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                        Altars (misc. Thoughts)
                            Chris Olmstead

As for Altar set ups...
1.  I once read Crowley's remarks on how he contrived his stuff while he
was out wandering the world or climbing mountains.  He found ways to
just use the simple things from his kit...cook knife became Athame, tin
cup became the Cup...etc.

This sort of 'kitchen witch' working is accepted by lots of folks.  You
can set an altar up and take it down as fast as you can set a table.

2.  I also have noted the "Porto-Pagan" set-ups at some of the Pagan
Fests I've attended.  Carry the stuff in a cardboard box that can be
up-ended for an altar, or even placed on it's side for a rain-proof
'shrine'.  Close and carry off at the end of the visit with a minimum of
re-wrapping to protect the fragiles.
Some just contrive one with the natural objects at hand...a rock, a
stick, a lantern or candle, etc.

3.  Some folks (including myself) have a small duffle into which I've
placed a second set of "traveling" working tools.  I have the great
good-fortune of having friends who give me cool things.  The coolest

stay on my Altar, the second-coolest hang out in the sac, and sometimes
I shift the goodies around.

4.  I have a buncha books that offer arrangements I find a bit Over-
whelming, but I can certainly post them, if you really need them.  If
you want me to fetch out Official Altar diagrams from some of the slick
commercial works I have on the shelf, RSVP.

5.  For "public" Altar, in my home, I 'clutter' a shelf, a mantle, or a
small window sill.  It sounds to me as though, since all your stuff is
packed andyour space is totally compressed, that the "window sill" Altar
is a good solution for you.  I put a little origami pinwheel up on an
Eastern sill, a small shell on a Western one, a tiny oil lamp on a
Southern one, and a pretty rock on a Northern one.  The whole House is
the Altar "Table".

To clear my space I have been known to light a stick of incense, scaling
it upward in my mind until I am swinging a huge flaming brand before the
various Darks I'm dispelling, and run through the house screaming and
raving aloud until they back off.  A joss stick lasts about 20 minutes. 
I can almost guarantee that if you summon your Ki and Incant over a
flaming brand for 15 minutes, most Shadows _will_ go elsewhere.  I
haven't had to do it in THIS house more than twice in 3 years.


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