I have many Altars/Shrines in my house. I love them and find them a brilliant focus for living your spiritual path daily. Whenever I catch a glimpse of one of mine it makes me smile, think about my chosen deity, give thanks or repeat an affirmation or mantra to myself. I think these small daily connections are really important. The pictures above are of my main house Altar. Its dedicated to 'Elen of the Ways' the Goddess with whom I'm Priestess too.
I have been walking my Path for nearly 20 years (scary!) I first started to explore other spiritualities in my late teens being drawn to Native American philosophies and alternative healing. I eventually took my Reiki 1 & 2, which opened up a whole bunch of doorways much clearer than when I'd previously looked through their cracks. I began walking my Pagan Path much stronger, working closely with the Green Man and a Lady who used to come with him but never gave me a name. Her vision was always so clear, an autumnal woodland full of ancient oaks, a carpet of browns, gold’s and coppers. Her dress of autumn oak leaves an amber acorn at Her throat, cascading flame red hair and a pair of antlers crowned Her head. Now the Green Man use to appear to me a lot....and sometimes he was antlered and sometimes he wasn't. But my Lady always had antlers! When I tried to find out any details in books or on the internet I would always draw a blank and still She never gave me Her name. I knew my Lady wasn't Cerridwen, Brighid or Rhiannon (to name but a few) so I carried on my practices just refering to Her as My Lady. Two or Three years down the Path of working with Her I attended a Pagan Federation Conference in London Whilst there I stumbled across an art card depicting an antlered female wearing a dress of green leaves and a greyhound at her side. Although I knew this wasn't ‘my’ Lady it was the first piece of art I’d ever seen with a horned Goddess and I bought it immediately! That was ‘Elen – by Judith Page’ this was my first encounter with Elen that day, what I didn’t realise was that it wouldn't be my last! I continued wandering around and ended up in an exhibition by the British Visionary Artists. As I came towards the end of the wonderful displays, I came face to face with the most amazing vision. There in the corner was a portrait of my Lady!!! I couldn't believe it! How someone could paint that which I had ‘seen’ for so many years. I asked the artist who it was? His simple reply was “May I introduce you to Elen?” I burst into tears!!! That artist was Iain Lowe and his painting and teaching helped me deepen my Path with Elen, My Lady.
My workings with Elen have come along way since then and She has guided me to some wonderful adventures. I have been running wonderful workshops and weekend retreats devoted to Her for the last three years and Her community is growing! I was lucky enough to walk a part of Her sacred track-way 'Sarn Elen' in Wales last year and I have some amazing adventures planned for this year!!! But I digress.....
My next little Altar is in my Kitchen. I was so blessed a couple of years ago to receive one of the gorgeous 'Source' Goddess statues from my Goddess Girlfriends :o) I was so chuffed!!! I couldn't believe it I'd wanted one for SO long! I don't know why but She has always lived in my kitchen since. I bought Her the beautiful slate bowl to sit in and filled it with Rose Petals, to represent love, and whenever I'm in my kitchen or cooking a meal I light a candle inside Her and let Her energies fill my workings. A small but very powerful gesture, I promise!
This is my little Altar/Shrine in my Hallway. I was drawn to the Buddha head and there's a guy that knows a few things about Spirituality and Life Style huh ;o) Next to him sits my beautiful, bountiful annointing oil Goddess. Her dish has been especially glazed for me so I can use it to hold my Elen Annointing Oil. Whenever I walk passed Her I can just dip my finger in then dab my third eye or rub it through my hands and brush it energetically over my aura.
My final little Altar is in my bedroom. I've always had a little eclectic altar, normally devoted to Love, in there. But I've just recently decided to change it over to a Peace/Gratitude Altar. One of my lovely Goddess Girls bought me this gorgeous Peace Candle and the white silver bowl on the right (actually she has bought me all three of the bowls, at different points) as a Yule gift. The bowls each contain water from the Red and White Springs in Glastonbury and I've placed the Peace candle in the other. I wanted to use the candle for something really special and decided to use it as a gratitude candle. Lighting it each evening as I write in my Journal my gratitudes for the day. I feel that by giving thanks daily I show my appreciation for all the wonderful things that come into my life.
Altars are such a wonderful tool for honouring your Spiritual Path and Journey and mine often change depending on where I am on the Path or what is influencing me at that specific time. Mine also change and reflect during the Wheel of the Year and the changing of the seasons. At the moment they're quite minimal (except the main house one) but that's more because I'm in a place where I need to de-clutter, procrastinate less and focus more right now.
In case you might be interested my Goddesses (except the Elen one that was handmade for me) and Peace Candle came from this fab shop in Glastonbury.