Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Candle burns sigil*

As part of me stumbling across some of these occult blog cabal, I've heard a lot about sigils. I prefer to use candles in my practice. It doesn't seem to be particularly in vogue among many practitioners, at least I don't hear about people talking about in anyway way.

I think that is too bad for the most part. Frankly, I think they're a lot like a sigil, only better. Everything you do to a sigil (charge and burn) you do to a candle. Candles also tap into the power of fire and light to radiate your spell, in addition to any power you can raise yourself to charge them with. Further, you can coat a candle in herbs and oils that also help to empower your working. In fact, since inscribing names and symbols is part of the process of using candles, you can create a sigil and carve that into the candle and take advantage of that sigil process along rest of preparing the candle.

Now, I'm probably biased here. I've always been drawn to more folk types of magic. My experience with sigils is also much more limited. I've tried a handful of sigils - so my sample is pretty limited - and they've never seemed particularly effective. I'm sure they work for some people (knowledgable people get results with them). I may simply not have the knack for them or perhaps I had already imprinted on other forms of magic (I've tried them only in the last few years). Or I could simply need to practice them more to get the hang of them.

Part of the reason I have not experimented with them is that they just too difficult to use on the fly and lack the "oomph" to use as part ritual work. For example, you need a pen and paper to get started, so they are relatively convenient, but they're not even the most convenient form of magic out there. If I'm looking to bend the world in a small way (find my keys, manifest something simple), I'll do a simple fetch. Creating a fetch a technique I was taught that involves shaping a bit of your life force into a small spirit and sending it off on an errand on your behalf. Raise some energy, shape it, imbue it with your intent and send it off. I can be done with the whole fetch process in less time than it takes me to scratch out vowels in sentence. Both the fetch and sigil depend on my own ability or "energy" and nothing else.

Now, if I'm looking to bend the world a bit in my favor in any big way I'll take all the support I can get by burning prepared candles (by themselves or as part of a ritual or series of magic). Since sigils seem like they rest solely on the power of the magician casting them (and it is a big world out there), I'd rather make changes in conjunction with my spiritual allies and raise power via the use of herbs and candles as well as the other ways I raise power.

So sigils just don't seem that useful to me. Again, I hate to put a technique down that so many seems to get a lot of. It's just that I honestly don't see what the fuss is about.

*magical version of rock, paper, scissors


  1. i, for one, am not a "folk" magick type of fellar but i do enjoy some of its techniques because i'm a big fan of practical magick, i used to do alot of work with sigil magick as well as candle magick.

    modern sigil techniques are more so "charge and forget" type of deals and i find candle magick more so "charge and keep charging" type.

    i haven't had success with the normal way of casting a sigil as well since my mindset in magick is basically equivalent trade. i cast sigils my own way now and most of the time, i use them to program my intent to a spell.

    i actually enjoy doing candle magick, i should say that's probably the only working i do that's close to "high magick" - i use sigils, imprinted into a candle, as to program the intent and etc etc, i let the candle feed the spell away.

  2. I like candles for the ability to keep the magic going as well. Thanks for sharing how you use them. My next post covers how I use candles in more detailed way.