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Some traditions require an altar. If you belong to one of these, then yes, you do. If you are asking if you need an altar to perform magick, no, you don't. It is helpful to have an altar to put tools, incense, etc. on, but you don't need any tools to perform magick and if you do use tools, you can just as easily place them on a kitchen table or a convenient stump in lieu of an altar.
I personally have several altars dedicated to Gods in my house, as I am a polytheist (though it may be more appropriate to call some of them "shrines") but these are specifically for honoring the Gods which I consider to be a separate thing to practicing magick, though many combine the two. When I practice magick, I am generally at the kitchen table, in my bed or bathtub or at the firepit and there's no place to put an altar in most of these locations.
Thank you for this!
I didn't post the question but I found it especially helpful.
I am very new to this. I discovered a few gifts and since I had an interest in these kind of things I thought to use my gifts for a greater good.
I have no space for an altar where I leave and was wondering if I need it to perform my skills. Some useful spells I want to perform require I leave grids/candles/objects on the altar for a period of time and was wondering if leaving them next to my television would be ok.
When I have more space, I would like to put together an altar to have that corner of my house to perform my spells (a comfortable space etc), but I am confused as my beliefs are a bit complicated and was wondering if it can be dedicated to the Universe if I believe that is God? It's a bit vague (just like my beliefs, which is why I consider myself Christian/Agnostic).
What are your thoughts on this?
Thank you again!
You altar is your work space and you can dedicate it to whatever you like, or just dedicate it to your work, if you like. If I was dedicating the altar to The All, or the Universe, I'd just put things on it that made me feel awestruck. Like pictures of the grand canyon or opals (I don't know what it is about opals) or things that represent very important moments of my life, or things that I stumbled upon and took as "gifts" from the Universe. I have a deer skull that fits that description. But you do you, because that's what it's all about.