The formal name for this form of divination is “ceromancy”, and it is traditionally done by melting wax in a brass bowl and pouring it slowly into another bowl filled with water, then reading the shapes that result. It is the precursor to “tasseomancy” – the reading of tea leaves or coffee grounds.

Formulate your question in your mind, then speak it aloud. Carefully melt some paraffin, wax or candle stubs in a double boiler. Do NOT melt wax directly over an open flame because the vapors may ignite, causing a dangerous explosion.

Then fill a fairly large pot or cauldron with cold water and slowly pour a little of the liquid wax into it. The wax will harden into a freeform shape as it plunges into the water. Carefully fish it out and place it on a cloth or paper towel. As you study the shape, it may remind you of an animal, plant or object. Turn the wax and look at it from different angles until it reminds you of something. If necessary, break it in two or more pieces to get simpler shapes. Interpret its meaning for your life by what you see in the shape.

If you are doing this with family or friends, let everyone brainstorm what the shapes look like and what they might mean. Someone might say, “It looks like a dolphin…that means playfulness to me”. Another: “I think it’s a shark, and stands for danger!” Another: “I think it’s a dolphin, but I think it symbolizes healing”. Anyone can make suggestions, but only the one who asked the question decides on the final interpretation, based on their intuition.

We recommend that only adults handle the hot wax, with children of the household keeping well back; the kids can handle the wax shapes when they’re cool, and help with the interpretation…

From Candlemas – Feast of Flames by Amber K & Azrael Arynn