Saturday, April 10, 2010

Roxie's Inspirational Plethora of Altars

I received some great altar pics from Roxie, a Catholic woman who incorporates a lots of wonderful nature-connected practices into her spirituality. She has a number of blogs, including one that I found most interesting called The Natural Catholic, which has a lot of content about natural living. Make sure to check out the post Natural Blends, Teas, and Smudges, where she shows how she makes herbal mixtures from (either mostly or all) hand-picked sources.

Indigo had a lot to say about her altars, so instead of putting her description in a quote block, I'm going to put it in a normal format:


I have to say I am indeed a tad obcessed with the home altar. This has been a passion of mine since childhood. I believe having such a diverse cultural background and most influenced by my Lebanese & aboriginal (native american) side. I always was raised with the world around us. I try and teach our children as I was taught mother earth is our ultimate altar . Some of my first altars were made using sticks leaves and little bowls of food I thought that God would be well pleaseed with. I am a curandera , wisewoman , medicine woman , intercessor so the altar is a big part of my life revolving around prayer. I am also a very visual person so I just cannot resist adding to our altars . Recently it has been pine branches and cones which is because I have been working much on protection lately .

I have my main personal altar in the living room , then a kitchen altar where I do much of my prayer work for other people . We then have the children's seasonal nature altar in our sunroom. One of my fav altars though is my very simple outdoor one once again in my personal outdoor prayer space. I have now begun helping others with thier at home altars ( for free of charge ) collecting items via the thrift or while out doing our wild crafting . I feel even my morning fire is my altar which I place my offerings on for that day.

On my personal altar I also have ietms I never remove, some that are very old which have very much importance and signifigance like a stone from my grandmother and my great grandmother from Lebanon's rosary. Another example is a jaw bone of a coyote (teeth intact). I spent hours digging out of the ground when I was 4yo one summer, only taking a break for lunch. This represents for me how I am to continue to have great preseverence in life. Other items like my eagle feather are very precious but I cannot leave out because the risk of damage is to great so I only bring out for special prayers etc.


Thanks for the pics, Roxie!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Lucas' amazing altar

As promised, here's Nydia's son Lucas' altar. When I first saw it, I thought, how precious. And how cool that a child would want this at such a young age.

But then I thought about my own childhood. I definitely remember collecting and displaying things like souvenirs from vacations, mementos from special events, favorite toys, or just stuff. And I think this is a common, natural urge. Organizing these kind of objects become a way of saying, "this is who I am." And to me, shrines and altars are physical representations of our interior spiritual geographies.

Here's how Nydia describes his altar:

Lucas' altar, on the other hand, it's all boyish. He's got his favorite items chosen by himself, including his drawing board representing the gods, and the colored Goddess and God behind the cauldron. He decided to have an altar about two years ago, and I had this huge smile about it.

A post about his God and Goddess drawing can be found here. And a post about his preparations for Mabon here.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

A two-Altar household

Two is better than one, right? Well, this is a first of posts featuring of the wonderful altars of a Nydia, a "Brazilian Wiccan Mom," and her son, which I'll post next.

Nydia describes her altar as thus:

My altar lies on my bedroom at my mother's house, where I currently live with my 6-year-old little witch. It has old altar tools that I cherish for years, and it gives me a sense of balance on my unbalanced life these days! I keep this dreamboard over it to remind me of what I want in my life. Here is where I light my candles, my incenses, say my prayers to the gods and feel tuned with my witch side.
You can read more from Nydia on her blog Bringing up Salamanders.

And wait till you see her son's altar. You're gonna love it.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

And now for something completely different

I know this breaks my only-one-post-a-day rule, but i just had to post this.

It's a mini wiccan altar for sale on Etsy. And most of the elements are smaller than a penny. You just gotta check out the Pocket Wiccan Altar Set by greenwomancrafts. It's described as thus:

The wand, athame, chalice, pentacle and bowl are all handmade by me from offcuts of wood from other projects (I really hate wasting anything!). The wand and athame are about an inch long, the chalice a little smaller....a penny is shown in the picture for scale. I've included a little shell to represent the goddess, and a piece of antler for the god, and a square of felt as an altar cloth. All packed up in a little box.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Inspiring space dedicated to Hecate, Cernunnos, Dionysos

I am very happy to be posting this sacred space. It is, in fact, the space that inspired me to create this blog. I loved the composition, color palette, and symbolism, as well as the unique way that the practitioner BlueDruid combined shrines to different deities and and a Druidic altar.

You can find the article describing the most recent version of the space on BlueDruid's blog, Of Oak and Ivy. He desribes it as thus:

Heres a close up of just the main main work area minus the Dionysos shrine. The Hekate and Cernunnos shrines are placed as they are on purpose. Cernunnos rests on the main Druidic altar because he is “of the land” and my personal guide to all things Druidic. It some how feels right that he be so intimately connected to the Druid altar, to actually rest upon it. Hekate’s shrine rests above it due to her also having a strong presence in my personal Druidic work, and her being “The Far Removed One”. The Druidic altar itself consists of a few different parts. To the left is my area for the 4 elements. There’s a bowl of earth, a fire pot, an insence burner, and bowl of water. In the center is the “hearth fire”, a triple wicked soy candle that I made with various essential oils pertinent to my work included. In front of the Cernunnos shrine is a leaf shaped dish for offerings to the land spirits and my Druid Plant Oracle Cards which I use to to communicate with him primarily.
There are other great pictures at the end of the link, so make sure you check it out.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Wizardess' Altar for Hestia

Post Your Altar's first submission! From the Wizardess epi at the blog Go Out Beneath the Naked Night

Attached are pictures of my Hestia altar in my kitchen. This is the altar that I change often & pause at daily. When I cook, little pinches of everything get offered to Hestia. It may be a little plain for some, but it works for me & my Goddess!
Thanks, Wizardess! And I think the altar's far from plain. Just right, in my opinion. And definitely in the spirit of Rowan's article Altars Anywhere.

A Simple Altar is Better Than None!

Rowan Pendragon posted a wonderful article about altars called Altars Anywhere on the blog Within The Sacred Mists. It gives a lot of great advice for practitioners who are afraid of creating an altar because it might not be fancy enough.

Rowan writes:
"I have had altars on bedside tables, wall shelves, the corner of a desk, the top of a cardboard box, on a large round wooden table and on a plastic storage tote. Some altars are really obvious and some blend right in with other things in a room so that nobody notices it. While there are traditional ways an altar can be set up and different traditions will designate everything from what direction to point the altar, to the candle colors, to what you can actually have on it. Does that mean it has to limit you in your home altars? No. It’s up to you to decide how you want to work with your altar."

My first Wiccan altar was an old, wooden cigar box/humidifier, upon which I set a single candle, a tarot card I pulled for the day, and my prayer beads. And at that moment, it did all it needed to do: provide a point of meditation and prayer.