Happy Imbolc

Jason Pitzl-Waters —  February 1, 2010 — 26 Comments

Tonight and tomorrow is when most modern Pagans celebrate the fire festival of Imbolc sacred to the goddess Brigid, patroness of poets, healers, and smiths. Today is also the feast day of Saint Brigid of Ireland patron saint of poets, dairymaids, blacksmiths, healers, cattle, fugitives, Irish nuns, midwives, and new-born babies.


Brigid: Saint and Goddess.

In Kildare, Ireland’s town square, a perpetual flame is kept lit and housed in a statue that pays homage to the Pagan and Christian conceptions of Brigid. Festivities for La Feile Bride in Kildare started on January 31st and will continue through February 7th.

Here are a collection of quotes on this holiday.

“The earliest whisperings of Springtide are heard now as the Goddess nurtures Her Young Son. As a time of the year associated with beginning growth, Imbolc is an initiatory period for many. Here we plant the “seeds” of our hopes and dreams for the coming summer months.”Witchvox

“Imbolc is associated in Ireland and Scotland with Bríd the mythological woman whose nineteen nuns tend the eternal fire at Cill Dara. The sacred fire is associated with Uisneach, the omphalos or spiritual bellybutton of Ireland-as-goddess, and it was there that Bríd is said to have taken the veil. Imbolc is one of four seasonal holidays in the Celtic world with Halloween (Samhain), Bealtaine and Lughnasadh.”Brendan Patrick Keane, Irish Central

“It seems crazy that a fire Goddess be the alternative name for Imbolc.  But at least for coastal Caifornia, She might be the perfect patron for what this season signifies.  Looking around at the rushing streams, moss growing everywhere, and leaden skies, one could scarcely guess that much of California’s landscape is dominated by fire, by the fact it burns regularly, and that dousing the burns simply guarantees they will be all the worse when they come again.  As they will.”Gus diZerega, Beliefnet

“One of the nicest folk customs still practiced in many countries, and especially by Witches in the British Isles and parts of the U.S., is to place a lighted candle in each and every window of the house (or at least the windows that face the street), beginning at sundown on Candlemas Eve (February 1), allowing them to continue burning until sunrise. Make sure that such candles are well seated against tipping and guarded from nearby curtains, etc. What a cheery sight it is on this cold, bleak, and dreary night to see house after house with candlelit windows! And, of course, if you are your coven’s chandler, or if you just happen to like making candles, Candlemas Day is the day for doing it. Some covens hold candle-making parties and try to make and bless all the candles they’ll be using for the whole year on this day.”Mike Nichols, The Witches’ Sabbats

“I’d sit with the men, the women of God, There by the lake of beer, We’d be drinking good health forever, And every drop would be a prayer.”Saint Brigid’s Prayer

Many blessings to you this holiday! Be sure to check out the fifth annual Brigid in Cyperspace Poetry Reading in your travels around the web tomorrow, I’ll see you by the lake of beer!

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Jason Pitzl-Waters

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  • Crystal7431

    Good Imbolc Jason. Good Imbolc everyone.

  • whitewolf

    Have a wonderful Imbolc everyone. Blessings and have a wonderful week. :)

  • Tomb

    If the snowstorm Saturday was a indication of anything, it means that was one of Boreas's last Hurrahs and now we will have Brigid and Zephyrus coming out to the dance floor.

  • lonespark

    As a New Englander living in Phoenix, I kind of dread the coming of Spring, since it heralds the awful heat to come.

    • Rombald

      Loki: An American complaining about what the British have done. Kettle, meet frying pan!

  • lynn

    February 2 is also the feast day of Oya, from the Yoruba/Santeria pantheon.

    • http://necropolisnow.blogspot.com/ Caroline

      It's Lughnasad in the southern hemisphere.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/BryonMorrigan BryonMorrigan

      Any chance to exploit suffering, and Christians are there!

      • Tracie the Red

        Shoutout to the Asatru and other Heathens out there who are thanking Thor this day for beating those nasty jotnar back from Midgard

  • http://www.robinartisson.com Robin Artisson

    Or you can just use the solilunar calendar of the people who originally celebrated Imbolc/Oimelc.

    • http://www.blackrosecoven.com/?q=node TeNosce

      That is so gross… as a parent, I fear I am not above hatred for these perpetrators.

    • http://www.blackrosecoven.com/?q=node TeNosce

      Are you serious? Singing jigs about explosives?

      Do you want YOUR bar blown up when you sit down for a pint?

      • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lokisgodhi Lokisgodhi

        Irish rebel music is a well established genre.

  • http://www.blackrosecoven.com/?q=node TeNosce

    Yeah, it seems to me that shards of glass do not distinguish between the innocent and the guilty.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1378380906 Ceit De Vitto

    Thank you for posting this

  • lonespark

    Candlemas! Maybe I can talk my roommate into watching the candles while I'm asleep. I'm paranoid about burning down the place.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Riverbend Riverbend

    I've always thought "Burning Candle Unattended" would be a great name for a Pagan band…:)

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Crystal7431 Crystal7431

    Place the candle after you've weighted it with something in a shallow bowl of water. That's what I always do.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lokisgodhi Lokisgodhi

    Try again. They worked fine for me @ 11:30am ET.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Nope Snoozepossum

    (passes out large mugs and crocuses)

    Happy Imbolc!

  • http://eklyps.over-blog.com Sarasvati

    Happy Imbolc to you too ! :)

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/PhoenixFyre1 PhoenixFyre1

    I want to wish everyone a happy Imbolc and a blessed sabbat!

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/KhalilaRedBird KhalilaRedBird

    May all have a blessed Imbolc Candlemas Groundhog Day. Hail the Goddess by all Her Names! Ave Brid!

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lokisgodhi Lokisgodhi

    Were you the PhoenixFyre on the Fire group around 1999?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=645710833 Clare Slaney

    Yes, working now

    “Irish Republican Media – IRA Training Camp”

    Speechless.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lokisgodhi Lokisgodhi

    Notice the film was shot by French television. Nice to have NATO allies. ;-)