The Significance of the Candle on the Altar

Candle in ritual

If you work with an altar, you probably light a candle on it every day. Lighting a candle is a traditional and archetypal way to signal your readiness to engage with the other worlds and become open to inspiration, meditation or direction. In many religions, candle lighting is a sacred act that connects the person lighting the candle to unseen helpful energies or those who have passed on. Candles are traditionally lit in remembrance and to honour anniversaries, births and deaths.

The candle on your altar represents engagement and presence and when you light it you are undertaking a deeply symbolic, powerful and magical act. Lighting the candle brings together and combines the elemental powers of the cosmos and channels their energy into a single point of focus. 

On a basic level, the candle represents illumination and the light in the darkness. It signifies the light of the divine shining into the world. A lighted candle symbolises the vitalising powers of the Sun as the source of light and life and signifies happiness, prosperity, joy and spiritual rejoicing. The act of lighting the candle on your eighth ray altar brings forth your own innate connection to the benevolent powers of the Sun and celebrates you as a child of the universe. From this place of celebrating your solar nature and powers, you are more able to radiate your desires out into your life, the world and the cosmos.

In eighth ray magic, the magic of the goddess, the altar is the sacred place of attunement, alignment and adjustment to cosmic forces. Working with an eighth ray magical altar empowers you to co-create with the celestial forces and bring your desires to manifestation. The candle and the other magical items on your altar play important and significant roles in eighth ray magical rituals and the manifestation of your magical desires. 

As the centralising focal point of the eighth ray altar, the candle represents the meeting place of the elemental energies of the other sacred items. Each of the elementally charged ritual altar items are placed in the four quadrants that represent the four directions of North, East, South and West and the four elements of earth, air, fire and water. The candle is placed in the centre where the four quadrants meet. Here it acts as the ‘fifth essence’ or the ‘quintessence’. The candle as the quintessence is associated with balance, equilibrium, wholeness and universality.

In eighth ray ritual magic, the four items that are magically empowered to represent the elemental energies are:

  • The northern quadrant, representing the earth element and the physical body holds a ritual heartstone. The heartstone, which is made from crystal or minerals, facilitates a deep and profound connection between you and your physical body and the natural world you live in.
  • The eastern quadrant, representing the air element and the mental body, holds a ritual bell. The ritual bell sends a message to the celestial realms of your intent to co-create to purpose good.
  • The southern quadrant, representing the fire element and the egoic body, holds the ritual incense burner, where you offer your sacred suffumigation to the cosmos. This creates the necessary atmosphere for calling down the planetary powers of the heavens.
  • The western quadrant, representing the water element and the emotional body holds the ritual chalice, the sacred cup from which you drink your ritual libation and the divine light enters into your body to stand as one with the cosmos.

The ritual items are all powerful and essential to your eighth ray magical rituals. Each ritual item stands on its own as valuable and vital tool that is a necessary component of your work. The magician’s focus is pivotal in all magical work. The central candle is light that represents the containment, focus and ultimately the expression of your magical desires. It is the light that is illuminated and vivified when you utter the magical words:

“light victorious, light triumphant, light eternal, light in extension”.

I would love to hear from you, please share your comments and experiences below.


Light in Extension


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Eighth Ray Magick