Altars

Altars

Introduction

Altars are an integral part of my practice. I use them as a spiritual connection – somewhere I can pray, meditate and send offerings. I also use them in my craft as a witch – for spells and as a place to focus my energy.
I think altars are important for everyone and not just as a spiritual tool. It’s your space and it’s something that you have complete control over. To tend to it daily also sets up a healthy ritual for your mind; to help focus and calm.

How to Create an Altar

An altar can be literally anything. There really are no rules to how you set it up, what it contains or what you use it for. As long as it’s somewhere you walk past or interact with everyday then it’s classed as an altar. It can be a bookshelf full of your favourite books or a kitchen cupboard full of your favourite teapots and cups or even your garden!

Creating an altar is really about intuition. I use things which I have around the house – I very rarely buy anything new for my altar (but you can totally deck out your space with brand new things if you wish).

Follow this link to my Spellwork and Ritual Category where you can check out some altars I’ve done in the past.

The first thing you need to do is figure out why you’re setting up an altar. If it’s to help you reduce fear or pain in labour for example you would need to put objects on the altar that you associate with these things. An image of a powerful looking pregnant woman, an animal who you find inspiring in birth (elephants help their sisters in labour for example) some stones or oil that is said to aid in childbirth, etc etc.

Secondly, you will need to find things that you associate with your intention. The possibilities are literally endless – the most important thing here is to use whatever it is that you associate with the intention or end result. Something that seems powerful and appropriate for you. The more you do this, the easier it will be.
Also, it’s important that you don’t worry about getting it “wrong”, you don’t want that kind of energy coming through! (plus, it’s yours so you can’t get it wrong).

Finally, I like to have some sort of candle, incense or another kind of object that I need to interact with. I like the idea of having something that goes out into the air around me because I feel like it sends off my intentions into the universe (that will come back to me eventually). You can use this idea, or something else that you associate with the idea of sending out your intention or that you touch/use everyday. Your daily cup of tea is a great example. You could set up a little altar next to the jug with your favourite cup, favourite tea, a stone or some other object on top of a doily or cute placemat. Then when the jug boils you could meditate over your intentions, visualise what you want to happen or inhale the steam ritually. Use your imagination and come up with something that really resonates with you.

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29/10/13 – Game Changer

29/10/13 - Game Changer

About a week or two ago I decided to drop out of University which is a massive decision for someone who does everything to avoid feeling like a ‘failure’.

Studying Naturopathy has been my rock and only constant since I graduated high school four years ago. After some reflection and a heart-to-heart with my husband, I realised that a part of me was holding on to something that didn’t quite fit into my life anymore.
In recent years I’ve experienced the system, particularly the education system. I had my head constantly filled to the brim with knowledge (some of it seemingly irrelevant) only to find it empty after a short break or during exams. I experienced the highs of my anxiety leading up to deadlines and the lows of depression during my downtime.
I’ve been riding these emotional waves for four years and to be completely honest I’m very tired of it.

I still intend to become a herbalist but I’m going to wait a few years before I try again. I very much believe in the power of herbal medicine and nutrition and part of me knows that to heal others I must first heal myself.

26/08/13 – Anxiety

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I’ve suffered from what I call ‘anxiety’ for a good portion of my life. It’s always been there and I don’t think I can remember a time when I was free from it . Even now as I sit here writing this, I can feel my anxiety rising and my self talk responding most unkindly.

It is when this happens that I like to write. For years I thought that my anxiety defined me, that it was a part of my personality. On my bad days I thought there was something wrong with me. I tended to worry so much about things that no one else worried about; I used to get so frustrated. It was only when I graduated that I found a name for it and writing in my journals has really helped me find a cure.

After graduating I did a major spring clean of my life. I basically isolated myself for a month; I stayed in a country town with my family without much contact from my friends or family. I cleaned up my diet and started exercising regularly. I wrote everyday. I wrote about my thoughts, my dreams, what I thought they all meant. I documented conversations I had with people. I talked myself through a lot of my own issues, I saw the people in my life that were doing me more harm than good and I made the changes necessary so that I could live a full and happy life. When I look back on that time, I wonder how I found the strength to do what I did.

It’s times like this when I can feel my heart racing for no reason, when my breathing is shallow and my mind is telling me that I’m doing everything wrong that I’m grateful to journal writing. At one point I didn’t even know the triggers and I actually believed what my anxiety was saying to me. At this point in my life I can safely say that I have control over it and I’m doing all I can to hopefully be rid of it for good.