Updated: Mar 22, 2018
A personal altar is about creating a sacred place in your home (or maybe your work) to serve as your Soul Center. It is not just a beautiful little nook, but a place for you to sit near to focus on your intentions, draw upon for peace, guidance and meditation, activate new energies and ideas and invite more love into your life.
I little more than a year ago, I created my very first personal altar. It was a new concept to me that I was introduced to through Sacred Year, an online class through the amazingly inspirational Anni Daulter of Sacred Living Movement. I instantly fell in love with this concept, quickly embraced it and have cherished it ever since.
So why a personal altar? No, this isn’t about worshiping yourself, LOL. A personal altar is about creating a sacred place in your home (or maybe your work) to serve as your Soul Center. It is not just a beautiful little nook, but a place for you to sit near to focus on your intentions, draw upon for peace, guidance and meditation, activate new energies and ideas and invite more love into your life. It is the place you can come to focus on being your truest, purest self.
Your altar is a visual reminder of who you are, what is important to you, and what makes you feel beautiful, peaceful and joyful. Your altar is a place for you to unplug and disconnect from the world around you for just a short while so you can find your center and reconnect.
Creating a personal altar is simple.
1- Select a location. Find a place that you can easily sit in peace at some point during your day, preferably a space that you feel connected to. You saw our circle altar, you don’t need a lot of space! It can be the nightstand in your bedroom, a little corner near a window, any place that affords you a few moments of quiet when you think you will need your altar most.
2- Choose the items for your altar. Maybe you have a theme in mind; your faith or religion, meditation, healing/health, or just let your vision board help guide you in creating a theme around the 3 words you chose. If you are new to this, don’t worry about a theme, just choose items that you are instinctively drawn to. Items you may like on your altar include: your vision board, a long burning candle, a quote book, a favorite photo of you or someone special, elements from nature including flowers, herbs, rocks, sticks, feathers, shells, leaves and more, religious icons, crystals, nature photos, incense or essential oils, a childhood photo, inspirational quotes or books, oracle cards, a pretty piece of fabric or silk scarf, or a special nick-knack. I would really encourage you to include your 3 words somewhere on your altar! (here is more about choosing words instead of creating resolutions)
3- Arrange your altar. Have fun with this part. Connect with your child spirit! I love to use an old crate (or a new one like you find at the craft stores), because I mostly like to sit on the floor when I come to my sacred place/altar. You can use an end table or maybe you chose your nightstand or a window sill. Just arrange your items in whatever feels right to you. Whenever I create a new altar or rearrange mine, I like to sit in front of it and just hold each object and feel where it would like to go. Remember, there is no right or wrong way to arrange your altar. You mind find you like to have more than one altar. We have a family altar in our family room but I also have a personal altar in bedroom.
4- Use your altar. This is a powerful space for you! You chose each item for a reason and you deserve to have a sacred spot of your own. Perhaps you want to start by offering a blessing or prayer or just sit and give thanks to yourself for creating this special altar. The more you come to it, the more peace and energy will come to your from it! Light the candle and apply a dab of a special essential oil each time you come to sit with your altar, even if it is just for a few minutes. Learn to give yourself permission to sit at your altar longer and longer. You are so worthy of that time. Use the time at your altar to meditate, pray and journal. Start your day there to set an intention for the day or end it there as a ritual for giving thanks. Just use it and enjoy it!
In addition to a personal altar, consider creating a family altar. A few weeks ago, to start the new year, my kids and I created a family altar in our family room near our little woodstove, under a sunny window. We each gathered several items that were meaning to us. I included a photo from a special spot our family has been going for decades plus shells I have collected from there, a truth card I made, a picture of the kids and I together an a little prayer flag I got when the Tibetan monks visited recently. My daughter included a photo of her horse, a picture of her and her brother, a gift from some special friends, a letter I had written her, a Star of David Necklace and some makeup since she expresses her creativity that way. My son included a letter his sister wrote him on a day he was feeling blue, a goofy picture of him an his friends, a picture of his cat, a Lego figurine, and his pendulum. We also each include “magic wands” we made with crystals we love, our sacred candles we decorated, a special rock or crystal from our collection placed in front of our candles and a little note card each with our words for the year. We added our family gratitude journal and a book of quotes we like to read from. A couple times a week, we sit here together, light our candles, read a quote, write in our gratitude journal and just sit for a few minutes. Sometimes we even play a game here. It is just a nice spot to disconnect from our phones, take a break from home schooling and talk for a few minutes.