Imbolc Blessings

brigid

Merry meet all,

Imbolc is almost here. It is the first of the three spring Sabbats and I am excited. I can’t wait for spring. I’ve had enough of winter and I am sure I speak for many other people. I will perform a solitary ritual for myself on Imbolc. 

I will be busy this weekend. I wish you all a wonderful and memorable Imbolc. Blessed Be.

 

Lady Spiderwitch )O(

New Moon for Imbolc

Imbolc celebration

Merry meet all,

Tonight is the New Moon. The moon will be in Aquarius. It’s great that the New Moon occurs so close to Imbolc. Imbolc is the first of the three spring festivals. Imbolc is about new beginnings, which is what a new moon represents. 

The moon grows fuller after Imbolc. I plan to make a candle in honor of Imbolc. I want to make the candle white, and I’m gathering the supplies I’ll need. I have lots of herbs and cooking oil. I also have lots of wick and other things. I hope the candle turns out beautiful. I promise to keep you all posted. I also plan to heavily clean my apartment and erect an Imbolc-ish altar. I’m attending a public  Imbolc ritual hopefully, if all goes well. 

I’d love to hear your plans for Imbolc. Have you started your seeds and plants yet? Felt a burst of creativity? Getting excited over the increased daylight hours? You’re feeling the first stirrings of spring. I get like that too at this time of year. Winter won’t last forever. 

This year, something special is happening! The Earth Spirit Society is participating with the UN World Interfaith Harmony Week. Here is a link to more information about the Interfaith Harmony Week: http://worldinterfaithharmonyweek.com. The Earth Spirit Society is a group that seek to learn from each other and celebrate the eight Sabbats of the year. “… a group of individuals from a mix of religious traditions and spiritual paths largely composed of neo-Pagans and eclectic individuals that work together to serve and educate our communities.” http://essns.org/we_are.html (credit). It is awesome that Earth Spirit Society has the opportunity to be connected with the Interfaith Harmony Week. It shows that positive change has been created. 

I look forward to the celebration! I will keep you posted about that as well. 

 

Enjoy Imbolc and the New Moon! 

Blessings,

Lady Spiderwitch )O(

Cleaning House for Imbolc

Ewewithbabylamb

Merry meet all,

Did the post title grab your attention? I thought so. House work is not fun but since Imbolc is a Sabbat about cleansing and purification, I think housework should be involved too. 

The trick is to make it fun. Turn the chore into a ritual in itself. Begin by gathering all your cleaning supplies and dish gloves. Wipe your counter clean so you have a place to store them. Light a black candle for ridding your home and your sacred space of negative energy. I see my whole living space  as a sacred space. Play music to get you into the mood. Burn incense or a simmering incense mixture on your stove that corresponds with purification. Your home is your sacred space and should be treated as such. So don’t view this as a chore. You could set a timer if you are pressed for time. It makes the work go faster!

Now, you can get to work. Dust, mop, and scrub every inch of your home. Recycle and throw out the trash. Donate items to a thrift store or the Salvation Army. Wash the dishes and scrub the floors. Clean your whole apartment/ home. Burn frankincense essential oil to really give it that good clean smell. Mint and lavender are associated with cleaning. Who can resist the pure fresh scent of lemon. Your place should be feeling good and smelling great by now. Add essential oils and herbs to your dish water and mop water. 

When you are done, extinguish and toss the black candle. Let it burn down. Light a white candle to return positive energy to your home. Water your plants and feed your familiars! They will thank you! Say a prayer to your chosen kitchen witch deity or or other chosen deity for their blessings for your home and family, including pets!  Let the white candle burn down. 

Smudge your house with sage and asperge with salt and water. Draw a pentagram with your power hand over the bowl of saltwater. Say a blessing as you sprinkle the corners of your home with the saltwater. Sweep out bad energy with your besom. 

It couldn’t hurt to clean and scrub your altar too. Your home and altar area are now sparkling clean and revived with clearer energy. I hope your home feels great now. 

Now sit down on the floor to meditate in the most central spot of your home. Imagine your home filling with pure white light or energy. Imagine that to look anyway you want. Send the white light/ energy into every crack, every crevice. When you are done, open your eyes. Feel a difference? Good!

Store your cleaning tools and magickal supplies where they belong. Discard the white candle. You are now ready for an Imbolc celebration. 

Blessed Be,

Lady Spiderwitch )O(

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(

Imbolc

CIMG0912

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. 

 

 

New Year

Yule woods

Merry meet all,

I trust you all had a wonderful holiday and New Year. Now that things are back to normal, there are new things to look forward to.

This month, we have some special lunar energy. January 1st and January 30th are New Moons and Super Moons. January 15th is the Full Moon, also known as Wolf Moon and Cold Moon. Get your crystals and candles ready!!

The next turn in the Wheel of the Year is Imbolc. Imbolc is the first of the three spring Sabbats. I love Imbolc. I don’t exactly enjoy winter and it cheers me to know spring is around the corner. 

Stay tuned for more posts here about Imbolc!

Blessed Be,

Lady Spiderwitch

 

 

Merry Imbolc

Merry Meet All,

Imbolc is almost here. It is the first of the three spring Sabbats. Winter is slowly grinding to a halt and spring is ready to take the reins. Soon the crocuses and snowdrops will push from the earth and thumb their noses at Old Man Winter.

The Goddess Brighid is honored at Imbolc. Brighid is the goddess of poetry, smithcraft and healing. Imbolc occurs on February 2nd in the Northern Hemisphere. It is known as Candlemas, Imbolg, Brigit’s Eve. The light returns and brings hope of spring. The ewes swell with new life. THe other name for this holiday is Oimelc (“oy-meil”), ewe’s milk. The ewes were lactating for their lambs. Imbolg is one of the four great Celtic fire festivals.

The light returns and each day the light lasts longer. The Crone turns to the Maiden with the first signs of spring. Farmers check their grain supply and their wives check the pantry. Brighid is a fire goddess. She is a fertility goddess and connected to the fire of creation in the spring.

It is a good time to perform a ritual to honor Brighid and Imbolc. Make a corn dolly and decorate your altar. Make Brigid’s crosses and dedicate them on your altar. Light white candles and perform a house cleansing ceremony. The animals, plants and symbols sacred to Brigit are the cow: a white cow with red ears, fish, sheep since it is the season when sheep give birth, a snake and wolves, bears and badgers. The swan was sometimes a deity in disguise. Plants like blackberry is associated with the Goddess for its healing powers. Early spring flowers such as crocuses and snowdrops and primroses are sacred to Brigit. Grains and hops, hazel, oak, rowan and willow are sacred to her. The symbols sacred to her are iron, the flame, the Brighid’s Cross, the moon, nine white stones, the trinity of the maiden, mother and crone, two crescents and water. The triskellion, or three-armed cross, relates to her triple nature. Water represents both healing and divination.

Imbolc is a perfect time to cleanse and cast off winter’s heavy cloak of stale energy or whatever you are harboring internally that you wish to be rid of. Take a long hot soak and at your altar, perform a self-cleansing ceremony and get it all out of your system. You might feel revived at the end of it. Get rid of clutter or donate items. Clean your house and do a cleansing and house blessing ceremony. Perform a re-dedication and re-consecration of your tools.

About.com would have good information on Imbolg. If you are quick, you may find a good book on Imbolc and Brigid at your local metaphysical store. May you enjoy Imbolg and be blessed by the Goddess.

Blessed Be,
Lady Spiderwitch