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How to Start a Travel Shrine

by Christine DeSadeleer Apr 13, 2009
Protection, meaning, power, healing, and pictures are all part of a transportable temple.

According to life coach Cynthia Morris, Lewis and Clark had one. So did Charles Lindbergh, and Amelia Earhart (though not on her last trip, obviously).

Travel shrines are portable spirit-in-a-box.

Packed properly, they are sturdy and lightweight, which makes them easy to slip into your bag. When you arrive at your destination, set your travel shrine up in your room.

The great thing about these shrines is that they can pertain to any religion or spiritual affiliation, meaningful event/s, or be a way to keep that special someone close to your heart.

If you are feeling wild and crazy, they can be all three.

While you should feel free to include anything you wish in your mobile shrine-o-rama, here’s a quick list of items in case you need a little inspiration:

1. The Box

This can vary in size, shape, and outward appearance. It can be a shoe box you got after finally breaking down and buying a new pair of kicks in Spain, or it can be the box-which-holds-the-Christmas-cards that you’ll never get around to writing and/or sending. Decorate as you like with pictures of the Vatican or Duran Duran, or stick a picture of the Earth smack dab in the middle, and you are good to go.

2. Protection

Find a piece that you identify with that symbolizes protection. Whether a St. Christopher medal if you are Catholic, Foo Dogs if you are into Feng Shui, or a pentacle necklace if you are Wiccan, carrying around something that you believe will keep you safe is a powerful signal to the travel gods.

3. Meaning

I try my best to pick up something from every place I visit. And no, not slow globes or little bells stamped with the city’s name (not that there is anything wrong with that). Usually, it is something that catches my eye when hiking through a forest, such as a large nut that has fallen from a tree.

4. Power

While traveling, you are bound to happen upon some goodies on the street or in dumpsters, like my favorite-ever find, a Supergirl action figure that can punch away my fear or irritation by simply pushing the lever on her back (awesome).

5. Healing

Of course, I do purchase pieces from stores such as native stones, local healing herbs and spices, and you usually can’t persuade me not to hand over my money for some amazing crystal or spiritual statue/picture/painting, etc.

6. Pictures

Gotta have ’em, whether of your beloved dog, Rover, to remind you of the steady ground beneath your feet when you ran with him in the park, or of crazy Aunt Mildred to remind you no matter who you encounter on the road, you have a more insane person genetically-linked to you.

Pictures make us laugh, cry, and feel connected. Do yourself a favor and pick out one for every possible mood.

Yes, I tend toward a certain end of the spiritual spectrum, but that’s not to imply that you need these particular materials for your own travel shrine. Take along whatever you feel is important to you, will keep you grounded when faced with adversity, but at the same time, you can let go of if lost, or well, you know…stolen.

What are other items you would want to include in your travel shrine? Share your thoughts below.

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