This is my Ancestor Shrine. In my tradition, it is said that one should have an ancestor shrine before having an altar that is livicated to one of the Orishas or the spirit that houses your Caldero/Nganga. My Ancestor Shrine holds my Palo/Stick I’m the corner. It has been fed a guinea fowl. This stick is used to call in the spirits. My great grandmother is depicted her on my shrine, however I have many ancestors that this shrine feeds. There are offerings of meat and butter as the ancestors are traditionally fed meat/blood, butter, and honey. You can feed them whatever resonates with your beliefs and culture. I often place sweets on my altar for my grandmother, she was a diabetic but loved sweets! All of my spiritual tools are housed her as well so that they can be blessed and fed/energized by the Ancients. It is tradition to place one cup of water for clarity, one cup of honey for sweetening, one cup of alcohol to appease, and one cup of coffee to awaken. The flowers are an offering of earth and beauty. There is also incense on my altar because smoke is given as a cleansing offering. It’s hard to see but I have an Ethiopian Coptic Cross on my altar as it is also tradition to have cross, however it is typically placed in a glass of water. I have intuitively shaped my practice to what my guides and ancestors have shown me. On the ground I have placed a crystal grid on Metatron’s cube. This is for protection, love and heightened spiritual awareness. You will see spring water in a bottle to the left on the floor. This water was taken from an ancient sight in Oregon. The water from that spring fed the indigenous people of this land as well as the settlers. I use this water to make aura sprays and room clearing sprays. It is charged on my altar, infused with reiki. And connected to the earth and moon before the aura spray is created. Lastly, my crystals are housed here. They are cleansed before and after use them placed back on the Altar. My Altar is placed on the west wall of my home because this is the direction that best flows with my energy. It is placed in the hallway of the second floor in my home. Ancestors don’t like to be alone, they want to gather with you and be seen and felt often. It is wise to place your Altar In the living room of your home or another high traffic area. The Ancestors are part of the family and home just as much as you are.
Author: Rasia of Silfren Circle
Animal/blood sacrifice has been a controversial subject in regards to Ifa, Voodoo, Santeria, Palo Kimbesa, and Candomble to name a few. The necessity of animal sacrifice is rooted in the knowing that even the Spirits, Orishas, deities, and the dead have to feast... if they don’t eat, they will feed on us. This is why food offerings are left at holy temples, on altars, and in some cultures, at grave sites. When a sacrifice is made, it is done so as a way to strengthen one’s connection with their deity, much in the same way as a family eats together to strengthen family bonds and maintain familial rituals to hand down from generation to generation.
Often times the blood is given to the Orisha, and the flesh is prepared as a feast for all members of the house to partake in. Other parts of the animal are used to fashion spiritual tools out of such as fans, rattles, or talismans. In other cases, the animal is a vessel for which a transmutation of energy occurs. Its energy is transmuted from this life to the next. If you believe in past lives, or the idea of energy, then it follows that nothing every truly dies, it simply changes form. When a sacrifice is made due to death, sickness, or healing, the animal is not eaten because it has absorbed the sickness, or death.
The new testament deters from animal sacrifice through Jesus being the ultimate sacrifice, but many believe that this is untrue, that it was written into the bible this way to deter followers from practicing animal sacrifice because “they” know how powerful it is. Whatever your beliefs around this, if you are a meat eater, you should be connected to your food. Muslims have laws about how their meat should be prepared, this is called Halal. Those of the Jewish faith have practices, kosher laws, in regards to the cooking and preparing of their food. Native Americans thanked their kill for giving them life.
My point is that all major religions have practices around their food and most have altars where some, sometimes all of that food is placed. Voodoo, Ifa, Santeria, Palo, and Candomble are no different. We are connected to and aware of the exchange of energy that the animal offers us, we give thanks for it, we provide for our ancestors with honor and veneration and we utilize all parts of the animal. It is said that the animal who’s honor it is to be utilized in ritual, comes back in the next life with a higher standing and good karma.
Author: Rasia of Silfren Circle
On December 6th, the moon and sun meet in the sign of Sagittarius. Jupiter is also in its home sign of Sagittarius which infuses this new moon with extra umph. You are being asked to look at the bigger picture, a higher perspective..to explore, learn and seek. What have you learned and where can you stretch yourself just a bit more in an effort to be in greater alignment with your purpose? This is a time of clarity... clarity on your place in the world and how/where you’re ready to take up space. This is a great time to look at your belief systems, opinions, what you think is wrong or right, just and unjust and where or with whom you place your trust and faith. This will help you focus in on where you are ready to take the next step... where you can own more of who you are through an expanded sense of self awareness. This is where the focus for your new moon wishes should be placed. Sagittarius helps you to look at the wisdom you’ve gathered up until this point through your experiences. While there is always more to learn, it is good to honor and recognize just how far you’ve come. Sagittarius can also bring expanse in other ways such as over-spending, over-eating and over-drinking. This is an area to be aware of.
