how to create a sacred altar space in your home

How to create a sacred altar space in your home

sacred altar space

What Is a Spiritual Altar?

The word "altar" is derived from words meaning "a high place." So, not only does the word refer to elevation in the literal sense as it is often created on a raised structure, but figuratively as well. However, there are instances where altars are made as a centerpiece on the floor for a spiritual ritual often involving a group. Spiritual altars are a visual metaphor for our spiritual journey, which provides us with somewhere to go when we feel hopeless, broken-hearted, and lost. As we sit, kneel, stand, or lie at our altar and surrender our burdens to a higher power, we can feel a sense of being supported by a spirit team, which includes ancestors, sacred ones, and spirit guides like animal spirits. It's also where we can connect our inner self with our physical world. But altars do not have to be a place where we only bring our sorrows. We can also celebrate our wins by expressing feelings of elation, joy, and gratitude in this sacred space.

create a sacerd altar space

"What Is a Spiritual Altar Used For?

Spiritual altars are sacred spaces used to pray, meditate, worship, and practice rituals. Practices at the altar can be focused on oneself, another, or a situation. Offerings are placed on the altar for our ancestors and/or the deities closely aligned with our spiritual journey. These offerings may include food, beverages, candles, incense, flowers, even a beer or a cigar if that's what your ancestor desires. Many like to honor their ancestors. It's a way to give thanks for their support of our human experience.

quartz candles for sacred altar spaceWhat Is the Meaning Behind a Spiritual Altar?

A spiritual altar can carry many different meanings. You may want to set up an altar in memory of the loved one who has transitioned. Or create an altar dedicated to manifesting money, calling in the love of your life, inspiring creative expression, or protective evil eye. Other altars may pay homage to deceased pets or honor Mother Earth. For specific areas of focus within our lives, you could write a petition or a letter to God or a higher power asking for something specific and then place it on your altar. If you want to create an altar to call in spring because you're so over the winter weather, you can do that, too. Let your imagination go wild.

how to build a spiritual altar

How Do You Build a Spiritual Altar?

To build an altar, include a representation of the four elements — earth, air, water, and fire. Don't overthink it. Each element can be represented by everyday things we may already have in or around our home. You build it to how you feel. Use all or a combination of the following to create the desired space.


Representing “fire,” one of the four elements of nature, a lit candle helps light the way for the spirit to return.


A living plant or fresh flower on your altar is a great way to symbolize the earth.  Choose which items represent earth energy for you and place them with intention in the “north” or lower left corner of your altar.

circe boutique sacred altar space tutorial


A photo of the person being remembered is an important centerpiece of any altar.


A sweet bread flavored with anise, orange peel and glaze, the bread of the dead represents the souls of the dead and “earth,” one of the four elements of nature.


A towel and soap are left on the altar for the spirits to refresh themselves after a long journey.


Placing crystals in an altar elevates and amplifies their innate power, signaling to the Universe to focus high vibrational energy in that area.

A crystal altar can attract positive transformational experiences to your life, activating higher and higher levels of awareness and understanding.


The aromatic smoke of incense is used to help guide a loved one’s spirit home.

aromatic smoke for sacred altar space


A glass of water placed on the altar awaits a thirsty, travel-weary soul. It also represents “water,” one of the four elements of nature.


A towel and soap are left on the altar for the spirits to refresh themselves after a long journey.

In Summary:

  1. An altar is a special space that can be used for spiritual practices, meditation, or simply as a place to find peace and grounding
  2. An altar can be as simple or elaborate as you like, and can include items that have special meaning or significance to you
  3. Some common items to include on an altar are crystals, candles, incense, and images or symbols that hold personal significance
  4. It is important to create an altar in a space that feels peaceful and inviting, and to take care to keep it clean and organized
  5. An altar can be a powerful and meaningful addition to your home, and can provide a sense of connection to your spiritual practice or beliefs


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