Recently, I found this message in my inbox: “I’m just researching ‘Reiki activated aromatherapy candles’. What are your thoughts on the subject? Isn’t it just bean wax and a prayer?”
I’ll be honest, my first thought was “have you even looked at my website?” because the very foundation of my work is the connection between fragrance and energy. But then I realised not everyone thinks like me, and in fact, those of us who are “already awake” to the benefits of complementary therapies and mindfulness available outside the ‘herd consciousness’ are relatively few in number.
I know it’s part of my purpose to help others awaken to the benefits of a different way of thinking. So here is my longer answer…
For some people, the simple act of lighting a candle is enough. It’s a treat, something special that they do for themselves, and a sign that it’s time to relax. They may or may not want smell, and if they do, the choice on the shelf in the supermarket is perfectly good. Others love the idea of a candle “being” aromatherapy. For them smell=aroma, candle=relaxing, relaxing=therapy. Therefore a strong smell is the most important thing they look for in a candle. They love how their room fills with fragrance when the candle is lit. It makes them feel all is good with the world – and their energy shifts as a result of allowing themselves this small indulgence. It is quite incredible what a difference the simple act of lighting a candle can make to your mood. That small flame and pleasant smell can remove the stress of a bad day in moments.
What I think people often don’t appreciate is that lighting a candle with the intention of relaxing is actually ritualistic. There is great power in intention, particularly in regard to self-care, which is why the simple act of lighting a scented candle is enough for many people. There is absolutely no judgement here, just an awareness that we don’t all place the same importance on the same things.
However, if you are “spiritually awake” in the sense that, at the very least, you consciously practice mindfulness, meditation, yoga or similar then your candle ritual will very likely involve a lot more consideration.
Firstly, you will understand and be conscious that you are practicing self-care when you decide to light your candle, which will have been chosen very carefully according to criteria that fit your values. Since you are here, I’m going to assume you look for the same things as I do:
You want a candle that will burn slowly and cleanly, so you look for something made with vegetable waxes. You know that vegetable waxes don’t “throw” the scent as far as the cheaper petroleum based waxes (a drawback offset by lower carbon emissions), so you need a higher concentration of fragrance. Then, because of the high concentration of fragrance, you want that fragrance to be good quality at least and preferably beneficial too – so you look for pure essential oils. You understand that true aromatherapy harnesses the beneficial effects of real essential oils, and can actually help create or change a mood or feeling. For you, an environmentally friendly, vegetable wax candle, scented with essential oils truly is “Aroma-Therapy”. Such quality doesn’t come cheap, of course, but the decadence of an exquisitely made candle cannot be argued with. It is all part of the self-worth, self-care element of this ritual.
If you can find a candle that meets all of the above criteria which is also beautifully packaged, even better! But if you happen to come across such a candle made with the added intention of helping you feel good through Reiki, or any other type of energetic infusion – then of course you are interested!
Ultimately, and with some sadness, I understand that for someone who isn’t “open” to the potential benefits of genuine aromatherapy, there is every chance they will be left cold even if they were presented with the World’s best candle.
In short, I would say this; I do truly and absolutely believe there is SO much more to candles (and fragrance in general) than “bean wax and a prayer”!
For me, scented candles are a sort of “gateway drug” to the practice of mindfulness, self-care rituals and the embracing of complementary therapies that ultimately leave a person better equipped to deal with the everyday stresses of life, which is why I am expanding the proposed range of products in the up-coming “ME Collection” to include candles which meet ALL of the above ideals.
I’d love to know what scented candles mean to you, and what other self-care rituals you practice on a daily or weekly basis. Get involved in the conversation in the comments below!