Wednesday, February 1, 2012


For most of us living in the Northern Hemisphere, February is a time of storms and bleak, short days which reflect the stark reality of Winter while it  conveys the hope of Spring. It is a time that we celebrate the renewing fertility of the Earth

The celebration of Imbolc falls midpoint between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. We have reached the turning point when one is at ultimate darkness and from now on everything will start to get less dark. In earlier times, the ancient rite was traditionally held on the eve of February 1st.  It was a purification fire festival called the 'Feast of Lights'. 

It is the point in the cycle of seasons when new life is beginning, a time when the first stirrings can be felt in the natural world, of renewed life of the earth after winter and the growing strength of the sun. It is the festival of the beginning of spring which marked the arrival of milk for the first birthing lambs of spring. Imbolc is the festival of the Maiden Goddess, particularly Brigid in the Celtic traditions, whose associations include the dawn and the inner fire. This Sabbat celebrates the goddess bringing the youthful sun God back to the earth in spring
Imbolc is a time to clean out the old to make way for the new, to light candles to help the young Sun God.  It's a great time for some early spring cleaning, too. Get rid of things you don't need. Get ready for the spring season to come. Place strips of cloth or ribbons outdoors, to catch the first light of the sun on Imbolc or the dew of the dawn.  This is called Brat Bride or Brigit's cloak.  The cloths were kept and used for healing throughout the year. 

On Imbolc, herbs such as angelica, basil, rowan, celandine, heather, and myrrh are used to celebrate. Snowdrops and candles are placed on altars to represent all things new.The lighting of candles is done to encourage the sun in its return toward the earth. Place as many white candles around your house or on the Imbolc altar as you can, because the candles' glow symbolizes the growing light.


  1. -clapping hands- I can comment!!!!!!!!! Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Had not thought of Imbolc. You reminded me, once again.

    I like the cleaning-out-of-the-old...

    But, I just don't resonate with any form of rushing the Turning Of The Wheel of The Year. Of wising for spring, while winter still walks the land.

    I know! I'm different, yet again. Most people do long for spring. Long for it.

    And I do my fair share of complaining about dull, gray days and ice and etc., of this long time of year. And yet, I don't long for spring.

    And this makes me different, from so many. Wonder what is it's basis? Other than not wanting to hurry time, in any way, especially since I am *Olden.*

    "Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading,
    to make reading one of his deep and continuing needs, is good for him."

    - Maya Angelou

  2. Are you sure it's February.....It's going to be in the 50's here today. ;0)(((hugs)))Pat

  3. ~brightest imbolc blessings to you and yours my dear friend...much love light and blessings~

  4. I do wish there was glistening snow on the ground instead of 62 degree temps today. Blessed Imbolc Mary.

  5. Isn't it wonderful that so many current traditions are based on myth..... such as Spring Cleaning.....Thanks for the lesson today , dear Mary.