Making Sacred Space Sacred

Author: Phoenix Forestsong

Have you ever been in your sacred space, just starting to raise your energy, and felt that maybe this space wasn’t really sacred enough, or maybe not at all? It’s happened to me, I’m sure it’s happened to you, but here are some thoughts on the matter to help put away the fear and uncertainty of that aspect of your workings. Let’s begin with two examples.

It is twilight; the sun has disappeared below his horizon, leaving burning golden fire in the purpling evening sky. The glittering diamond light of the night sky is just beginning to make itself known, and the Goddess, her silvery countenance shining proudly down upon her people, rides high and full in the sky. The faint smell of jasmine fills the air, as the twitter and chirp of evening birds can be heard for miles around. A dog howls in the distance, though the natural world is animated this beautiful twilight evening, the mere fact that the sound carries declares just how quiet the world is right now.

You find yourself in an old forgotten garden. Wildflowers bloom in the old natural planters, blue and gold and red and purple petals greet you, dripping with evening moisture. A well-worn stone altar faces to the north, while dark green ivy creeps along the ground and up and around the large Oak that marks the boundaries of this great secret glade. Humming birds dance their spiral rhythm while the babble of a small brook can be heard to the west. To the south, a small campfire burns off the chill that threatens from the coming night. In the center of it all stands you, the Witch, at the precise heart of this most sacred of spaces, a space most pleasing to the Gods.

Or…

It is after midnight, the sun is closer now to its rising than that of its setting, the night sky is dark, heavy clouds can be seen in the shadows of the sky, delivering rain upon the earth below. The full moon, hidden, is a pale silver ball of light, while it remains obscured, the light and love of the Goddess still shines down upon the Earth. The sizzle and thump of rain drops upon glass fills the quiet room. The wind, a howling gale, rushes and whistles in through cracks in the poorly fitting window frames. The smell of fresh rain and thunderstorm greet your nose as sit relaxing, enjoying nature’s display of power and fertility.

You sit in a well-worn computer chair, the smell of faux-leather long gone from the chair. In front of you is a flat-panel computer monitor, a well-used keyboard, and a trusty mouse sitting upon a pressed wood, cherry finished desk. The soothing and relaxing sound of Nick Drake plays through black plastic speakers.

To your right, a pink and purple painted psychedelic mushroom incense burner sits; the purifying smoke of Dragon’s Blood drifts outward and upward from under the blue-edged cap, spiraling and swirling in a faerie dance amongst the currents of the room.

To your left an electric powered water fountain churns and burbles fresh tap water over river stones, atop the fountain stands a candle, its flame dances as though alive, quivering and flicking with vigor and energy.

Directly in front rests one of the largest pieces of raw Citrine you’ve ever seen, the sunny energy that it projects fills you with confidence and warmth. In the center of it all sits you, the Witch, at the precise heart of this most sacred of spaces, a space most pleasing to the Gods.

Which Witch Are You?

I think that if any Witch were to have our preference, our personal sacred space would be the first option. The chance to worship amongst nature, to go between the worlds and commune with our Gods in such a pastoral and natural setting; I think every Witch would love the first. However, in the real world, our sacred space is much more like the second example.

In my home I have several sacred spaces from which I work. I have a full ritual space in my basement, mainly because I only have the room for it down there. I also have my desk, described above, with the homemade incense burner, the water fountain, and the candle, and the large citrine stone. Nick Drake is usually playing, or if not, the Grateful Dead, Dave Matthews Band, Phish, Pink Floyd, or Loreena McKennett, regardless, there is always music coming from this area at all times of the day, everyday. It is a sacred working space where I write and perform light magick.

Elsewhere in the house I have the music room, where much of my creativity and spiritual freedom are let loose, this too is a sacred space. Across the hall there is the bedroom, which is also sacred, for among other things, I do my all dream and most of my astral work in there. Also, in the Living Room, I have a small corner set up where I work on pottery and painting. I consider this to be a sacred space as well, as I do a good bit of meditating, thinking, and creating in this space. Most of my work in this area is also Craft related, or at least Craft inspired.

Perhaps the most sacred of all spaces that I keep is the shower. Many people would not consider their shower to be a sacred space, considering all the soap scum, mold, hair clogs, and other nasty, icky things that can, could, and probably do reside there whenever I’m not around. However, I consider this to be my most sacred space. I keep nothing magickal in the shower, I have no wiccan-made soaps, herbal shampoos, or magick lotions…nothing except for myself.

