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How to make a shrine

Updated February 21, 2017

Shrines are monuments created to worship a god, remember a lost loved one or honour an inspiring person. Though traditional shrines are religious in nature, some have made shrines in honour of a favourite celebrity or deceased pet. With a bit of free space and a few personal items, anyone can build a shrine to remember and express their appreciation for someone or something they admire.

Set aside a special place for your shrine, such as an empty closet, cabinet or shelf. If you'd like to carry the shrine around with you, consider placing your shrine in a box or tin. If something special happened in a certain spot and you wish to remember the moment, try to build a shrine in that spot.

Say prayers, make offerings or perform an anointing ritual to establish the shrine as a holy place. Skip this step if you are building a secular shrine, or if you don't perform these rituals in your spiritual practices.

Paint the shrine a colour that is meaningful to your faith or the subject of the shrine.

Place items in the shrine that inspire you or remind you of the shrine's subject. Buddhist shrines, for example, include a Buddha image or statue. Catholic shrines may include a Cross and Rosary. Shrines for a loved one may include funeral flowers, photos and personal items. A shrine for a writer or poet you admire can include a book of his work.

Place worship and meditation aids in your shrine, if desired. These can include candles, incense, prayer beads and any other items important to your spiritual rituals.

Arrange the items in your shrine respectfully so that more significant items are higher or more prominent than less significant items.

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About the Author

Christina Sloane has been writing since 1992. Her work has appeared in several national literary magazines.