The icon of the house, how to choose and where to put it
Earlier almost every house had its own iconostasis — the place where the icons where the saints and to the Lord prayers were offered. Now, many Christian traditions are forgotten, with the result that some families do not know how to contain and position the icons in the house.
For icons previously stood out the most honorable place called the red or the Holy corner, a Shrine, a Shrine (Kyoto). Such a place is richly decorated, kept impeccably clean, it served as a kind of home altar, where family members can pray and ask the Lord's blessing. In our days, this practice almost never occurs, and, increasingly, in the homes of believers there are just one or more individual icons arranged as and where necessary.
Of course, such an attitude toward icons is not encouraged, because it is the Holy image with which to refer to, respectively. Therefore, it is important to know at least the basic principles of selecting and placing icons in the house in advance so as not to desecrate them.
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How to choose the icons for home?
Selection of icons for each family and even for its individual members is always individual: every believer has the right to decide, listening to the voice of your heart, the exploits of any of his saints is most encouraging, to how he will address prayer. However, one General rule still is in Orthodox families must be home icon of the Savior and mother of God.
The icon of the Savior for home prayers usually chosen with the image of God Almighty (Pantocrator) or of Edessa. The icon of the virgin in the house, in turn, selected primarily among the iconographic types, such as "Tenderness" ("Eleousa") and "guide to" ("Protectress").
Young families as the two main icons in the home often used the wedding couple. It is permissible, but it is important to make sure such a pair was larger than the other icons in the house and it coincided with them on writing style.
Speaking about other icons for home, in addition to the images of Christ and the virgin, their choice, as mentioned above, free. But most often the believers gain in the house of icons of the heavenly patrons of members of the family (icons), the icons are very revered in the family of saints, icons of the holidays. This also quite often in the homes of believers to meet the image of St. Nicholas, the Holy great-Martyr George — the most revered and beloved by the people of the saints.
How to hang icons in the house?
In accordance with Orthodox Christian tradition, icons of the house is not always hung on the wall, and were placed on special shelves. However, in modern conditions, the placement of icons on the walls is considered acceptable, so often believers are wondering where exactly you can hang icons.
In fact, the strict rules of the order of the icons in the home as in the temple, no. But still need to adhere to several important principles in choosing the location for each icon. So, no, the icon can not be bigger and located higher than the icon of the Savior, with the exception of the icon of the Holy Trinity. Next to the image of Christ is usually the icon of the virgin, and the alignment of these icons should be such that the icon of the Savior in relation to the facing face of the believer was right and the icon of the Theotokos on the left.
Below the icons of Christ and the blessed virgin, or on the side of they can place icons of family members, as well as other icons. Usually, the principle of hierarchy: for example, icons of the saints are not placed above the main icons (the Holy Trinity, Savior, virgin) and above the icons of the apostles.
In Orthodox churches the altars facing the East, and in the home iconostasis Holy icons are usually also on the East side. But if the layout of the rooms in the house to place icons does not work — nothing terrible, as the icons be placed in any accessible location. It is important to remember that before the icons should be enough space for the accomplishment of the prayer by several members of a family, part of the room where the icons should not be littered.
The choice of rooms for placing icons in the home can be almost anything: icons can be placed in the living room, the nursery, the kitchen can also be the location of the icons above the entrance to the house. And of course you can hang on the wall or put on the shelf icons in the bedroom, including marital: marital intimacy in marriage is not a sin, so nothing wrong with the icons placed above the matrimonial bed, is not and can not be.
In conclusion, it is worth noting that the icons in the home should always be separate, and it is inappropriate to put them on the shelves with books, photos of family members, toys, Souvenirs. It also prohibits the placement of icons surrounded by paintings, even of a religious nature, and surrounded by photos of the righteous or priests. published