stacked offering bowls

Offering Bowls

making offerings

Water offerings are made daily. They can be set up in the morning and taken down in the evening, or set up at the beginning of your daily practice session and taken down afterwards. When offerings are made using rice they may be left up for a longer period of time. The rice may be coloured with saffron before being placed in the offering bowls. Once the bowls are filled with rice objects may be placed on top of the rice in particular bowls to represent some of the offerings: such as a flower, a stick of incense, a tiny bottle of perfume, an item of food such as a sweet, dried food or a nut, and a shell may be added for the sound offering. Nowadays the light offering can often be seen represented by an electric candle bulb where offerings remain in place for an extended period of time. After the shrine bowls are emptied, they are dried and stacked upside down. The offering water may be used to water plants, but should not be simply poured down the drain.