Inspiring Enchantment & Illumination with Tarot & Intuitive Guidance

The Faery Altar

Neither substance quite, nor shadow,
Haunting lonely moor and meadow,

Dancing by the haunted spring,

Riding on the whirlwind’s wing…

— from A Faery Speaks by Sir Walter Scott

Yesterday, I began a discussion about building an altar as a way to begin to connect to the Fair Folk in your home or garden. Of course, I realize that altars are usually associated with places of worship. So let me be clear that I am not suggesting that we worship the Fae. This would absolutely not be appropriate, for while they are powerful, ancient, magical beings, and direct manifestations of the Lord and Lady, well… so are we!

Although I urge that you approach them with a spirit of greatest respect, neither is it wise to be overly humble or obsequious. The benevolent Folk will be repulsed by such behavior (as most of your human friends would be) and the less friendly ones may take it as an invitation to do mischief.

Alicen Geddes-Ward writes, “Faeries, as a quirk of their nature, dislike very much being thanked and profuse displays of gratitude. However, in contrast they also demand your respect. This is a careful balance to maintain and you should always be thoughtful in your approach.”

Hence, again, my emphasis that as you journey this path, you learn to open your awareness and listen carefully with all your ways of knowing.

The main functions of your altar are to give you a way to focus, helping you bridge the mundane with the magical realms, and as a place where you can leave offerings. So, your altar can take many forms. Let it be an expression of your creativity and joyfulness, for those energies are most appreciated and call to the Folk.

For instance, you may wish to celebrate the otherworldly aspects of the Fair Folk, decorating with sparkly objects, feathers, twinkling faery lights, crystals, glittery baubles and pretty trinkets.

Or you may wish to honor their more elemental, Earthy energy, with special stones, moss, roots, bark, branches, shells, driftwood, or plants.

In all cases, you should not place your athame on this altar, and likewise avoid objects containing lead (like stained glass or wands that have lead solder). The Good People are well known to dislike iron, and to be safe, I would simply recommend that you refrain from placing metals on your Faery altar, with the big exception of silver and gold pretties.

This weekend, I hope you’ll spend some time finding a special place to create your own faery altar. Next week, I’ll share lots more ideas!

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  • May 23, 2008, 12:05 pm Madeline

    WHAT A LOVELY IDEA! We have a large backyard and it is scattered with statues and gnomes and pretty thingies here and there.I have my MAIN altar in my work space in my home.. but outdoors..I am going to go out there and do a REAL altar beneath the lemon tree.. we can see that space form the patio where we sit in the evenings–thank you for a very nice idea for this weekend!MADELEINE