Travel! A sense of joy meets my heart as I hear the word Travel.
We as humans weave out a world through our imagination. Some of us make this dream a reality by physically traveling to spaces. Others do it through their minds. Literally speaking, travel is one of the most underrated tools that help us energize our mind and body. We as humans have nearly seven trillion nerve endings that require the thrill to pulsate and come alive. Hopefully, as you read this line, a visual of a thrilling trip flashes in your mind, sending the corners of your mouth to be lifted into one wholesome smile.
I crave for that smile to be lifted. Lifted with experiences that wake me up from the rut of every day! With time, I realize that travel has a powerful effect on energizing the soul. One can constantly return to these happy memories by savoring, remembering, and envisioning these memories within.
As I glance through the pictures of my travels, I crave to relive my memories. The sensory pleasure of holding a photograph from my sky diving adventure makes me dive into that moment again. The joy of wearing my favorite jewelry from the tribal terrains of South India transports me to that space of celebration, where I sat eating with them through contended smiles.
As I sit before my sacred altar, to retrospect, I cannot help but think of the similarities between sacred spaces and traveling. The smoke of my sacred Palo Santo blurs my mind with moments lived and now to be savored.
What makes my Altar a sacred space?
Altars define themselves through the Christian paradigm of sacred architecture, where bread was offered to God as a sign of reverence. It’s amazing how altars from religious spaces now find themselves in the homes of the common man as centers of energy. These sacred spaces work symbolically by amplifying our energy. This energy is reflected in objects that we consider special and these can be held physically. However, my altar does not consist of conventional sacred symbols alone. It is a metaphorical journey that I embark upon. I constantly create symbols that strike a chord with me.
How’s that? Let’s find out.
Precious crystals as powerful memorabilia
One cannot help but feel in tune with the powerful effect of Tiger’s Eye or the resurrecting powers of the Black obsidian crystal. One holds crystals in their hearts while meditating to obtain a sense of wholesomeness by believing in their properties. Holding a precious souvenir from your favorite travel could elicit a similar reaction of reverence towards a particular destination. Try holding a souvenir close to your heart, a sense of strength, a sense of gratitude would arise within.
Sage that heals your soul
Burning herbs through smudging is viewed and practiced with great reverence as healing energy. The cyclical smudging as a ritual is believed to be sacred especially at the start of something new. What really amplifies the energy is the visual and the smell of burning herbs. This can be similar to the burning of sacred wood in the Hindu traditions of yagnas. Fumes could also bring forth an emotion of a memorable meal in the years gone by. The fumes in a kitchen are symbolic of creating. The fumes of a yajna or burning herbs are also a promise to create. To heal the old and welcome the new.
Journals as sacred pages of travel
One is familiar with scriptures of religious Epics such as Bhagvat Gita or the Bible. The belief of these books lies in the words that resonate with us through the stages of our life. Similarly, a quote, a paper napkin/brochure of your favorite destination could hold the same power of transforming your mind as you revisit it. The power of savoring a memory by flipping through these pages could bring alive anecdotes of your personal journal. For what is sacred to you, needs no definition, and is up to yours to make.
Elements of nature as Sacred Objects
The belief that we are a product of nature could be linked to the Ayurvedic practice of the Doshas. For many millennia, men have been healed by the bountiful spaces of nature and the elements that embody it. The possession of a shell could bring back the visual memory of driving by the pacific ocean, embracing in its hues. The imprint of a herbivore in your bag pack could bring back that lovely trek in solitude. The sacred space of holding these in your altar would amplify the holiness of these experiences. We live through the elements of nature. This does not only ground us but also reminds us of our beginnings. Let the texture of that shell remind you of your true being.
It is believed that happiness does not consist in things by themselves, but in the relish, we have of them.
Next time you find yourself in your dream destination, engage in it completely. Take that photograph with a loved one with an open heart and a wholesome smile. Collect that paper napkin from your favorite restaurant, where a meal has truly touched your heart. Savor that experience by creating that sacred space within you. For that may find itself in your altar. Almost like a much-needed compass, guiding you when you have lost that precious zeal in your life.
Let that altar guide you back to life!