Candle Magic: How to get started

I love candle magic.

Candle magic is a simple yet powerful form of spellwork that anyone can do. Growing up in a Jewish home we lit the shabbos candles each Friday night and again the havdalah candle was lit and put out on Saturday evening. It always was so clear to me that lighting those Shabbat candles opened a portal into a different universe. A place where mystic studies, family and food were enjoyed. As children, we are told to blow out birthday candles and make a wish. Showing us that even adults believe in magic sometimes.

Working with candle magic is a powerful ally to add intention and focus to your magical practice. I have used it for many purposes. Always remember to only include yourself in the spell unless you have permission from the other person you are working in the realm of magic with. Spend time defining your intention and be sure that it supports the highest good of all beings. There are so many ways to do candle magic. We teach classes at Ace of Cups because there is so much tradition to working with fire in spell casting and manifestation. However what better way to learn than to dive right in? So here are some tips on how to get started with candle magic.

Choose the right type of candle: The first step is to choose the right type of candle for your spell. Consider what you want to achieve with your spell, and select a candle that will help you to achieve your goal. For example, if you want to find your creative voice, you might choose an orange candle. If you want to increase your health, you might choose a green candle. What kind of wax do you want to use? Something natural or a classic votive candle? Do you want to make the candle yourself? Would you like it to be in the shape of something? If you are doing candle magic for your dog you may want a candle in the shape of a dog. If it is for a new job or to bring luck you may want to choose a classic 7-day candle that is printed already and has been designed for that type of spell.

Choose an appropriate size: The next step is to choose an appropriate size candle for your spell. This is important because it will affect how long the candle burns and how long you will be responsible for your spell. I like the 7-day candles, but if I am wanting to do a quicker spell I will use the chime candles or tea lights. However, whenever I use the word “quick” with magic, I take a step back. Because magic usually takes time! So I tend to use chime candles for meditation, focus or to prepare for rituals.

Dress the candle: The next step is to dress the candle. This simply means adding any herbs, oils, or other ingredients that you feel will amplify the power of your spell. Once again, consider what you want to achieve with your spell and select ingredients that will help you to reach your goal. For example, if you’re doing a prosperity spell, you might want to add some abundance-drawing herbs like basil or mint. I like to use oils that were sacred to my ancestors. Use cinnamon to speed up the spell, but be cautious when you speed up spells. I will ask for a sped-up spell for things like a job interview the next day or a test. Not for love, healing, money, abundance etc. magic needs time and space to work safely and responsibly. You can also scribe directly into the wax. I use an old knife from my father for this, but a household safety pin will do.

Place the candle on your altar: Place your candle somewhere safe away from all flammable material on something safe like a metal plate. Build a small altar around it with items that represent what you are wanting to draw in. I do not recommend doing candle magic in the room you sleep in though if it feels right go for it.

Write your intention: You may choose to write your intention on a piece of paper, or a bay leaf and place it under the candle. It can be written in full sentences or drawn, abbreiveated etc. For example, if I am wanting to manifest more work playing music I may combine the first letter of each word into a pattern or sigil rather than writing out the entire sentence.

Purify the candle before lighting it: Use smoke of sage, lavender or mugwort (or another herb of your choice), sacred waters, waters of the world etc.

Light the candle: The final step is to light the candle and let it burn out completely. As it burns, focus on your intention for the spell. Visualize yourself achieving your goal, and let the flame of the candles carry your intention out into the universe. When to light it is up to you. I do like to use the moon cycles myself. Light it on a new moon to bring in new things and open new paths, light it on a full moon to shed light or add power to your spell, and light it on a waning moon to let go of things that do not serve you.

Keep up the spell work until the candle burns out: Each day and night restate your intention, burn more herbs around it, and add or take away items for the altar. I leave my candles burning on a mantle, however, if it does not feel safe to do so put it out and light it each day. Do not blow it out, simply put a plate over the top and let it go out from lack of oxygen. This way you do not symbolically blow out your spell and it is easier for the wick to be lit again.

When the candle is done burning you can dispose of the remains. I like to look for shapes and patterns in the leftover wax or on the glass and see if I notice any messages.

Remember the magic is not in the candle it is in you! But be prepared candle magic can be very powerful. If you using the 7-day candle you can recycle the glass, smash it, use it as a vase, boil it and use it as a drinking cup.

On rare occasions the candles will explode, crack, make noise and affirm your spell very boldly.

Be cautious, be smart, you are playing with fire.

Blessed be.