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Question of the Week: 113

Pagan Problem Children: What Can We Do About Them?

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Responses: [2,666]

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 Author:    Posted: Sep. 8, 2002   This Page Viewed: 20,978,881  

Vox Q Stats

Times Viewed: 32,767

Reponses: 103

Lurker/Post Ratio: 318 to 1

Question of the Week: 97 - 2/2/2003

What Natural Objects Are On Your Altar?

Do you have sticks or stones or shells on your altar? How did you come by them? What do you use them for?

Do you go by the traditional correspondences in using your ritual tools (colors, gemstone properties, elements, etc) or do you let the object ‘tell’ you what it is to be used for?

What is your favorite magical/magickal gift or tool from nature? Why?

How do you set up your personal altar(s)?

 Reponses:   There are 103 responses posted to this question. Reverse Sort 

Personal Energy Feb 5th. at 10:01:43 pm EST

Lilly Pond Wolf (Mnachester, NH) Age: 38 - Email

Some of my things on my alter, a round white birch bark pentegram that my Native American friend made for me. I put my moonstone, sunstone & elemental stones around it. A large conch shell that my mother gave to me from the Bahamas, my twisted bittersweet wand, abalone shell with white sage & tobacco, stones, copper, crystals, sea salt in a handcarved wooden chalice from Poland. It really depends on what I am doing. I'm a moonchild, Cancer the crab, so I am drawn to water. I may have seaweed, stones or certain herbs on my alter. The main reason I have the things that I choose to put on my alter is that it reminds me of my memories, it helps me in my magick. I have a boxturtle shell that I found on a ponds' sand dune, it helps me connect with Mother Earth. Alot of the time my alter is a rock by a Lake, I find things as I go, the Goddess gives them to me, pine needles & oakmoss for incense, some fresh water mussel shells, stones. I thank Nature for the gifts I get. I always give something back with acknowledgement & Thanks. A poem that I live by, from Healing Planet Earth: From the depths of my being I thank the earth, wind & water. I thank the sun, moon & stars. I thank the grains in the fields & the trees in the forest. Because of them I am here. I am one with the earth. I am one with nature. I am one with all plant & animal species. Through my daily thoughts & actions I vow to preserve & keep them for future generations. Blessed Be ) 0 (

My Altar. Feb 5th. at 10:42:45 pm EST

Luna (Clearwater, Florida) Age: 18 - Email

I try to keep quite a few natural items on my altar. I place fresh flowers on it whenever I find some nice ones. Right now I have some purple flowers of some kind. I also have 2 nice shells that I found at the beach one day, plus a couple pine cones. I always keep some earth in a little dish, and some water. The altar really is very simple, but it means a lot to me. :)


Crystals, Rocks And Sticks... Oh, My... Feb 6th. at 12:10:44 am EST

Alex (Louisville, Ky) Age: 30 - Email

I have to say that about half of my 'alter' is natural. From the Pink Quartz of Healing to the various sticks that I have from, picking them up from the ground. At the same time I have a very hoaky looking katana, and a statue of a knight for protection. So its half and half and gone with the wind...

My Altar... Feb 6th. at 12:14:25 am EST

Fiona (Sydney, Australia) Age: 31 - Email

i have only recently set up a permanent altar due to opposition from my other half. he is finally "getting it" that my path is true and works for me. i have covered the top of a chest of drawers with a beautiful piece of silver organza and have on there crystals in colours to represent the four quarters (smoky quartz, clear quartz, carnelian and sodalite) , silver and gold candles to represent the Goddess and God, a pebble engraved with a pentacle, leaves, shells and various items that change from week to week - artwork/pics of faeries, landscapes & ascended masters, other crystals, photo's of people who require healing, etc. it is a joy for me to look at my altar every morning and connect with my path in a tangible way. bright blessings to all from a sister in Australia.

My Alter Feb 6th. at 7:11:33 am EST

Jera MorningOwl (Whitby, Ontario) Age: 15 - Email - Web

My alter changes alot due to changes in season and Sabbat. Right now My alter has very little that is natural on it (except for sea salt, water, and a feather) . Usually I have crystals, stones, twigs, willow wreaths, and leaves on my alter. I let the object choose me, I dont go looking for tools. for example, my wand is pretty untraditional. It was made by a native woman, and it is a feather with the lower part wrapped in leather. Ther is a long quartz crystal attached to the bottom as well. It is decorated with colourful beads. I love it!

Why And Altar Feb 6th. at 9:14:37 am EST


OK why and what is an altar, I just found your site and would like to learn more. were can I find out all this stuff.Barb.

My Alter... Feb 6th. at 9:31:39 am EST

wendella (kenosha, wi) Age: 38 - Email

Although I do not have an altar set up in my home, I consider mother earth to be my alter. Whenever I go outside to enjoy her splendor, I listen, give thanks, leave a gift, etc. I am growing worried for my altar however. With Bush in office, we may not get to enjoy what we have due to the proposed Forest Management Initiatives. Visit to find out what is going on. It is important for us pagans to stick up for our mother earth. Just listen to her, she is crying for what is being done. I feel the pain inside me everyday.

