Maintaining Your Altar
Maintaining Your Altar
Today we thought it would be a good idea to discuss maintaining your altars and magickal items. The things you have on your altar are mostly made up of collected items.
Most Pagans and Witches like collecting ornaments, statues, vessels, shells, odd-looking bits and pieces. All humans like collecting, it is in their nature to do so. We collect things that inspire us or please us aesthetically, we also tend to collect things for their rarity. However Pagans and Witches do not only collect for the beauty of an object, we also collect objects for their sacredness, power and connection to certain spirits or beings. It is very important to maintain the dignity of your sacred objects. You do this by displaying them on your altar; but that in itself is not enough. The altar in your house has to be maintained, and that means it must be kept clean, burning incense on it regularly, leaving regular offerings and also having the candles and incense lit on it as often as possible. It is fairly easy to maintain your altar but it can become a bit time consuming if you have many. Using and maintaining your altars should be enjoyable anyway.
Altars tend to get a bit messy if you are leaving offerings of freshly cut flowers; incense and all your collected items collect something of their own, dust! A dusty altar is never attractive, so if yours has a visible layer of dust it is time to do some work for your gods and polish it up for them!
A good clean and dust of the Altar gets the energy flowing through it freely again and ensures that, the energy that is flowing, is free of any other attachment. We find that it is best to clean the altars on the full moon, this way you get to cleanse your crystals in the moonlight as well. The best way to clean crystals is with a bucket of blessed water.
To make a simple blessed water take some clean water. For some that will mean buying water as the water that has been through a chemical treatment plant (i.e. Town Water) is NOT appropriate, the water should be from a natural source a running creek, an underground river, a waterfall, rainwater or simple drinking water that is pure. If you simply cannot obtain water such as those listed please boil the water and then fill a large bowl with it and leave it outside, in a safe position for at least 24 hours. Once you have gathered the water add some salt and make the sign of the pentagram over it five times. Each time that you do say “Spirit of ………(Fire, Air, Water, Earth, Spirit) cleanse this water and give it your blessing.” Once this is done you have blessed water.
To clean the crystals we always use an old toothbrush, this will get into all the little crevasses of your most intricate specimens. There are some crystals however that are too delicate to be washed in this manner, like Okenite which is covered in tiny crystal structures. Also you shouldn’t wash your selenite if it is sodium selenite because water degrades it. After you have cleansed all the power objects on your Altar off, by giving them a good dust and clean (If your a Reiki practitioner you might like to use the Reiki to cleanse the items as well), wipe down the Altar completely with the blessed water as well. Leave the Crystals and any other power objects that are stable enough out in the light of the full moon and leave the altars empty for the night, sometimes we just set up a candle on each and leave it at that.
Sometimes the nicest thing to leave on your altar on the Full Moon empty period is a simple arrangement of flowers with some candles.
At sunset the next day (its best as it’s a threshold time) go out and collect your objects and replace your Altars this will ensure that for the next month your Altar we be free and clear with beautiful energy flowing through it. This is also the time, i.e. the full moon to bury, burn, place into running water the offerings that have been left for the spirits for that month.
As it is full moon, our Altars are empty, and we are waiting for the cleansing light of the full moon to come and bring the new energy of the month in. Happy Full Moon & Blessings to all.
Brad & Sas