Adventures in Hoodoo – Candles

Hoodoo is an American term, originating in the 19th century or earlier. One of its meanings refers to African-American folk magic.

I have no clue what I’m doing. Ha!

Now that you have that information…

I’m not new to candle magic. I’ve burned candles for years. I haven’t been consistent with it. Last summer, during my “rough period,” I pulled everything out of my arsenal and candles made their reappearance.

I took a trip to a large and popular Botanica in The Bronx. I wanted a candle to draw love. The young man who dressed the candle told me exactly how to burn it, what to say, and all the necessary information. He said, “When it is finished, bring it back so we can read it.”

It burned steady and constant. It also left very black soot inside the glass. I’ve had residue in my glass encased candles before, but  ¾ of the glass was black. It also looked like there was a face of some kind.

I brought it back to the Botanica. The head Santero read my candle for me.

Santero: You see this? (he said as he pointed to the face). This is a spirit of some kind.

Me: (stunned into stupidity) What kind of spirit?

Santero: Not a nice one. What was this for?

Me: Bringing love to me.

Santero: Well there was “something” stopping that, but it was caught in this candle.

Me: (Silence)

Santero: (He hands it back to me). Take this, wrap it up in that paper bag, and take it out and throw it in the garbage on the corner. (He points to a garbage can in the street that is in a far corner of the block). Then come back.

I stuffed it back in the paper bag that I brought it in and I placed it in the garbage can with the empty beer cans and McDonald’s wrappers.   I backed away quickly. I didn’t want to turn my back. What if the spirit came out of the glass, crawled out of the bag, took a leap across the air and into me? That’s the way it happens in the movies.

Once back in the Botanica, the Santero told me to get a plain white candle and burn it in the same manner as I did the pink one. Except this time, I was to pray for protection.

I burned the candle, day and night.

I sat at work worried that my apartment was engulfed in flames because I left an open flame. I couldn’t be sure if the spirit from the other candle would come back for revenge.  Was it angry I discarded it like an evil piece of trash?  

My imagination was in overdrive because nothing like that happened. My apartment was still there when I returned and the candle just burned and burned.

This time, the candle burned clear and steady for most of the time. When it got to the bottom 1/3 of the glass, something happened. Figures started to appear.

I took the picture, so I could show the Santero. I had a feeling that it would eventually melt away. I was correct.

I know what I saw, but I wanted someone else to see it. Someone who knew a thing or two about this stuff. To me, it looked like a native tribe dancing and rejoicing.CANDLE

I showed the Santero the photo and he was awed. He said he’d never seen anything like it. He intuited that it was my ancestors rejoicing and they are here to help me. The candle itself had finished burning and was now clear from top to bottom, but the photo was proof that something else was going on.


I was told it was now OK to burn another love candle.

I was prepared to do so until I was told by someone very experienced with Hoodoo and Palo that before I burn another candle for love, I needed to do a spiritual bath. The harmful spirit(s) were not done with me yet, they were only waiting.



(To be Cont’d.)



About Liz Kelso
This entry was posted in Adventures, Hoodoo and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Adventures in Hoodoo – Candles

  1. Pingback: Adventures in Hoodoo – Ancestor Altar | (in parentheses)

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