Monday, February 1, 2010

What is Imbolc ??


Imbolc (Candlemas) February 2nd

What is Imbolc or Candlemas ??

Imbolc (pronounced IM-bolk), which is often called Candlemas, is the time when Wiccans and Pagans celebrate the renewing fertility of the Earth. Imbolc occurs on February 2nd. It's no coincidence that many people celebrate Groundhog Day on this date. What is Groundhog Day but a way to let Nature reassure us that spring really will come?


Imbolc, a Greater or Major Sabbat, is a holiday of purification and of the renewed fertility of the Earth. The Greater or Major Sabbats -- Samhain, Beltane, Imbolc and Lughnassad -- occur at the cross quarters, the midpoints between solstice and equinox. They mark the turning of the seasons and are considered to be very powerful days in and of themselves. Midpoints are considered to be times of great power because most things in Nature reach the peak of their strength when they are in the middle of their lives.

Brigid - The Presiding Deity

Whether you call her Brigid, Brigit, Bricta, Bride (pronounced "breed"), or by another of the many variations of her name, this Celtic goddess of fire, water, smithcraft and the hearth is the presiding deity of Imbolc. The many blessings that she bestows include healing, fertility, protection, warmth, wisdom, sustenance, inspiration and creativity. Imbolc is a wonderful time to call upon her for blessings.

How to receive the Blessings of Brigid

Brigid is known for, among other things, her kindness to animals. Spreading Imbolc Blessing Powder (made by Mountain Magik) calls forth her blessings, and also provides winter food for birds and other small animals.

Imbolc Blessing Powder is available at the New Earth Center from MountainMagik. Your Imbolc Blessing Powder will be in a beautiful Glass Container, tied with ribbons.

On the morning of Imbolc (February 2nd) take your container of Imbolc Blessing Powder outside and sprinkle the powder around your home to attract blessings to yourself and your household. Start in the East. Some of the powder may also be left in a sea shell as an offering outside. You may also leave some of the powder outside in a bird feeder as an offering of food for all small animals and birds.

Whistling is a traditional way to invoke Brigid, so whistling cheerfully as you toss the powder adds to its magic. You will also receive an invocation, from Mountain Magik , on parchment paper.

The ribbons tied around the glass container may be retained as a charm.