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How to Set Up a Sacred Space for Sikh Scriptures - Part 1


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Assemble a Portable Altar for Guru Granth
A Sacred Space for Sikh Scriptures

A Portable Altar Set Up

Photo © [S Khalsa]

Portable Altar for Guru Granth

The sacred Sikh scripture is known as Guru Granth Sahib. Sikhs revere the texts of the scripture as a living entity. Anyone wishing to read Guru Granth follows a particular protocol which includes providing an altar, or resting place for the Guru. The altar is called a manj meaning bed. The altar may be a either a cot, or cushioned platform, with a canopy. A portable altar may be assembled and used for an occasional program, or left in place permanently as long as a separate room, or screened area, is available.

Construction and Assembly Instructions for Altar and Canopy Frame

Difficulty Level - Easy to moderate

Time to Complete:

  • 2-4 hrs for construction project.
  • 15 minutes for assembly of completed altar.

Materials needed for construction:

  • 2’ x 3’ x 3/4” Cabinet Grade Plywood.
  • 20’ of 2”x1/2” plain or decorative Wood Trim.
  • 4 Legs, 10” – 14” in length, with brackets & screws (12).
  • 4 stair rail Spindles, or 3/4” - 1” Dowels, 3’ - 4’ in length.
  • 4 decorative door casing trim pieces, 3" - 4" Squares.
  • 44 - 56 fine or decorative brass Wood Screws, or Finish Nails, 1” - 2” in length.
  • Wood Putty or Caulk
  • Sand Paper (fine - medium grade)
  • Spray Paint and (optional) Primer
  • Carpenters Glue

Hand or power tools recommended for construction:

  • Saw
  • Screwdriver
  • Paint Brush
  • Tape Measure
  • Drill and Bits
  • Tack Hammer and Nail Set

Furnish Portable Altar With Cushions, Coverlets and Canopy Illustrated Instructions

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