With Pantheacon coming up really soon I got to thinking about one of the most important parts of an ADF Altar or ritual: The Fire. Its a central part of most many if not all Indo-European cultures and is the only hallows that are required in COOR.(Core Order Of Ritual)
The one thing all of them share is a reverence for fire.
The hotel that hosts Pantheacon does not allow for the actual fire to be lit so we have to be creative in finding ways to create this hallows in our ritual. It’s always interesting to see what happens.
Some ideas were better than others.
What this also brings to mind is how creative some ADF Members have to be in their living situations concerning this same element. I have never lived in a place where a fire was prohibited but I can imagine how this could put a crimp in your ritual style. Unless your creative or just have an active imagination.
Its also good to mention that many of us don’t see that hearth fire in the same way that our ancestors did. Not many of us have the luxury/ability to have a true fire in the center of our homes for warmth and cooking. For many of us, the hearth of the home is the gas or electric stove and the central heating combined.
A true basic tenant of ADF is to work with what you have, you don’t need to go out and buy anything fancy. Just be creative with what tools are already at your disposal.
Put an altar to Hestia on your stove, saying a prayer to her whenever you turn on the heat.
If you cannot have a fire on your altar but can draw or paint, create something and put it on your altar.
The lack of needed Physical tools kind of what drew me to ADF.
You could do ritual with a candle, bowl, and stick if that’s all you had available.
What I am trying to get to here is that its okay to be creative, as long as your doing it in the right spirit.
If you have the tools available use them, but if you don’t the Kindred won’t smite you. They will let you know if you can do better though, don’t be stingy just for the sake of laziness or false humility.
The Ancestors, in particular, were once human, maybe some of the Gods too, and will understand the difference and react reasonably. They might even send gifts your way to help with that.
The only deity that might be appalled at not getting the best would be Zeus, maybe, but he’s an asshole anyway so I wouldn’t take it too seriously.