There is very little known about the origin of candles. Although
it is often written that the first candles were developed by the
Ancient Egyptians who used rushlights, or torches, made by
soaking the pithy core of reeds in molten tallow, the rushlights
had no wick like a candle. It is the Romans who are credited
with developing the wick candle, using it to aid travelers at
dark, and lighting homes and places of worship at night.
Like the early Egyptians, the Romans
relied on tallow, gathered from cattle or sheep suet, as the
principal ingredient of candles. It was not until the Middle
Ages when beeswax, a substance secreted by honey bees to make
their honeycombs, was introduced. Beeswax candles were a marked
improvement over those made with tallow, for they did not
produce a smoky flame, or emit an acrid odor when burned.
Instead, beeswax candles burned pure and clean. However, they
were expensive, and, therefore, only the wealthy could afford
Further developments in candlemaking
occurred in 1850 with the production of paraffin wax made from
oil and coal shales. Today most candles are made from paraffin.
Candle-burning as a magickal system has
been around for at least 500 years. Candles are used in almost
all ceremonial rituals in church. One candle-burning ritual
everyone has participated in is the making of a wish and then
blowing out the candles on a birthday cake. Though traditional
lore says that it is bad luck to blow out a candle - they are
supposed to be snuffed out with fingers or a candle-snuffer.
Light has always been
symbolical of spiritual truth and the flame of the candle is
Various sources teach
that the candle represents the body - the wick is the soul and
the flame the spirit or divinity.
The candle can also be
the representation of the male organ with the light representing
the life force (semen).
Candles are often used
in meditation. To use a candle in meditation, one sits about
four to five feet from the flame. Stare at the flame for a few
minutes, they close the eyes and visualize the flame in the
mind. Watch what happens then.
A candle-burning ritual
can be as simple as making a wish and burning a single candle,
or it can be a complex spell that may involve dozes of candles
with oils, incense, herbs and the reciting of formulae. As a
general rule, the more effort you put into a ritual the more
successful it is likely to be.
However complex the
ritual, what is required for success is determination, a purpose
and a concentration of energy toward that purpose. The intent
and the prescribed ritual determine the color of the candle(s),
and sometimes the shape of the candle.
Candles should always be
anointed with oil before being used in a magick ritual. It is
believed that “dressing” the candles gives the ritual its power.
There is a particular way that a candle should be anointed:
Holding the candle in
your left hand with the top (the wick) pointing North, put a few
drops of oil on the candle. If the purpose of the ritual is to
attract something toward you, the top of the candle should be
pointing toward you. If the purpose of the ritual is to remove
something from you, the candle should be pointing away from you.
Be sure to rub the oil all over the entire candle.
Many people feel that
the material from which the candle is made is important.
The first choice, of
course, is natural beeswax, the material from which candles have
been made for nearly a thousand years. It is also an
ecologically sound material. Beeswax candle come in plain rolled
cylinders in all colors.
The second choice is a
tallow candle. The very first candles were made from tallow or
animal fat. The use of animal products is distasteful to some.
Further tallow candles are very hard to find and come in very
The least expensive
candles are the “regular” wax candles which are actually made
from a petroleum-based product. Because of their price, the are
by far the most commonly used. Because they are solid, they can
be easily carved or inscribed with words or symbols - all ways
of personalizing a candle and making it more effective in a
“Loading” or “fixing” a
candle consists of carving out a space in the base of the
candle, filling it with herbs and oils and sealing it. Some
candles are “fixed” during manufacture. A beeswax candle is
“loaded” by inserting the herbs and oils between the lay~s while
it is being rolled.
Another popular and
effective way of using a candle in ritual is to “drip” it with
color from other candles. The colors are selected according to
the purpose of the ritual. This produces a beautiful candle that
burns with some interesting results.
There are many systems
of color correlations for candles. The one in this book is based
on the oldest systems.
COLORS AND THEIR USES
WHITE - CANCER - MONDAY - MOON -
Use for protection, peace, sincerity, purity, spiritual
strength, peaceful home, consecration, to banish negative
energies, represents spiritual love in its highest forms.
YELLOW - GEMINI /VIRGO -
WEDNESDAY - MERCURY -
Use for intellectual pursuits, detailed work, memory, charm,
persuasion, cheer(ulness, adaptability, youth, luck, writing and
all mental endeavors.
ORANGE (GOLD) - LEO -
SUNDAY - SUN -
Use to obtain happiness, encouragement, confidence, stimulation,
attraction, warmth, gold, artistic endeavors.
RED - ARIES/SCORPIO -
TUESDAY - MARS/PLUTO -
Use for love, sexual attraction, energy, well-being, strength,
courage, new projects
PINK - PISCES - THURSDAY
- NEPTUNE -
Use for spiritual purposes, love, friendship, peace, dreams,
PURPLE - SAGITTARIOUS/AQUARIUS -
THURSDAY - JUPITER/URANUS -
Use for spiritual purposes,
protection, expansion, ambition, power, business, spirit guides,
BLUE - LIBRA - FRIDAY -
A secondary healing color, for understanding, friendship,
patience, serenity, calm, meditation.
GREEN - TAURUS - FRIDAY
- VENUS -
Primary healing color, use for prosperity, money, success,
fertility, growth and circumstances you don’t control.
For eliminating or creating confusion, cancellation, neutrality,
victory of good over evil, stalemate.
Use for special favors, to neutralize unwanted influence, to
repel, untangle, hesitation.
BLACK - CAPRICORN -
SATURDAY - SATURN -
Black is not an evil color. It is used to banish negative
influences. To overcome fear, jealousy, confusion, negativity
though it can also be used to create these conditions.
candles of all kinds, or books on candle burning]', go to
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