In my shower you will find a regular store brand bar of soap, a name-brand moisturizing bar of soap, a bottle of Pert, bottles of some swanky shampoo and conditioner set that my wife uses, and a washcloth. That’s all. So what makes this space so sacred to me and how can such a mundane utilitarian space be sacred? First of all, let us look at what sacred space truly is.

Sacred Space is a clean space, it is an area scrubbed free from negativity that is suitable to work magick from and to commune with the divine. Additionally this space will be saturated with your personal energy, so that it is your personal sacred space. It is a place for you, personally, to worship and work with the energies of the universe in absolute comfort for the most effective results. So how can a shower be sacred?

I begin my day with meditation, and usually that meditation is performed while showering, it works best for me, and it saves time. While the space itself may not be the most pleasing or comfortable, it is I that created this sacred space. It has been said before, by Silver Ravenwolf I believe, that the Witch is the Magick, well in the same vein, where the Witch is, is sacred. When standing before the universe, I am creating a bond, not only with my Gods and the natural world around me, but with the space that I reside in as well.

Making It Sacred

To begin to make a space sacred one must use a little energy and a lot of visualization. Begin by closing your eyes, grounding, centering, and start to feeling your surroundings. In your mind, see it flooded with a purifying white light, scouring away all traces of its previous energy. Raise your energy, slowly at first, and begin to think of the sacredness of the new place, the cleanness, and concentrate on how holy a place it should be.

Allow your energy to build, little by little, then, when you know the time is right, release that energy into the area; see it being absorbed into the materials of the space, see it infused with your power and the power of the Divine. Exert your will and make this space clean for your use.

But how can this now be a sacred space, must it not be cleansed, purified, and empowered just like a ritual tool? No. As stated above, the Witch is the Magick, and where the Witch is, is sacred. Ritual cleansing, consecrating, and empowering is a very important and required process, however, the space that you are using, the space where you will reside for a working, is inhabited by you.

Whether you realize it or not, anywhere the Witch is, is sacred. Wherever the Witch goes, he or she brings their sacredness with them, wherever the Witch stands, he or she stands on holy ground.

As a solitary practitioner of Wicca, I must be reminded sometimes that I am a Priest in my religion, aside from all the other roles that I will play during a ritual. I am, within the circle or without, a Priest of the Gods. Therefore, as a living, breathing, sentient individual, I contain within me Life, the spark of the Divine, the essence of that which is holy. Using this logic, it makes sense that I carry the spark with me at all times, that as long as I use this body in this incarnation I will always carry that Divine Spark within me. Therefore, as a living being, I bring that same Divine energy with me wherever I go, thus making every place that I go sacred, at least while I inhabit the location.

Does it sound a little too simple? Good. The truth of a thing can be determined upon how simple its explanation is. While the argument that got us there might not stand up in a court of law, the heart of the matter is that it is so simple it makes sense. Because we are living, and all life is divine, then we too are divine.

As a people we contain within us Life, Life that is aware of more than just our physical bodies and our meat instincts. Life beats strongly and flows deep from within to interact with the living world around us. It is this Life, this Divine energy that allows us to make a space sacred, just as we are sacred to the Gods.

Are there situations where a quickie cleansing won’t work? You bet! Especially in an area heavily trafficked by the public or in a place where something bad has happened. But for normal everyday, anywhere and any when cleansing, the quickie cleanse works just fine.

It was this line of reasoning that allowed be to become comfortable, not just with spell casting and ritual working, but with living in general. It used to be that I would go somewhere and feel like I really didn’t belong there. Now, knowing that I can make any space sacred, and that where I am, is sacred, I no longer worry about such issues.

If I’m spell casting and the question of “is it sacred enough?” enters my mind, I quickly cleanse the area again and get back to work. If I’m out and begin to feel uncomfortable, well, I just make my own personal area sacred, I make it mine, and that uncomfortable feeling fades.

So, what makes a sacred space, sacred? The answer, of course, is You!

Blessed Be,

-Phoenix Forestsong



Footnotes:
Silver Ravenwolf: To Ride a Silver Broomstick