Monday, April 26, 2010

Myths, Folklore, and Symbolism: Altar

Altar "It is a raised place (from Latin altus, high) within a cult precinct that serves the purpose of sacrifice and other sacred acts in almost all religions. The raised location represents the elevation of of the sacrificial gifts to the gods or to God. Occasionally the altar is considered the spiritual center of the world. In Christianity it represents the holy table of the Last Supper with Chris or the bod of Christ itself (the white altar cloth thus symbolizes the shroud). Since the fourth century the altar has been understood to be a place of protection and refuge; even the grossest criminals may not be arrested in the church, and above all not at the altar." (Herder)

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