Over the past few days as I’ve engaged on this new “spiritual essentials” challenge, I have wondered what to do with my altar. Since Sunday, I have not done anything with it: I’ve left no offerings, not touched it, and honestly not gone anywhere near it. And I feel rather guilty for it, but I’m not sure what to do.
Since beginning this challenge a few days ago, I have hemmed and hawwed and argued with myself over what to do with my altar. On the one hand, limiting the physical aspects of my spirituality should mean going without the majority of the physical items of my path; on the other, it feels rather wrong to just let it go and collect dust in the corner of my room. Granted, it has happened before during quieter times in my practice, but this time it feels more disrespectful.
And yet I’m unsure what to do.
During this challenge, I want to cut out everything but the very essentials that make up my practice. As I discussed in my post the other day, that is basically my nook (though that’s a second-tier item) and a physical representation of my Patron Anubis in the form of a pendant. Though, I’ll be honest: I don’t yet have one.
A few years ago, it was my crescent moon pendant. Today, not so much. Ever since losing the original pendant and receiving a replacement many months later, it doesn’t feel like the same connection to Anubis as the original had been. Mayhaps I had accidentally charged the first pendant to remind me of Anubis as I touched it; these days I don’t even wear the replacement day to day, but a Celtic trinity knot my mother got me last summer. It, too, has special meaning to me, but it doesn’t remind me of Anubis. I don’t find myself rubbing its smooth surface for comfort when I think of complicated and hurtful issues.
So what to do? Packing away my altar is an option, but the thought of doing that makes me feel…awkward. I feel like it would be akin to me turning my back on the gods and spirits I work with (and I could never pack away my gargoyle Bob just like that, though more on him later – actually, I suppose a gargoyle, or more accurately a grotesque, could be in my spiritual essentials, seeing as how they’re beings that I’ve worked with and loved for many a year).
But I can’t think of anything else to do.