Before I start a discussion how to dress, anoint, light, dispose and create candles, I wanted to go through the importance of candles used in hoodoo and go through how they are different from other traditions.
For one thing, hoodoo is actually one of the first magical systems that has ever incorporated figure candles, these candles are special candles that is specially designed for your task. In hoodoo, sympathetic magic is very important, and so hoodoo invented and created specialized candles for those purposes.
Candles are so important in fact in hoodoo that its nearly used in every ritual or spell casting. There are various kinds of candles for your needs. So here are somethings you should know about candles :)
COLOR SYMBOLISM IN CANDLE MAGIC
In any tradition that uses candles we all known been a Pagan that color is very important. Now, in hoodoo its very stereotypical to be honest with you and maybe a bit racists for those who don't know hoodoo very well. More often than not, conjure men and women use Henri Gemache's instructions for candle burning, it became popular among conjure-workers of the 1940s to burn small free-standing candles or "lights" of various colours to draw luck, love, and money; for protection from evil to even wreak vengeance or exert control over others. Henri Gemache has some of the finest works for conjurors. The color symbolisms ascribed to altar candle colors is influenced by European magical traditions admixed with remnants of African religious symbolism.
White-- spiritual blessings, purity, healing, rest
Blue-- peace, harmony, joy, kindly intentions, healing
Green-- money, gambling, luck, bussiness, job, crops
Yellow-- devotion, prayer, money, cheerfulness, attraction
Red-- love, lust, affection, passion, bodily vigour
Pink-- attraction, romance, clean living
Purple-- mastery, power, ambition, control, compel, command
Orange-- change of plans, opening the way, prophetic dreams
*Brown-- court case, neutrality
Black-- repulsion, dark thoughts, sorrow, freedom from evil, vengeance
*Unlike wicca and modern paganism, black and white aren't considered an all purpose candle, it is BROWN that is considered a neutral color and therefore can be substituted for any candle for your rituals.
In addition to plain offertory candles, spiritual suppliers as early as the 1930s provided figural or image candles for special uses. These are perfect for those who work with candles and sympathetic magic of like creates like. More expensive than plain offertory candles, figural candles are preferred by many practitioners when working unusual or extremely strong spells, because their visual symbolism is easy to see and by carving names or other feautres in them they can be personalized to represent an individual or a cause.
For figural candles more often than not you will get the following colors:
Anything other than those colors are actually pretty rare.
*Black Cat-- often used in luck spells especially that for gambling.
Bride and Groom-- red for passion, pink for reconciliation, white to attract new love or sanctify married fidelity, black to cause harm or damage to a couple, blue for a peace in the home.
Lovers-- red for sexual passion, white for new love, pink for romantic love or reconciliation, blue for peaceful love.
*Divorce Candle-- cause a couple to separate
Lady and Gentleman-- often used when performing spells related to job, school or career-- white to meet someone new; pink for reconciliation or friendship, red to foster love, blue for peacefulness, health, or peace on the job and black for harm or revenge.
**"Adam" and "Eve"-- white to meet someone new, pink and red for love, blue for peacefulness at home or to bring about faithfulness, black for harm or revenge.
Penis and Vulva-- relating to the sexual behaviour; white to attract a new sex partner and to purify the genital organs, pink for romantic sex or to turn a friend into a lover, red to induce lust and passion, blue to bring fidelity or limit their sexual interest to the practitioner only or to bring healing to the genital organs, black to control a person ability to perform or to cause sexual vengeance.
Cross-- used for spiritual divine force or guidance. white for spiritual purity and insight, black for personal power and conjure work, brown for court cases and legal matters, green for money, red for love, orange for change, yellow for devotion, pink for romance and blue for peacefulness and divine favor.
***Devil-- red for love, lust, passion, green for money, court case, legal matters, debts, gambling and black for an enemy and cursing.
****Skull Candle-- black for meditation on death or for gamblers luck, blue for communion, white for ancestors.
Seven Knob Candle-- burned on seven days, for seven different wishes or for seven-fold strength on the same wish-- white for healing, black to do evil, green for money, red for love etc.
* You should only buy candles in those colors mentioned because there is no point using anything else than those
** These candles are very commonly used to represent a person, take full advantage of them.
*** I will get more into Devil's for you later, but it isn't the Christian devil but a Germanic spirit, and there are three colors.
**** These candles are perfect to commune with the spirits of the dead.
DOUBLE ACTION and REVERSING CANDLES
Sometimes you get a candle that is roughly 9" long jumbo candles that ahve been poured in two stages, so that they are half black and half another colour. These candles are used for jinx breaking, or breaking of another spell and sometimes but not so much used to gain something else to your desire. These are perfect candles for hex breaking.
GLASS ENCASED CANDLE
These candles are used for offertory services to Saints, spirits, Gods and so forth, they are also used in spells or simple spells that you just want to do in a hurry. They are perfect for those who aren't really into ritual and just want to burn one candle. They usually burn between 7 - 9 days depending on the candle, so take full advantage of them. They are very much used.
These are also very common, they are mostly just used for lighting but perfect for quick spells too.
So those are the basics, if you want me to expand and read more into one particular kind of candle just let me know and I will. But this is good for those who just simply want to know what kind of candles we use.
Well hoodoo is about knowing the earth, knowing your ancestors and knowing God (Divinity) that is where you get your power from.
The power you get from yourself, and this is obtained by knowing your true self and embracing that power that comes with it. I am great at hexing and cursing, and with all the people these days you know saying cursing is wrong, I have neglected myself and that practice, but HOODOO embraced that idea, and I learned how to control that side of me and use it for "good"
Nature is very important expessially in Christianity despite what many Wiccans and also Christians think. Nature is sacred to God, and those plants and animals and so forth are tehre for a reason, they have properties that we are meant to use or work in harmony with. By knowing yourself and honoring the Earth you can grow as a rootworker. You don't need to buy stuff, I don't I make everything. I hate buying things of hoodoo products because it just advertises hoodoo in a bad light, making it sound only for money.
Our ancestors and spirits of the dead are so important in hoodoo and also any animistic religion, where communion with the decease is just like the living. They can help support us, and make us stronger.
Finally, Divinity, to be a good hoodoo practitioenr you have to have a good sense of faith. Whatever that may be. Hoodoo is not a religion but its practices and core values or that of religious integrate and so Divinity plays a great part. One must know god and his faces and work with them if a rootworker can fully make him or herself a rootworker.
There is a lot more to rootworking than a lot of people think or believe. Its about honor, and respect. Community and healing. Its about Divinity, and empowwering oneself. Understanding and honoring the Earth, learning how to help her, learning how to heal her, learning her names, and her faces, learning her whispers in the trees and in the winds.
Its about learning about your ancestors, who they were, and how you can help them as they help you. Its about honoring and serving those who have gone before you, its about living everyday knowing that those you have loved are still there ever waiting for you because you will always be family.
Its about walking between worlds, understanding the importance of balance, whatever that may be and take shape. Its about communion with various kinds of spirits, and opening yourself to forces untold. Unimaginable. Its about taking all your knowledge, and blending it into soemthing beautiful and powerful. Something so very few have ever had the chance to experience.
Hoodoo is a very expensive magic for those who work with its products, but in reality its sooooo simple. Its not meant to make sense, and yet it speaks wonders and layers to a person. That is hoodoo. That in itself, is the essence of hoodoo.
Loved this...I had not really thought about the meaning of candle colors in hoodoo. I have a background in witchcraft but as you say it is similar but different. I am definitely tagging this page to refer back to!