First Breath of Spring & Imbolc Blessings
This is Brighid’s season - Goddess of heart and hearth…
…bottomless well of wisdom and eternal flame of love. You may also know her as St. Brigid, a Catholic Saint who devoted her life to charity and generosity. Synchronistically, she built a monastery at a site sacred to the Goddess Bright, and she later died on Imbolc, February 1, 525. Or you may know her as an energy - a desire to nurture and nourish yourself and others.
We have just crossed the midway point between Winter Solstice and Spring Equinox - the Celtic holy day of Imbolc - a time of healing, prophecy, poetry, and creativity - the first breath of Spring.
In my Central Oregon home, Imbolc is whispering through the landscape. We’ve had days of warm golden sunshine and other days of cold wet wind and snow. As I go outside to play with my son, Taliesin, we pause at the trees and streams to say hello. We see the very first signs of new growth which will sprout into that most beautiful fresh green of baby leaves. It’s really quite wonder-full to see the the first stirrings after Winter’s rest.
Imbolc is a sacred time in the turning of the wheel of the year…
Imbolc, like each of the cross-quarter days, is a sacred time in the turning of the wheel. The Cailleach cedes place to Brighid. The Cailleach is the crone of winter - she who watches behind her veil. And Brighid, she is the protector of mothers and children - she who casts her mantle across the land to bless and shelter all.
I feel them both - one as the part of me that stands apart and feels a touch of loneliness; the other as the part of me that holds my family and friends close with love, gratitude, warmth and protection. We all have these moments of Winter’s quiet and Spring’s awakening. So, for this time…
“Saint Brigid Hearth Keeper Prayer”
Brigid of the Mantle, encompass us,
Lady of the Lambs, protect us,
Keeper of the Hearth, kindle us.
Beneath your mantle, gather us,
And restore us to memory.
Mothers of our mother, Foremothers strong.
Guide our hands in yours,
Remind us how to kindle the hearth.
To keep it bright, to preserve the flame.
Your hands upon ours, Our hands within yours,
To kindle the light, Both day and night.
The Mantle of Brigid about us,
The Memory of Brigid within us,
The Protection of Brigid keeping us
From harm, from ignorance, from heartlessness.
This day and night,
From dawn till dark, From dark till dawn.
“Song of Imbolc”
(Celtic Devotional by Caitlín Matthews)
I am the unopened bud, and I am the blossom,
I am the life-force gathering to a crest,
I am the still companion of the silence,
I am the far-flung seeker of the quest.
I am the daughter gathering in wisdom,
I am the son whose questions never cease,
I am the dawn-light searching out glad justice,
I am the centre where all souls find peace.
And a Simple Imbolc Ritual:
Light a white candle, gaze into the flame, whisper the Prayer to Brighid and sing the Song of Imbolc. Then, let the flame dance into the darkest corners of Winter, waking up your heart to the eternal and infinite love. And for a little extra assistance, welcome in the magical ally for this “moonth” - Angelica archangelica.
Magical Ally: Angelica archangelica
I just met Angelica a few months ago. Angelica is a root with the ability to ground the mystical into the physical. English herbalist, Nicholas Culpepper, wrote: “Some call this an herb of the Holy Ghost; others more moderate called it Angelica because of its angelic qualities…It resists poison by defending and comforting the heart, blood and spirits.” You can find this lovely root in an apothecary or order online. Sip a tea or burn incense or anoint yourself and…
Allow Angelica to gently anchor spirit into body.
Allow Angelica to bring you into emotional, spiritual and physical harmony.
Allow Angelica to ease you into the comfort of your home - inner and outer - heart and hearth - with healthy boundaries.
In this time of Imbolc, may you draw from the deep Well of Wisdom, receive the songs your heart longs to hear, and thirst no more. May you meditate on the Eternal Flame, offer your prayers and deepest longings, and feel Awen - the light of the eternal - light up the darkness.
Please Join Me:
Dream Circle at Fettle Botanic, Bend, OR (February 9 and March 9, 5:15-6:15pm)
Freedom from Pain with Dr. Mike Lane and Brian King at 1440 (February 24-March 1)
Luminous Body: Shine Your Light! with Jennifer, Edwina Ferro and Lydia Hwang at College Heights, San Mateo, CA (March 2, 3-5pm)
Beltane Soul Flame Retreat with Jennifer and Stephanie Bridwell near Mount Shasta (May 16-19)