Build an Altar

How and Why to Create an Altar


To create an altar is an intuitive way to uplift and clear a space. It is also a way of communicating with your helping spirits and/or Source, much like building a ritual. This can be a fun and creative process, so let loose.

You can create one altar in your space or, if you’re like me, your entire house may be an ever-evolving altar. There really aren’t any restrictions and it is important for you to follow your intuition.

Where should I create an altar?

Because it is such an intuitive process, you can create an altar anywhere you choose. Most of my altars are in my home and work space. I also like to create altars outside on the land, both in my yard and in places that I find scared. I typically create one with every ritual that I do. Although, it isn’t necessary to have an altar for a ritual.

You should place an altar in a prominent position where you can see and interact with it on a regular basis. It is a living thing, so it should not be built and just forgotten about. It can evolve over time, just as you do.

What are the components of an altar?

You will need an open flat surface to start with. I like to use a table, bench, desk, shelf, mantle or an open space on the earth.

Next, you will need items that are sacred to you in some way. You can use anything that has meaning for you. I love to have something living on my altar, so I usually choose to use a plant or some flowers as one of the components. I also like to acknowledge the elements in my altars, so I usually have something that represents Earth, Air, Fire, Water and Sacred Space. The important thing is that you use items that have significance to you and your purpose for creating an altar. For instance, when creating an alter for my ancestors, I use old family pictures. When creating an alter for abundance, I may use money or other things that represent abundance to me.

An altar in nature
This altar was created during an abundance ritual. It was created on ice over a river so that when the ice melted, the water added its strength to the ritual by taking the altar and washing it down the river.

Activating your altar

Once you have created a beautiful altar that has meaning for you and your life, you must activate it. Activating your altar is what brings it to life. You can activate it by praying or communing with your helping spirits and asking them to infuse it with their power. You can also visualize activating it with your own power. I like to sing and drum over my altar. Activating your altar is an intuitive process just as building it is, so however you feel called to do it is fine.

You can enjoy your altar for as long as you feel called to do so. If it is an altar that lives with you for a long time, you may feel called to activate it on more than one occasion during its lifetime.

You also may feel called to change your altar every once in a while. This evolution is a natural process…as you reap the benefits of the altar in your space, you will grow and develop. The altar must grow and develop with you. Change it when you feel like called to.

Deactivating your altar

Once you feel like you’ve moved through the energy you created with your altar, it is time to deactivate it. Deactivating your altar is a process of giving gratitude to the helping spirits who you invoked while creating it. It is also giving thanks to the items for loaning their power and energy to your altar.

You can speak your gratitudes aloud or in your mind while you are taking the items away. I like to offer the dying flowers to the land or to a compost pile while thanking them for transmuting energy and uplifting the space. You can also sing and drum to express gratitude. Any way you choose to do it will be right for you.

Stay Connected with Cypress.

Join Singing Cypress To Receive The Latest News And Updates

Hi, I'm


I’m a seer, healer and an artist.
I specialize in stained glass
medicinal art and shamanic bodywork. I have a great desire and passion to facilitate profound healings and rituals that empower my clients to strengthen their connection to their highest source. In my experience, this connection is a foundational part of healing.

Recent Posts