I thought I would take an opportunity to discuss designating a space in your home as a spiritual center. I do this for three reasons: First, I am still in the process of setting up my own home after my recent move (something that probably is to be ongoing until late July since it was an international escapade). Secondly, designating a Sacred Space in my home has been something that I have been doing since I was a child. Last but not least, my third reason is that I have discovered over the years that having this designated space has aided my well-being as long as it was consistently utilized.
My Sacred Spaces have been through as many incarnations as I have, we have evolved together through the years. I always instinctually carved out these little spots since childhood, long before I understood what they actually were. I admittedly kept these spaces secret during my formative years but as I matured, these spaces have become visible and sometimes over the top. They have been as small as a decorative box hidden lovingly in the back of a closet and as all encompassing as my entire house but as with all things I eventually found a balance.
What is the purpose of a Sacred Space? It is a place for you to connect to that Divine Aspect (however you view the Divine) on a personal level. It is a place for you to bring your hopes and fears, your dreams and give them to God/dess. It is a way for you to not only develop a personal relationship with the Divine but I found that it also helped me to define the Divine and my own Spiritual Self. This is your safe spot, a representational point of origin, the microcosm in the macrocosm of our spiritual existence. A tool for meditation and reflection.
Designating a Space…my first spaces were small and secretively squirreled away, mostly from my sister whom I shared a room with, but also because even at that young age I was painfully aware of the fact that my ideas of God and that of my parent’s were in conflict. My first space was a cigar box that I had decorated in a school art class that held things that were cherished and to me (at that time) representational of who I thought god was. It was filled with natural elements that I had collected: stones, shells, dried moss and flowers, bird feathers, etc.,. It, contents and all, ended up being my sister’s pet hamster’s coffin upon it’s untimely demise. I made sure the rest of my childhood spaces were not accessible.
These Spaces during adulthood have been as simple as a single shelf or as large as an entire house. I figured out that having the space be as large as an entire house was counterproductive. I much prefer for it to be a room and I am currently trying to find that room in my new location. Choosing a Space is a personal endeavor. Take into consideration your likes and dislikes and the comfort aspect, If you aren’t comfortable, or it isn’t aesthetically pleasing in your space you probably aren’t going to use it. My rule of thumb: Pay attention to the room you gravitate towards.
My previous space in Mumbai was a small bonus room in our flat. It had wonderful light and I liked the energy. I felt creative and centered in that room and it was the one place in that entire flat that I always seemed to end up in and so I set up camp. It became my sacred space. I painted, knitted, blogged and read in that room. I sought comfort in that room when I was sad, calm when I was angry, solace when I was feeling life was chaotic.
Decorating Your Space: Again, this comes down to personal preference, and it will undergo several changes. My spaces have run the gamut; some have been sparsely decorated and others were as overstuffed as a Victorian parlor. You will find that some elements will stay the same; for me that has always been natural elements and light. Other elements will have a revolving door feel and be more reflective of your karmic patterns. Always allow this space to have a fluid nature, it will at times feel like an extension of yourself and as you evolve it too will undergo changes…let them happen naturally.
Photo: Kiva. Chaco Canyon, New Mexico; Photo taken by Pamela with a Nikon 5300.