Candle magic, also known as sympathetic magic, is a simple form of spell casting. This article contains an overview of candle magic, from the historical use of candles in magic, to ways that you can incorporate them into your own magic spells and rituals.
History of Candle Use in Magic
There is evidence of candles being used be the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. Throughout the years and in many different cultures there is a history of candles being used in superstitions and rituals. The most famous of these rituals is the blowing out of candles on a birthday cake. A theory is that this originates from the ancient Greeks paying tribute to the moon God Artemis. They would bake a round cake and light with candles. If the candles could be blown out with one breath, your silent wish would come true. Candle burning in a ritualistic sense is not just used by Wiccans; other Pagan religions, Catholics, Jews, and Christians also use candles as part of their practice.
Candles and Wicca
Candle magic is an ancient tradition amongst Wiccans and can be traced throughout their history. Candles are used for spells and as a means of divination. Candle magic is one of the most widely used forms of magic today. Witches use many different types of candles in spells, from small spell candles to charged ritual candles.
Why Use Candles in Spells and Rituals?
By practicing candle magic you are harnessing the power of fire to bring about change. Candle magic is a very accessible form of magic and the rituals do not need to be complicated. Candles are inexpensive to buy. Therefore candle magic is ideal for a beginner to Wicca.
Choosing the Right Candles
When casting your spell, the type of candle you use is important. Here are some tips on making your selection:
The colour of your candle can take on a special meaning. We have written a guide on different candle colours to help you choose. You can also choose an uncoloured candle if you wish. Candle magick existed long before coloured candles were created. Therefore choosing a coloured candle is a personal choice, not a requirement. The choice is up to you.
Size matters. You want to choose a candle with the burn time to last the length of your spell. You can choose a candle which burns longer, however you need to be careful of the dangers of leaving a candle burning for a long time. Never leave a burning candle unattended. You also want to use a new candle for each spell, so don’t get an overly large candle thinking that you can use it again.
Scent or Unscented?
This is up to you. Most Wiccans will use unscented. However if you would like to use a scented one, make sure the scent is associated with the purpose of the spell.
Where to Buy Spell Candles
For high quality taper candles in beautiful colours, check out this selection at World of Witchery. These can be used in spells, but are also commonly used around the house at decor. For smaller spell candles, these chime candles have a burning time of approximately 2.5 hours – so you can let them burn down (it’s generally not recommended to use a candle for more than one spell). Votive candles are usually used for spells that are performed several times, and you can find a selection of chakra votives, as well as healing essential oil votive candles here.
The largest candles are jar candles and pillar candles. Our pillar candles include chakra candles for working on each of the energy centers. Jar candles are traditionally used in folk magicks such as hoodoo, and it’s thought that they send your prayers straight to the spiritual realm. It’s usual to light a jar candle for 5-7 days continuously while offering up prayers or intentions once or more per day. Be sure this is in a safe place where nothing can catch fire!
Another great option is ritually charged candles, which are excellent for beginners – but even experienced Witches turn to ritually charged candles for an extra boost in their spells! These candles are made by spiritual artisans and have been crafted with a specific magickal intent. Here are our recommended candles for each purpose:
How to Cast a Candle Magic Spell
Before casting a spell you need to cleanse and anoint your candle. To cleanse it rub the candle in sea salt or rub it with rubbing alcohol. To anointing your candle you rub oil on it. Take the oil and rub it between your forefinger and your thumb. With one hand rub the oil from the centre of the candle upwards. With the other hand you rub the oil downward. Focus on your intent as you do so.
- Be realistic and specific and try to summarise your goal in one thought or sentence.
- Using your goal, write a simple spell to chant.
- Chant your spell then light your candle to release its energy. Repeat your chant as many times as you can.
- Blow, pinch out or snuff the candle flame.
Divination with Candles
Candle magic can also be used as a means of divination. You can read the wax, or read the way that the candle burns. If you feel a connection to candles and using candle magic, you could read up about how candles can be used for divination. There is a lot of information available about the different ways of reading the candle; from how the flame flickers, to reading the shape of the wax when you pour it.
Another way you can explore using candles is by learning how to make them. Making candles isn’t as difficult as you might think. As well as the achievement of knowing you have made your own, you will also have candles that you will feel more spiritually attached to.
This has been a very brief guide to candle magic, which I hope you have enjoyed. As with other ways of casting spells, there are many ways of doing so. If you are interested in candle magic I hope you enjoy discovering more on your own and making it part of your spiritual journey.