Category Archives: ice candles for Imbolc

Decorating your Imbolc Altar

Imbolc Blessings

Merry meet all,

Today we will look at assembling your altar for Imbolc. During Imbolc, many Wiccans and Pagans choose to honor the Celtic goddess Brighid. 

The traditional colours of Imbolc are red and white, because they are associated with Brighid. White is the pure colour of snow and red represents the fire of life and the blood of life. She also corresponds with the colour green, for the green mantle she wears and the stirrings of spring beneath the soil. Place red,white and green candles in candleholders on your altar. 

Your altar decor can reflect the theme of Imbolc. You could place a statue of Brighid on your altar. Add flowers such as crocuses and hyacinths to your altar. Or make a Brighid’s crown as a centrepiece with crystals and candles. 

Brighid is a Celtic Goddess so incorporate a Celtic theme on your altar too. Add a Brighid’s cross made from raffia or yarn. You could use cauldrons, chalices, anvils and cows or sheep. Place a book of poetry, flowers, and faeries on your altar. 

Share your Imbolc altar with the blog. Feel free to include photos!!

Here is how I decorated my altar. I posted this on paganwiccanabout.com. 

What’s On My Altar 

A cauldron, a solar sun symbol, a green, red + white candle, a hammer, two Brighid’s crosses, a feather, a chalice, a Brighid’s candle. These items all represent an aspect of the Goddess Brighid. Fire is her element and she is a solar deity so the solar symbol corresponds with that. The hammer is a symbol of Brighid and the Brighid’s crosses also represent her. My altar cloths are white with a red sash lying across the altar table. These colors represent the Imbolc season.

How I Celebrated Imbolc 

I attended an Imbolc Ritual to rededicate myself to the Goddess Brighid. Women of different ages and backgrounds that shared a common interest met at a friend’s house for the ceremony. We stood in a circle around the table for the ceremony.

We began the ceremony by calling the quarters or directions of air, fire, water, earth and spirit (north for earth, east for air, west for water and south for fire). This is to seek protection from unwanted energies from entering the sacred circle once cast. We lit candles on the table according to the quarter called and acknowledged that we were gathered this night to honor Brighid. We all focused on what was negative in our lives and swept the negative energies under the table with a broom. This is a symbolic action to ensure the energies are banished. Members took a turn to sweep with the broom, asking that the Goddess bless them for the coming year.

A cup of milk was offered to Brighid first, then poured into a bowl on the altar and passed round the circle to each member. The priestess said, “May Brighid lend her blessings to you this season.” Oatcakes were passed round in the same manner.

In the Dedication Ritual, each member was encouraged to ground herself and find inner peace. When we were ready, we individually expressed our dedication to the Goddess Brighid and the God of Mabon. I said: “I dedicate myself to the God and Goddess. Thank you for the blessings you have bestowed up on me this last year.” Then we closed the circle and the ritual ended. We called the quarters in the opposite direction that they were called at the beginning. If we began in the east (air) and ended in north, then we would begin with north (earth) and end with east.

Afterwards, we all joined in a feast to ground ourselves from the ceremony. We chatted and relaxed. Rituals always uplift my spirits and are a chance to release negative tensions. I feel more strongly connected and closer to the Divine Feminine after a ritual. I revere Wicca because it honors the Divine Feminine. I derive inspiration and love from the rituals, strengthening my faith and bond with the Goddess.

The other members receive something from the ritual, each in their own way, whether that is love, courage, inner strength or protection. We had all gathered to honor the Goddess, the Divine Feminine, worshipped by our ancestors dating back to Neolithic times. The Goddess is a symbol of the unity of all life in nature.

 

Tips and Tricks

  • Clean your home to release the stale energies and welcome in the early spring energies.
  • Prepare your altar for Imbolc
  • Prepare a special dish in honor of your deities.
  • Burn some wax on your candle and carve a shape of a Brighid’s cross on the candle, then add the corresponding herbs.

 

Blessed Be,
Lady Spiderwitch )O(

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Imbolc

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Merry meet all,

I survived the worst winter storm ever. Here, in Nova Scotia, we accumulated 40 cms of snow. I thought my house would blow down. Winter is here. But hope for spring remains. Imbolc is around the corner. The next turn in the Wheel of the Year is Imbolc. The ewes and cows begin to produce milk. To the ancient Celts, who survived on their stored food, this would be a relief. 

Imbolc is a time of magic and the first stirrings of life in the soil. Imbolc is a holiday that was celebrated by the ancient Celts. The Irish Gaelic called it Oimelc, or “ewe’s milk”. The ewes nursed their newly born lambs. The Celts also celebrated their version of Groundhog Day, but with a serpent instead of a rodent. They sang a song:

Thig an nathair as an toll
(The serpent will come from the hole)
la donn Bride
(on the brown day of Bride (Brighid)
Ged robh tri traighean dh’an
(though there may be three feet of snow)
Air leachd an lair
(On the surface of the ground.)
 In the early agricultural societies, the time of Imbolc was marked with the spring lambing, when the ewes lactacted. At some Neolithic sites in Ireland, underground chambers glow with the rising sun on Imbolc. 

I shall post more here about Imbolc. Stay safe and warm this winter!

Blessings,

Lady Spiderwitch

* Thanks to paganwicca.about.com for information. 

 

 

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Ice candles for Imbolc

Merry Meet All,

Ice candles are easy to make and lots of fun. Ice candles are a perfect way to celebrate Imbolc in the chilly month of February.

You will need the following:

Ice
paraffin wax
color and scent, essential oils
a taper candle
A candle mold or cardboard container
a double boiler
or two pans

Melt paraffin wax in a double boiler. Be sure the wax is never placed right over the heat, or you could start a fire. While the wax is melting, prepare the candle mold. If you choose to add color or scent to the candle, do it now. Use colors and scents that are appropriate for Imbolc.

Place the taper candle in the cardboard carton. Centre the candle. Fill the carton with ice. Pack the ice in around the candle. Do not use large chunks of ice.

Once the wax is melted, pour the wax into the mold. Be careful. As the hot wax pours in, it melts the ice, leaving small holes in the candle. Let the candle cool and poke a hole in the bottom of the container so the melted water can drain. It is good to do this over a sink. Let the candle ‘set’ overnight to harden the wax. In the morning, peel back all the cardboard container. You now have an ice candle in time for your Imbolc celebrations.

Tie a red and white riboon around the candle. Give the candle as a gift or use it in your rituals for Imbolc.

Blessed Be,
Lady Spiderwitch )O(

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