Like most folks, I don't have room enough in my apartment for a whole temple room. I have a roommate living in my library, and the library takes up a lot of space all by itself -- there are books in every room of my house. But I do have a walk-in closet in my bedroom. So, soon I'll be working on rearranging my storage so that I can empty out that closet and create my own incubation chamber for work on some of the rituals from the Gaelic tradition that require darkness and isolation or intensive internalization. These rituals include the stone on the belly poetic incubation described by Martin Martin from the Isle of Skye in the late 17th century, the ritual of tarbhfeis (tarv-faysh or bull-feast), and the lengthy imbas forosnai (im-bus for-oss-nuh) ritual that could take as long as three or nine days.
My most intensive ritual experiences so far have been backpacking trips out to the coast in Washington and California. In both cases, I spent three nights camping and doing ritual during most of that time, even when "ritual" consisted of beachwalking while meditating and watching for potential information regarding my process. This will take my work in a different direction, but one that's necessary as a part of the practice of filidecht. Part of the work involves sensory deprivation of a sort -- isolation and darkness are definite steps in that direction. Entheogens may also have been a part of the practice of filidecht at some point in the past. The visionary experiences described certainly often read like entheogenic experiences.
If I want to be able to add fasting to the ritual preparation, I'm also going to have to look at the idea of giving up tea for a while, as caffeine withdrawal can cause bad headaches or even migraines, and going into a fast for spiritual purposes while dealing with migraines from withdrawal is just not a good way to get your visions on. Talking to a doc would probably be a good idea as well, due to my health constraints. I have fibromyalgia, migraines, PTSD and a variety of other issues including clinical depression that require a certain amount of monitoring, so hardcore fasting is something that I would absolutely have to work up to carefully rather than just jumping in and not eating for a couple of days.
In doing this kind of practical work, there will always be considerations of time, isolation, preparation, space, and ritual creation. We have rough accounts of these rituals, but the formats and ritual words are not preserved. In some cases we're told that four druids accompany the one seeking a vision, chanting "truth spells" the entire time the seeker is in trance. Human assistance may not always be available, so allowances have to be made for the "sound track" of the ritual. Precautions need to be taken in the case of both fasting and entheogen use as a solitary worker. Distractions have to somehow be kept to a minimum.
Later this week I should be posting some photos of the closet before and after clearing it out. After that, as I work on creating sacred space within it, there will probably be a few pictures of how the chamber develops. Not having a dedicated temple room may mean that I'll need to divide the closet into two "rooms" with a curtain so that there is a preparatory and post-incubation space as well as the space for the actual incubation itself. An altar, a comfortable cushion to lie on, warm blankies and other considerations need to be looked at.
As a practical thing, I also have to accept that there will be some failures and false starts on this. In the hope of encouraging and informing others, I'll be recording the flops as well as the successes. I hope that my work will inspire others to do some research and experimentation with Gaelic incubatory ritual work. The more of us who are working on it, the more likely we'll be to develop successful technologies for it within the CR community. In my opinion, more successful ritual forms equals a more diverse and stronger community.
Just as Celtic cultures have never been monolithic, I think that CR should be diverse in its practices so long as it stays true to the Celtic cultures that inspire it, even if there is syncretism and adaptation of technologies from outside the cultures. Nothing in this world has developed in utter isolation, and if one of CR's questions is "what would Celtic polytheism look like if Christianity hadn't come along", then one of those answers is very likely to be "very diverse."