How Do Altars Work?

Do Altars Really Work Or Is This All Just A Bunch Of Superstition?

An altar is used to give form to our intentions. One way to do this is to use altar elements that represent, or symbolize, what we’d like to manifest or change in our life. Altar elements are objects placed on an altar, such as gemstones or a candle.

For example, a candle flame might be associated in our mind with inner light or our soul passion. We might place a candle on our altar as a way to align with our inner passion. Since everything is virtually made of energy, including our thoughts and intentions, we can connect our intentions with physical objects on an energetic level through our mind’s thoughts.

How Do Altars Work

The chemical properties of a candle flame come from the same energy source as our conscious awareness – and everything else. When we link our awareness together with energy frequencies of say, the chemical building blocks of fire, we can channel that energy stream from fire toward a new life direction or event.

If a candle flame symbolizes our soul passion, we create a more powerful force with which to manifest that desire. This is because our intention is not only fueled by the will and determination of our thoughts but also the energy of our emotions.

We can also project our energy from our consciousness onto a flame of fire, turning that candle flame into an extra force of help, or focus, in our physical world. While an object contains energy properties of its own, we can streamline that energy into specific manifestations by using our focused intent.

So is it like Voodoo?

Voodoo is a religion that originated in Africa and may or may not involve the use of altars. Some people who practice Voodoo might set up an ancestral altar or shrine but that goes beyond the scope of what we’re talking about here.

Altars are not a superstitious, all-powerful god or supernatural force, although some people might view them this way. They work in a very natural way to help us clarify our intent and then manifest it with our own energy. We are the ones who create an effect and an altar is only a helper to that extent. We are in full control of our altar.

So it isn’t magic?

Using an altar is practical magic but magic isn’t a supernatural occurrence. It’s simply the way things work in our physical world. If we desire something, we make a certain series of decisions in order to obtain it. All of that thought energy begins to take form in the material reality as we focus on our desire. The artifacts on an altar are simply the beginning of or the representations of our intentions taking physical form.

By putting our intentions out into the world through an altar, we tell the universe that we are ready for that event to occur. We determine that this is what we want at this time in our life. We are ready to do what it takes to obtain this specific desire; and we are open to whichever way the universe will manifest it.

An altar is not a way to force something to happen in our life, but to align with what our true self already wants – thereby opening the pathway for it to occur. Otherwise, we’re only working against ourself.

How Do Altars Work
{Image found at Creative Commons}

So how does a candle flame help me attract more money into my life?

Let’s say you have a desire to increase your income. Your desire is an energy force that is probably already expressing itself in certain ways, such as working longer hours to earn more money.

You can use an altar, or a space in your life, to channel your passion more directly toward an increased income by focusing your awareness on it. So an altar doesn’t necessarily “attract” more money but it’s a means for you to focus your energies and the energies of the altar elements, toward bringing more money into your life.

How does this happen exactly? What do I do?

There are a myriad of ways to use an altar to manifest an intention. One way is to think of a candle flame as your soul desire to increase your finances. The candle then becomes the physical representation of what you want. You’ve then made the first step toward transforming an abstract desire into the material realm. Even though at this point it’s only a candle, it still proves to the universe, and yourself, that you’re serious about this intention.

As you watch the candle burn with your intention in mind, you might come up with new ideas for making more money. You might realize how you’ve been sabotaging yourself from this goal. Or the candle might help you feel relaxed as you release your worries surrounding your desire to the universe. You might trust (with focused awareness) that new opportunities will arise, and you’ll be ready to jump on them when they do. There are many ways that this can play out, but this should give you an idea of how an altar works.

How will I know it worked? Will I feel goosebumps or anything?

Using an altar works on an energetic level so we may not feel or sense anything physically or emotionally unless we’re intuitively open and connected to that dimension. I feel goosebumps often when I do energy work, and many other sensations. But I don’t rely on them.

If we don’t sense an energy flow, it doesn’t mean something is not occurring. An infinite number of energy processes are occurring within and around us all the time apart from our awareness. The effects of having an altar are very powerful but are also so subtle, it’s easy to miss them or think that they were due to some chance coincidence.

The way we experience an altar’s effects is through an occurrence or change in our thinking, our emotions, and/or our life circumstances. For example, new insight or a new stream of inspiration might come to us the next day. Or we might feel more confident than usual. We might be able to think more clearly, the path forward might make more sense now, or we might sleep more soundly.

Since we are continuously manifesting our thoughts and intentions, this process often goes unnoticed by our awareness. Setting deliberate intentions with an altar means that we can start manifesting our intentions with awareness. We can spend time thinking and focusing on what we truly want, rather than being controlled by our unconscious mental programming.

So you might not notice the results of using an altar to focus your intentions. But as long as you’re channeling your thoughts toward a certain direction, you can trust those thoughts to eventually take form.

Again, we’re continuously manifesting something. The question is, what are we manifesting? An altar can help us focus our thoughts in order to change our life direction or create something entirely original. We possess far more power than we realize. It’s just a matter of using that power.


I’m here to guide people to their truest self, and contribute to a world of humans doing what they love.