents of each land, and bring that to an art form.  Of all the human senses, the sense of smell/scent is the most neglected, the most ridiculed, and yet, it is the most powerful.

Much later, I began studying the scents and secrets of the Byzantine world. What began as an artistic inquiry, became a journey that was led by God. I had been looking for incense and perfume formulas. What God gave me, was something much deeper, much more powerful, and much more important.

Today, I live in the mountains of the Sierra Nevada and I make traditional Byzantine perfumes, Arabian perfumes, and also Orthodox incense, including true desert-style bahkhoors, and north African style resin incenses. My work is entirely by hand, no machinery, not even any electricity (it’s not needed anyway unless you are making “junk incense”.)

The work is hard, physically demanding, and it requires a working familiarity with chemistry. If I were to say “any monkey can do it”, I might be partly right. But a monkey cannot assess the condition of its soul, or the human prayerful need for God. As I work with my hands, I attempt in my own feeble, monkey-like way, to practice the Prayer of the Heart.

I live with my daughter,  and two cats, and manage apartment complexes for a living.  My labors for perfume and incense, are truly labors of love and I do not make much profit from it.  It is primarily, a way to talk to people about spirituality, and the love of God.

It is this work, that is more demanding than anything else I do as an incense maker. At the end of the day, when I finish in my workshop, I can honestly say, the weakness of my body is nothing compared to the weakness of my soul.

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

You can find me at the following places on the internet:

Black Powder Incense – My Website

Makin’ Sense


One Response to “About BPI”

  1. columbcille Says:

    Hey I was pointed to you by an Armenian Facebook friend, though he couldn’t find you in fb anymore…

    I’ve made loose incense for a long time but am wanting to learn Church style incense making, it’s a great hobby of mine. I was hoping we could network if you could give me some contact info I would LOVE to chat!

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