The Altars of Samhain
” As above ~ So below”
The microcosm within the macrocosm
Altars add a beautiful layer of intention in whatever way they are used. Altars can be set-up as spaces of devotion to ancestors, Deity, events, etc. The reasons are limitless and they don’t need to be the point of focus for sacred work. Trophies placed just so on a mantle; plates or other curio collections in that special cupboard; pictures of family on a wall. These are all arranged with the same passion of intention that any altar constructed for spiritual work holds.
Samhain is especially a time when ideas and power in selection of altar items is at an all time high. We create beautiful and mysterious altars to evoke the mood for our celebration and in many cases the altar becomes a dining table as our departed beloveds are set a place at the table to join us as we feast in their honor. Today, I am offering some suggestions and lots of pictures for inspiration as you begin to build the image of what your altar will be for Samhain.
(in general).. An Altar Checklist
These are some of the items you may wish to place on your altar:
• Ritual Tools – each representing one of the four elements and placed on the altar in the quadrant which it corresponds to.
• Candles representing the Light within and or to represent the spark of Divinity that is being called as God or Goddess.
• Seasonal items such as pumpkins for Samhain, holly leaves for Yule, spring flowers for Ostara, etc.
• Your Book of Shadows/journal and writing tool.
• Any thing you feel called to place on your altar that will enhance the visual experience of the ritual.
Ritual altars are just one form of creating these pockets of sacred space. Altars can be created for a variety of purposes; devotional, personal workings, meditation and more. There is no right or wrong way to create your sacred space. The important thing is to be creative and to place on your altar what truly and deeply calls to you. This is how the greater connection is made to the inner workings of the ritual and the Divine.
Consider this a photo album of reference for creating your own beautiful space of the Sacred. Enjoy!
Portable Samhain Altar
This was an example given from a workshop about creating portable altars that are discreet and can be arranged in any setting.
Samhain Altars: An Audience with Cerridwen
Coven of the Mystic Path, Annual Samhain Celebration
The Silent Feast of the Ancestors
An Alternate Celebration of Samhain
The Shadow of the Ancestors Ritual
For Examples of Other Altars:
Coven of the Mystic Path, ASW FB page
I set up altars for my workshops, as well as the altars we’ve created for Sabbats and more. Look through the photo albums
More info and pics of Seasonal Altars
An Audio and Visual of a workshop presented at Philadelphia Pagan Pride Day:
Magick on the Go!
Scroll to mid-page to access audio download of workshop and pics