Because of a square(a challenge) to this new moon from Mars and Neptune, there is an opportunity to find common ground within soulful and emotional situations that you have been working through for some time so that you can come to a resolution for better or worse. This is making way for the new year so as not to leave these things lingering in the body. Tune into where you need to expand and what you need to move through and away from for good. A grand water trine is taking place. This is supportive of being loving, gentle , and compassionate with yourself..honoring what your heart needs and exalting the Divine Feminine within. This is being supported by Venus sextiling Saturn. Lastly, Mercury is going direct, any needed bits of information will slowly begin to present themselves as the month progresses making your vision for the future that much clearer. Overall this is a high vibrational time that can be used to rewrite your story and plan ahead as long as you are willing to travel light.
Jupiter is an expansive planet. It signifies good luck and good fortune. It is a Supreme Benefic. Numerically, Jupiter is ruled by the number 3. The number 3 is considered the Guru; the bringer of change. This number holds the significance of merging the human and the divine.
The spread I have created for this New Moon is one of progression. It will allow you to move with the expansive energy of Jupiter while also allowing you to dream (Neptune), blending the two so as to focus in on grounded action (Mars), through zeroing in on your purpose. Enjoy! and please share what comes up for you via Instagram, I’d love to see your spread!
Author: Rasia of Silfren Circle
Ancestor Worship in one form or another, has been a way of life since the beginning of time. We can see this through myths, storytelling, death and birth rituals, prayer and many other forms of ceremony. If we think of our bodies as the vessel through which our souls move, and our souls as infinite energy, then we can see why ancestor work is necessary. If energy is infinite, then it is transmutable, meaning it shifts and transforms but never dies. But sometimes energy can become stuck, or stagnant and needs support in moving through its passage. This is the infinite wisdom behind Ancestor Work and the reason why the ancients utilized this practice. They knew that crying, whaling, mourning, ritual, sacrifice, song, and offerings were all forms of worship that assisted in shifting the energy where and when it was needed.
The world of today is so far removed from this practice that we have become emotionally, and spiritually constipated because we don’t make space for rituals in our lives that assist in the transmutation of energy. As spiritual beings in this third dimensional experience, we carry within us the DNA of our ancestors, their pain, their heartbreak, their cycles, their stories. If you or a loved one has experienced some form of trauma, part of integrating this trauma is Ancestor Work.
When you look back at your lineage, the cycle of trauma is guaranteed to reveal itself. You are likely not the first to feel the expressions of it. If this is true for you, it is because that energetic expression hasn’t been integrated. Working with your ancestors allows for knowledge to be unlocked, passed down, and deeper heeling to occur. Through storytelling, grieving, laughing, crying, and offerings, we honor the dead in all of their glory because without them, we would not be here. I encourage you to connect with your lineage through whatever channel feels right to you, research, intuition, your guru, or simply by connecting with family and asking questions. Where did your people originate from? What lands did they travel on? What did they eat? What were some of their traditions? How did others experience them? Knowing the people and traditions you come from allows for a greater sense of self, a firmer foundation on which to stand, and it opens the door to focused and purposeful healing. Ancestor Work offers healing of both the past and the present. Know yourself, know where you come from then tell your story.
A quick and easy way to begin this work is to set up an ancestor altar. Place photos of Ancestors that resonate with you on a table with a white cloth on it. Place a cup of water on the table, some flowers, and anything else that reminds you of where your people originated from. Offerings in the form of food, smoke, or just your voice through song, speech or prayer is always good. The spirits need to be fed! When you cook food be sure to place a portion on your Ancestor Altar before feeding yourself. Placing items on your altar that they enjoyed when they were in this realm is also nice as it shows that you are putting intentional thought into your offerings.
Author: Priestess Rasia Mykonos Pouncie of Silfren Circle
Rasia is a Priestess in the tradition of Palo Kimbesa. This is an ancient practice that has its roots in the Congo Basin. She has been a practitioner for 20 years. In addition to this, Rasia utilizes energy work, crystal healing, tarot, astrology, clairvoyance, and clairsentience in her practice. She provides services with her clients through her practice as a Licensed Intuitive Life Coach and hold a Bachelor in Psychology.