The center candle represents the formless void before creation. It is the Union from which the God and Goddess emerged and toward which they seek to return. It is both creator and creation, all that was, all that is, and all that will be. It is the spark of spirit that we gather around. It is the hearth fire that comforts on cold dark winter nights. It is the center of our small circle of light with which we illuminate the darkness. It is our candle in the dark.
It is also the vertical axis through the planes of existence. It is the Tree of Life up which we may ascend or among who's roots we may descend.
The vertical axis is common to most religions. It is the Cross in Celtic Christianity, Voudoun, and Santaria. It is the staff of Hermes, the Greek God of travelers, who was symbolized by a pole at the crossroads. It is the Norse World Tree and the Native American World Tree as well.
This candle is being lit by the group and anyone in the group can light it.
Because this candle represents unity the lighting of the Center candle is a good time for a statement of the purpose of the ritual to focus the groups attention.
To help the group focus the person lighting the Candle could say a few words appropriate to the occasion such as one of these:
"As we begin this rite let us Kindle a flame and enlighten our path."© 1998-99 Sheherazahde, Braided Wheel Tradition
"As we begin this rite we light this candle for that which existed before creation"
"As we begin we light a candle for the formless void before creation, All that was, All that is, All that will be."
"We light this Candle for the unity of Creation."
"Let us remember the formless void out of which all creation comes"
"As we contemplate this flame Let us contemplate the Spirit that unites us all."
"May the Spirit of Creation kindle our souls As we kindle this flame."
"As this Candle illuminates the darkness may our actions illuminate our lives."
"We light this candle for the flame of truth, We light this candle for the warmth of love, We light this candle for the energy of action"
(This is the standard beginning from the Children's Service at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Binghamton, New York.)
How to cite this page:
Snyder, Eva M. "Lighting the Center Candle." February 27,1999. Online. Internet. [Put here the date you read or printed this page]. Available WWW: http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Ithaca/7746/BraidedWheel/Candle.html
Snyder, Eva M. (1999). Lighting the Center Candle. [Online]. Available WWW: http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Ithaca/7746/BraidedWheel/Candle.html