Friday, April 5, 2013

Current Altar/Shrine Photographs

My shrine/altar is where I perform more formal devotions to the Gods as well as a place to do magic.  I don't actually use it that much, although I keep planning on using it more... I am more likely to practice magic in a relevant place (a confidence spell in my truck before a job interview, for example) and my devotions to the Gods usually take place in nature rather than in my house.  Still, it serves as a useful reminder for me and a good place to hold some of my magical tools.

The above is the whole shrine.  This a modification of its "storage position," although my wand is usually perpendicular to where it is now and to the side and the offering dish is usually on the left.  I like having a lot of space so I can just set things on my altar when I need to (occasionally mundane things wind up there, but usually more things like candles purchased for spells).

There's a cauldron I got for a dollar at a thrift store, a prayer jar, three candles (not counting the one in the bowl), a "treasure box," a shell with a smudge stick, a wand, an offering bowl filled with things, a bowl of natron, and several images of my Gods.

I took some close-ups of some pivotal parts of the altar, too:

First we have my main images. I'm considering trying to get a statue of Sekhmet in the same design and putting it with Set and Wepwawet, but right now I don't have the money for that and so she remains in miniature.  Sekhmet is a a new re-addition.  For a long time I considered Set and Sekhmet to be my Patron God and Matron Goddess, before my Kemetic Orthodox RPD said Set and Wepwawet were my Fathers and Sekhmet was first among my Beloveds.  When I gave up Kemetic Orthodoxy I stopped really paying much attention to my Beloveds, but Sekhmet is coming back in my life.

Some people who are only familiar with Wicca would think this altar looked unbalanced because the two primary Gods are both male.  I think this is unnecessarily heterosexist... there are far more ways to achieve balance on an altar than through having a God and a Goddess.  Plus, plenty of people have Goddess-only-oriented altars.

The following are two other altar images:

The above Set was made by my friend Renee Schwarz, which I bought from her Facebook page.  It appeals to me because it just reminds me of something very queer fairy, and my practice really makes note of the queerness of Set.  It's also just a really unique vision of Set which I love.

This is Bawy, a combined form of Set and Horus, or simply Set with a Double Crown.  This is actually a molded piece... there are at least five of these that I either sold or gave away (actually, come to think of it, I painted one in Green Bay Packer colors for a football shrine, so I still have another).  The design is based on a vision dream I had, molded in polymer clay to create a mold.  I still have the silicone mold somewhere so I may make more in the future.

This is an unfinished painting.  The background will likely be busy with symbols when it's finished.  I postponed it because I ran out of pink.  It's a stylized Horus and Set with some more modern imagery in it.  Yup, it's a queer painting.

I freaking love this wand.  When I was making it I posted something on Facebook about creating a wand so phallic it is literally made of penis, and this is that wand.  It's made out of a pizzle stick (bull penis), smoky quartz, amethyst, and black and purple ribbon.

This is my "treasure box."  It has my favorite stones in it (like my giant rough emerald) as well as trinkets and stuff that I don't want to lose.  The box itself was originally a prototype for a portable shrine I was marketing, but there wasn't any interest.

Some stuff I didn't really care to take close-up pictures of:
  • The prayer jar was based on a technique I learned in the Kemetic Orthodox Beginner's Class.  It's really quite an easy bit of heka; I charged the jar and when I get prayer requests that aren't close enough to me for me to want to do some full out magic attack on them I write it down and slip it in here.
  • The three things in the offering bowl include a candle with a sigil I created to prevent anti-Pagan hate crimes, some sand from a Buddhist mandala I saw, and a newly-painted set of runes made out of tamarind seeds.
  • The pencil drawing of Set that's above the treasure box was by me.