How to create a Sacred Altar for your Sharing Circle
The art of creating the sacred altar (or centrepiece) is a magical and mystical aspect of a Sharing Circle.
As participants arrive at your Sharing Circle, they see the sacred altar at the centre of the space. This acts as the focal point of your Circle. It is the gateway into the Circle dimension of time and space. It is the anchor point that each participant’s energy passes through.
…each women connects to her own centre, connects with the centre of the circle, and feels like both a spoke and a part of the rim. Invisibly part of a wheel, connected to everyone else in the circle through the centre. This is what makes circle a sacred space.
– Jean Shinoda Bolen in The Millionth Circle
The Power of the Sacred Altar
The centrepiece is a powerful contribution to the wider experience of your Circle. Dedicating the care and time to create (or co-create) the altar is always worthwhile.
An altar is something that, when you behold it, it brings you back to yourself.
– Margot Adler in Drawing Down the Moon
Sacred Altars may be complex or simple.
You can create them as part of your own preparation or ritual.
Or, you can co-create the centrepiece in ceremony with the circle participants.
As with everything in your Circles, your approach will be an expression of who we are and how you hold space.
When you’re planning and creating your altar, remember it:
is a representation of your intention for the sacred space
brings a beautiful focal point to the Circle
gathers the energies of all present in the Circle
is a ritual process in co-creation
8 Steps to Create your Sacred Altar with Intention and Beauty:
Take time to connect with your intention and the meaningful purpose of your Circle.
Start to collect the materials and items that represent your intention and theme.
Decide if you will create the centrepiece alone or within your Circle. If you will co-create, extend an invitation to the women gathering to bring an item to add. You may wish to be prescriptive in line with your theme or simply ask them to bring an item that has meaning to them.
Choose a beautiful piece of fabric, sarong, scarf or invest in an altar mat, cloth or tray.
Think about the colours you wish to us and what they can represent:
- Red for playfulness, vulnerability, passion, energy, fire, root chakra, maiden archetype
- Orange for warmth, enjoyment, nurturing, creating new things, sacral chakra, mother archetype
- Yellow for cheerfulness, self-power, focus, self-esteem, individuality, solar plexus chakra, wild woman archetype
- Green for connection, harmony, balance, compassion, forgiveness, heart chakra, medicine woman archetype
- Blue for freedom, space, clarity, communication, truth, throat chakra, muse archetype
- Indigo for inspiration, wisdom, perception, intuition, third eye chakra, wise woman archetype
- Purple for transformation, shape shifting, crown chakra and priestess archetype
Choose items to represent the elements:
Fire: candles or red flowers
Water: a bowl of water or a mirror
Earth: stones, soil or crystals
Choose items for their beauty and function:
Plan how you will lovingly and intentionally dismantle your centrepiece. You may choose to do this as part of you Closing Ritual, inviting to reclaim their item. Or you may do this as your own personal ritual after everyone has gone.
Create a Sacred Altar for your On-Line Sharing Circle
If you’re holding an on-line circle, there are many ways you can create the altar:
How will you Create your Sacred Altar?
I would love to hear how you create your altar or centrepiece for your women’s circles. How you approach the process for your in-person and and on-line Circles?
In Circle School, we explore the power of the altar together with creating and sharing ritual and ceremony in in women’s circles. If you are seeking a practical, wholehearted and radical women’s circle facilitation training, I invite you to join us in Circle Skills.
5 powerful reasons to say “yes’ and attend your first or next Women’s Circle!
When I attended my first Women’s Circle I was new to town, know very few people and I was pregnant. It was a decision that showed me the incredible power of coming together in Circle.
Since that day, Circles have taken me on a personal journey of self-discovery through sisterhood. In answering the call to facilitate Circles, I was responding to something deep and ancient within me.
I have witnessed the transformation that can take place for women in this sacred space; I have deepened my connection with myself, rediscovered my self-worth and ignited my connection with spirit. My wish is for all women to experience this for themselves (whether it be in person or on line).
Next time you’re given the opportunity to be part of a Women’s Circle say YES:
– It is a safe Sacred Space
Joining a Women’s Circle is entering a Sacred Space.
You will be seen, heard and accepted just as you are.
You will be invited to share yourself with the women in the group.
Your truth will be met with love and received without judgment.
This is a time when we have become accustomed to dimming our light, trying to fit in and keeping quiet. It is incredibly affirming to share who you are and be held with love.
– What is personal is universal
You will see yourself reflected back time and again as you listen to women sharing their stories, their journeys and their experiences . As each women shares, she helps another woman to take a step closer to wholeness. In Circle we begin to understand that we were never alone. You will be filled with hope and inspiration to face your own fears and challenges as you listen to other women share their scars.
– Sisterhood is more than friendship
The experience of a sisterhood is deeper and broader than friendship. You may meet incredible women who become life long soul sisters, or you may not. What you will experience in a Women’s Circle, is a deep connection with kindred spirits. A connection that is not reliant on shared interests or backgrounds or choices! You will share a soul level connection and get a glimpse of the spiritual truth that all is one.
– How might your life be different if you say “yes”?
I believe that if you take the leap and attend your first Women’s Circle, it won’t be your last! But, even if you only attend one Women’s Circle in your life, you will learn something about yourself. You will learn about your place in the world, what is possible for you, how aligned you feel with your purpose. You will learn what it is to be fully accepted just as you are in that moment. A Women’s Circle has the capacity to change your life in subtle but powerful ways. You will also be inspired to incorporate self-loving practices and rituals into your life.
– It’s FUN!
A Women’s Circle can sound very serious, after all they are sacred. In my experience they are incredibly fun too. There may be tears of surrender and release, but also of joy, laughter, moments of pure magic and moments of blissful connection. Spontaneous fun is sparked when women gather together with open hearts and minds.
So, how are you feeling? Ready to give it a whirl and dip your toe into a Women’s Circle? If you’re a little nervous, please know that you will be welcomed with love and honoured for who you are.
Here are my tips for attending a Women’s Circle:
– come with an open heart and an open mind and let go of any expectations
– set your intention to be fully present during the Women’s Circle. And if you’re attending on-line, don’t multi-task, this is your sacred time!
– be brave and share (you don’t have to bare your soul but share something of yourself)
– enjoy yourself!
– take time after the Women’s Circle to journal on your experience and anything that came up for you
Please let me know if you go to your first Women’s Circle. I would love to hear about your experience. Please leave a comment below or feel free to email me at email@example.com.
In the meantime please come and join my free facebook community The Spirited Sisterhood – an online circle of spirited and spiritual women embracing the support of sisterhood.
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Thank you for joining me!
I honour your journey and I bow to your courage.
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