Pimp My Altar

Oct 8, 2007

As usual, September has been a whirlwind of activity. My best friend and my parents visited, I redecorated my livingroom and bought myself a new bed for the bedroom and I dug more seriously into my Irish Gaelic studies again. And I finished my altar.

This is the first non-formal altar I've ever had; when I started practicing seriously I worked out of fairly traditional books, and that and my love for Victorianism in all its forms meant I had a really, really stiff altar that never did see a lot of use. It was very proper and thorough, though. It had a wand, and an athame, and a Goddess candle, and a God candle, and a pentacle, and a cauldron, and a bowl of salt and a bowl of water, and all those other things it's supposed to have. I'm pretty sure it looked exactly like the diagram in Wicca for the Solitary Practitioner, actually.

So I went a bit more freeform this time. I knew I had to keep the three-pronged candlabra; my grandmother bought it for me, probably without knowing really what it was for, but it was the first piece I acquired specifically for my altar and I love it. And since my patroness is Brighid, one of the Celtic triple goddesses, that suggested a layout. The altar is kind of roughly divided into three sections, for Brighid's three aspects as Poet, Smith and Healer, and everything else I felt needed to go on there got put wherever it seemed right. The candles are in the colors of fire -- red for the warmth of the hearth-fire, blue for the middle heat of a cooking fire, and white for the power of the forge. The gold chain is for Ogma, who according to legend invented the Ogham alphabet which continues to annoy archaeologists to this day.

And most of the rest of it just feels right. I no longer really remember where the shell came from, but it's always been on my altar and it wanted to stay there. I always buy new pencils in September, it's like a disease; I'm using them for wands. And...I'm wandering over and touching it every day, not necessarily working with it in the way I used to think of working with my altar, but just going over and saying hi. And that's great.

3 comments:

Anna said...

Hurrah, you updated! Ahem.

...was your original altar really that strict? Granted, I don't remember it that clearly, but still.

This? This is way cool. And pencils-as-wands amuses the shit outta me, but also makes a whole lot of sense.

Now I'm kind of growly, because everytime I think I have the area for my altar cleared off and usable, people keep PUTTING things around it. Must. Fix.

Jenavira said...

I thought I'd updated again in September. Turns out I just have a bunch of draft posts saved. *sigh*

It was, rather. It was crowded and pretty, so it didn't necessarily look it, but everything on there was on for a Reason, and it felt too...restrictive to use every day.

Anna said...

You do not have a datajack in your head to update automatically, hon. Not yet, anyway.

I think I need to ditch my strict north-oriented style. (Nor does east, for that matter; I think the easiest would either be south or southwest.) It just doesn't work in the space I have available. I may also put some things in the storage below the table, because I do not need some of this stuff making it cluttered.