When the day comes for me to set up that alter at home, I will have many natural objects on it.

Blessed be to all!

My Altar Feb 6th. at 11:09:45 am EST

Glen_Dweller (Virginia) Age: 33 - Email - Web

I collect sea shells under moonlight, and I keep different ones on my altar at different times. I love the
broken ones where only the inner spiral remains. I love the worn ones and the shells with bitty fossils stuck to them.
I also collect driftwood at times and have a wonderful triangle shaped piece that I am currently using as my wand. I also keep
rose quartz on my altar; it was given to me by my true love, who shares my walk on this path! I keep a small vial of oil or hand-squeezed honeysuckle juice
on my altar and I use it to anoint candles as I do my magik.

My altar is haphazard; I have many candles on it right now, as it is still decorated for Imbolc. I used candles of many colors representing
the wonderful spring to come. Also, my Imbolc candle is still on my altar and I will light it every day for 19 days (Brigid's number) .
I have various statuettes: Diana, Shiva, Kokopelli, Budda. I keep them spread out amongst the candles. I keep my runes on the altar as well.

The Opinion Non-mormon Girl From Utah Feb 6th. at 12:12:31 pm EST

Samantha (Farmington) Age: 15 - Email

I mainly use candles and inscents but when i am outside i like to use a staff in my altar. I dont ushually do an altar outside because my neighbors would get really freaked out.

Magick From Nature Feb 6th. at 12:13:35 pm EST

Heather Holt (Bountiful, Utah) Age: 16 - Email

I collected a sea shell in California about eight years ago that I now use on my altar. I also have a feather to represent air. I use both to represent elements. I also have a stone tha I use to represent earth. I came by the stone and the feather while on a hike. I felt that they should be used for representation of the elements.

My favorite tool is my bowl of salt. It's so amazing that the two different component of salt alone are deadly but together, they are a necessictiy of life.

I set my altar up according to the elements. My rock is north, feather east, seashell west, and candle south. All the othre God tools go right, and all the other Goddess tools go left.

Altars Are Dynamic As You Are Feb 6th. at 1:06:15 pm EST

Green bird (remote Alaska) Age: 37 - Email

My altar changes with the seasons, moon, tides and my mood and need. To the mundane, it just looks like a window side table, but to the initiated it is clear what it is. Today, my altar stands fairly sparse. Four candles stand upon a bare table on an open window. One large scented pine cone candle set upon an open pedistal stand, one large bayberry scented candle in a cobalt blue shielded holder, and two beeswax tapers in clear crystal taper stands. This is for cleansing and peace. A dear friend just passed away from a severe heart attack in a remote location. We are waiting now for better weather to transport his body out to the city and to his parents. I lit the candles in his honor and prayed for the comfort and solace of his family and friends.

Soon, my altar will reflect the coming spring. I will place budding branches of salmonberry and blueberry upon it with a clean woven cloth covering the table. White and pale green candles will illuminate the 5-pointed "snowflake" crystal star that hangs over the altar. And all will be scented with nag champa, sage, and pinyon incense. By summer time, there will be seedlings and potted herbs on my altar, with sacred stones and shells, the candles will mostly dissapear as our sun takes over the season and we no longer have complete darkness to make the candles shine.

My altar must contain natural objects at all times. Many of them are objects that I've collected over the years and are rotated accordingly. Some objects seem to choose me as I am out walking in the wilderness and demand to be displayed. I am always pleasently surprised when a seemingly meaningless object that I had an urge to place out, all of a sudden takes on significance. I try to keep to the traditional meanings of objects, but sometimes they have a "mind of their own" and want to be used differently or not at all and instead I am directed to use a different object. It is amazing how often that urge turns out to be significant.

I always keep in mind that it is not the objects that are used in ritual that give the direction, the power, if you will, but your own personal will and focus that creates the needed energy. All are equally capable of performing ritual and mackical workings with just the use of your mind, heart, soul and body, no props necessary. Blessed Be To All, and To All Safe and Successful Workings.

The Hidden Altar Feb 6th. at 2:15:03 pm EST

Emrys Wledig (Yuma, AZ) Age: 40 - Email

Our Altar is made up of a sacred cloth, one large golden candle anointed with peppermint oil and a brass triple candle holder a black, square, ceramic bowl with polished rocks in the bottom. Everything else comes and goes by the season. The reason for the sacred cloth is so that any mundane surface can be easily and quickly turned into a sacred space for ritual or magickal work. We inherited some beautiful marble end tables when we bought our home in 97 and these usually become the base for the altar, but, a piece of plywood on sawhorses have also served in that capacity. The hearth of our fireplace has also served. The island and table in the kitchen as well. Oh and the Blanket box at the foot of our bed has once or twice played that role. We have firiends that we are very open with, but there are relatives that would be hurt by the knowlege of our religious preference, and since we love themk, we maintain a certain degree of discretion. All the items listed above remain in view of any occupant of our home, but only certain people know what they are. The loved ones would never dream of asking how they are used because each of the items have a mundane as well as a religious and magickal use. And since they are usually seen on shelves and counter tops they are easily located and assembled for their special purposes.

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