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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Imbolc

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Gifts from Decay

 

     Imbolc has recently passed, a festival of warm candlelight and plans and intentions; it is the festival at which we sow our goals for the year to watch as they sprout and grow, and lead us to the change we wish to see.

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Posted by on in Signs & Portents
A Time of Birth and Renewal

Greetings, readers! Today (or yesterday, depending on how you count) is Imbolc, an ancient Celtic festival celebrating new life and considered historically to be the first day of spring. The holiday is also sometimes known as Brigid/Brighid’s Day, after the Gaelic goddess associated with it, and is also represented today by Groundhog Day and Candlemas.Today we’ve gathered all our posts related to Imbolc for you to peruse and enjoy. We hope that spring comes early for you all and fills your hearts with joy.

--Aryós Héngwis

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Celebrating the buds

At this time of year in my corner of the UK, the tree buds change in a noticeable way, and for me this is something to celebrate.

Trees form their leaf buds during the winter. The idea that trees sleep through the winter is a misconception perpetrated by the Pagan community, depending entirely on never looking that closely at trees. If you only ever see trees from a distance then yes, those apparently bare branches may look like nothing is going on, but this isn’t so! Trees make their leaves, and their catkins during the winter months. In January here, the catkins start opening. Somewhere around Imbolc, buds fatten discernibly.

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  • Judith Shaw
    Judith Shaw says #
    Wise words - "New leaves on trees can seem like an event – a sudden arrival of bright new greenness to mark the beginning of the g

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Exit the Cailleach, Welcome Brigid!

The Cailleach did not depart without a bit of drama in Ireland. I woke Imbolc eve to snowflakes. We had hail thjat fell like shrapnel. We had sleet. She lashed us and threw down steely stair rods of rain. The wind bayed. Your fingers froze. Friends speculated that our cloth Brat Bríd's would be ripped from the bushes and clothes lines and we would be bereft of the goddess blessing this spring. As nightfall descended the cloud cover was so thick the supermoon was as veiled as if she had still been eclipsed. But enter the Divine Feminine reborn...and repurposed.

The cloud parted and the Cailleach departed before sunrise. Over towards the coast, to the southwest the full moon hung bright and low to the horizon. My little black cat, Sparkle, was intent on going out to moon bathe. I opened the door and welcomed Bríd. And the brat was still intact, the clip still secure. I brought it in, sodden with rain, to dry.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Turn up the Heat and Chill Out

Imbolc is a natural time for contemplation and quietude. The weather often compels us indoors and forces us to slow down and partake in some sort of hibernation. If we stay this way for too long however, restlessness and boredom can set in. How does one cope with extreme temperatures and no waiting plane ticket to sunnier climates in sight? Sometimes even simulated heat is better than none.

On those winter nights that you're feeling chilled to the bone, turning up the heat and meditating could be just what is needed to help in biding your time until spring. Don't be afraid to boost it enough to break a sweat. Yes, it's an indulgence, but you can always turn it down to normal right after. Bundle up, put on your heaviest wrap-around scarf, wool hat, leg warmers, arm warmers, fuzzy socks, and fashion a Snuggie-worthy blanket around the back of your shoulders. Prop yourself up on too many comfy pillows.

Before you get completely settled in though, light your favorite scented candle, dim all the lights and light some relaxing incense as well, preferably something such as "Tranquility," by Essential Essences, with lavender mixed in. Likewise, heat up a lavender and chamomile Anti-Stress Comfort Wrap, such as the one from Earth Therapeutics to drape over your shoulders.

A Himalayan salt lamp is a great tool for assisting on nights such as these, and has been known to help in removing toxins, stale energy, and even allergens out of the dry air, as well. Speaking as one prone to allergies, I noticed a difference immediately. Turn on your favorite soft-voiced guided mediation or mood music, or tune in to the white noise of a radiator, wood burning stove, or fireplace, if you're lucky enough to have one in your home.

Breathe deep and give yourself a good 20-30 minutes to completely relax, recharge your energies and realign your chakras – there's a nifty guided meditation to do just that at the end of this article. Breathe in the positive and let go/breathe out that which no longer serves you. When you feel that you have reached your optimum peaceful state of mind, express gratitude to the Goddesses and Gods for the unique opportunity to take the time to do this exercise. Finish with a cup of hot brewed herbal tea, and sprinkle a few drops out on your back porch in offering to Mother Nature.

Leave the salt lamp on for the night and take note of the interesting dreams that you may remember in the morning. And don't forget to turn down the heat again!

Resources:

“Yoga Pose Shows Exercise Wellbeing And Health” by Stuart Miles from http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/

https://www.today.com/health/himalayan-salt-lamps-are-health-benefits-real-t107117

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i50ZAs7v9es

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8LIbeKQ60U

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Sown Seeds & Garden Dreams at Imbolc

No one loves Imbolc as much as me. Well, okay, that’s probably not true but this point on the wheel of the year is one of my favorites. As an avid gardener, I may in fact savor it even more than Ostara. By the time spring equinox rolls around, new life is everywhere--birds back from southern points, baby bunnies peeking out of shrubs, early spring flowers blooming. At Imbolc, it’s still at least part dream, and a beautiful dream at that! When we walk into the woods, the kids notice that in some spots the ground is no longer crunchy and frozen under foot.There are little patches of green, likely the hairy bittercress and henbit that will soon make neighboring lawn fanatics crazy. The cold world is gradually warming and stirring, ready to come back to life before long.

 

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  • Carl Neal
    Carl Neal says #
    I love Imbolc as well! We will make crosses tonight and I will start my favored seeds tomorrow. Bright Blessings!!!

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
The First Day of Spring?

I have a question, one that has perplexed me for several years. 

Tomorrow is the first day of February, marking the festival of Imbolc. The days are lengthening, the night time grows shorter. We're halfway through winter. Or are we?

I know that 21st of December is supposed to be the first day of winter, but this makes absolutely no sense to me. If we look at the year as half of it where the nights are longer than the days and half of it when the days are longer than the nights, then surely, the date that the nights get shorter can't be the mid point? 

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  • Virginia Carper
    Virginia Carper says #
    There is a divide between modern meteorology and traditional practices. The Chinese calendar and the Medieval European one had spr
  • Mark Green
    Mark Green says #
    Traditionally, the cross-quarter holidays were the beginnings of the seasons. Thus, the winter solstice is "midwinter", and the su
  • Charlie Rainbow Wolf
    Charlie Rainbow Wolf says #
    Hi Mark! I totally understand that this is indeed the beginning of spring, as far as the wheel of the year goes. My question is

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