Setting Sacred Space with an Altar

September 19, 2021

Shamans begin every ceremony and healing practice by setting sacred space. The veil that obstructs your view of the spirit world is thinner in sacred space, giving potency to your intentions and prayers. When you open up sacred space, you are directing your energy into the present moment and calling in your spirit helpers to assist in protecting your container for your intentions and prayers. Whether you speak them aloud or hold them within your heart, you call in and command the unseen energies into your sacred space.

Sacred space may be created anywhere—indoors or in nature—and it may be any size—big or small. Sacred space may even be a space within—a state of being that you carry with you everywhere.

Setting up sacred space can involve a simple process of saying a prayer and setting intentions just before your ceremonial or healing work; when the work is complete, the sacred space is then closed. Creating a sacred space can also involve setting up a sacred altar that serves as a physical place to say prayers, anchor and amplify intentions, create beauty, bring protection, and raise the vibration of the space. Altars can be left in a place in the home or can be used for a specific ceremony and taken down when the ceremony is finished.

Building an Altar for your Sacred Space

Setting up a sacred altar is an ancient practice of creating sacred space in your home or wherever you are. An altar is a gateway to the divine that brings beauty and spiritual energy, it can be used for ceremony, ritual, and healing. There is no right or wrong way to set up your sacred altar, as long as you are operating from the heart and with your highest good in mind.

The items required to set up your sacred altar include:

  • An altar cloth: preferably cotton or silk
  • Crystals such as black tourmaline, lapis lazuli, clear quartz, amethyst, etc.
  • Sacred items: photos, animal figures, deities, etc.
  • Offerings: fruits, sweets, or flowers
  • Sacred herbs: white sage, palo santo, or sweetgrass
  • Candles: beeswax or another natural burning wax
  • Essential oils: protection spray, vetiver, etc.
  • Feathers and an abalone shell
  • Matches or a lighter

In my book, The Ultimate Guide to Shamanism” I provide you simple steps for setting up your sacred altar. I also share on how to call in the four directions into your sacred space and examples of what you can place on your altar to honour the four sacred directions. You can purchase a copy of the book here.

I have also made it really simple for you to begin your Altar journey with our new Altar kits! We have created 3 different sacred altar kits for you to explore. You can find more information about them here.

With Love and Reverence,


This blog was written with excerpts from my book “The Ultimate Guide to Shamanism” and can be purchased here.

Published by Quarto Knows⁠ in July 20, 2021⁠

Illustrations: Roberta Orpwoods of Soulbirdart 

Photos by Nikolina of Maiden Mother Photoart