Saturday, December 22, 2012

Ice Candles by Patti Wigington plus a spell

Ice candles are a lot of fun and easy to make during the winter months. Since February is traditionally a snow-filled time, at least in the northern hemisphere, why not make some ice candles to celebrate Imbolc, which is a day of candles and light?
You'll need the following:
  • Ice
  • Paraffin wax
  • Color and scent (optional)
  • A taper candle
  • A cardboard container, like a milk carton
  • A double boiler, or two pans
Melt the paraffin wax in the double boiler. Make sure that the wax is never placed directly over the heat, or you could end up with a fire. While the wax is melting, you can prepare your candle mold. If you want to add color or scent to your candle, this is the time to add it to the melted wax.
Place the taper candle into the center of the cardboard carton. Fill the carton with ice, packing them loosely in around the taper candle. Use small chunks of ice -- if they're too large, your candle will be nothing but big holes.
Once the wax has melted completely, pour it into the container carefully, making sure that it goes around the ice evenly. As the hot wax pours in, it will melt the ice, leaving small holes in the candle. Allow the candle to cool, and then poke a hole in the bottom of the cardboard carton so the melted water can drain out (it's a good idea to do this over a sink). Let the candle sit overnight so the wax can harden completely, and in the morning, peel back all of the cardboard container. You'll have a complete ice candle, which you can use in ritual or for decoration.

When it comes to colors, you may wish to have a variety on hand for different magical purposes. Typically, color correspondences for candle magic are as follows:
  • Red: Courage and health, sexual love and lust
  • Pink: Friendship, sweet love
  • Orange: Attraction and encouragement
  • Gold: Financial gain, business endeavors, solar connections
  • Yellow: Persuasion and protection
  • Green: Financial gain, abundance, fertility
  • Light Blue: Health, patience and understanding
  • Dark Blue: Depression and vulnerability
  • Purple: Ambition and power
  • Brown: Earth-related or animal-related workings
  • Black: Negativity and banishment
  • White: Purity and truth*
  • Silver: Reflection, intuition, lunar connections 

Using Your Candle in Ritual

After you've selected a candle, you'll want to oil it or dress it before burning. This is a method by which you'll establish a psychic link between you and the candle itself. In other words, you're charging the candle with your own energy and personal vibrations, and projecting your intent into the wax before you burn it. To dress a candle, you'll need a natural oil -- many practitioners like grape seed because it has no smell. Another option is to use special candle magic oils from one of the Wiccan supply stores. Begin at the top of the candle, and rub the oil downward to the middle. Then, begin at the base of the candle and rub the oil up towards the middle, ending where the first coating of oil left off. In some traditions of Wicca, the anointing is done just the opposite way -- start in the middle and work your way towards the two ends. 

If your working calls for herbs to be used as well, roll the oiled candle in the powdered herbs until it is coated all the way around.

The most basic form of candle magic uses a piece of colored paper that matches the intent of your candle. Decide what your goal is, and write it on the piece of paper -- just for an example, let's say we're going to do a money working. Write down your intent -- something like I will become financially prosperous. In some traditions, you would write your intent in a magical alphabet, such as Theban or Enochian. Because this is a money-oriented working, we would select either a gold or green piece of paper, and a candle of the same color. As you write down your goal, visualize yourself achieving that goal. Think about the different ways in which your goal might manifest -- could you be getting a raise at work? Perhaps someone who owed you money will arrive out of the blue to repay their debt.

Once you've written down your goal, fold the paper, concentrating on your intent the whole time. Some people like to say a small incantation as they do this -- if you're one of those people, this is a good place to do it. It doesn't have to be anything fancy. You can use something as simple as:

Extra money come my way,
I could use a little cash today.
Extra money come to me,
As I will, so it shall be.

Place one corned of the folded paper into the candle's flame and allow it to catch fire. Hold the paper as long as possible (without burning your fingers) and then place it in a fire-safe bowl or cauldron to burn the rest of the way on its own. Allow the candle to burn out completely. When the candle has burned out completely, dispose of it, rather than saving it to use again for another working. Usually there's not much left of a candle except a stub of wax, and you can either bury it outdoors or dispose of it in whatever manner you choose.

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