Inspiring Enchantment & Illumination with Tarot & Intuitive Guidance

Rites of Brigid and Imbolc

Let me find my way to the well,
Let me find my way to the well.
Let me quench my thirst
With the waters of the earth.
Let me find my way to the well.

Let me find my way to the fire,
Let me find my way to the fire.
In Brigid’s sacred fire
Let me find my heart’s desire.
Let me find my way to the fire.
— Diane Baker, from Circle Round

Over this weekend, I have invited you to celebrate the great Sabbat of Imbolc, or Brigid, or Candlemas, as some may call it. By whichever name you like, it is the time when we bless the seeds of our intentions for the coming year, feeling the stirrings of life’s renewal in the land.

One of my favorite ways to observe this holy time is to literally bless some seeds that I will be planting once the ground is warm and the danger of frost has passed. They may represent a creative dream I have for the coming growing season, or fondest wishes and hopes about my cherished relationships.

Other rites you might consider at this sacred time include celebrating the return of the Sun’s light. In many Pagan homes at sunset, it is a tradition to light every lamp in the home, for at least a few moments. Or you might like to light a special candle in every room. Alternately, light a red candle and place this in a prominent window.

If you have snow on the ground where you live, walk in it for a while, and draw a magical symbol of the Sun, as your message to the slumbering Earth to awaken. Whether you have snow or not, walk upon the earth of your home, and remember it in Summer, reminding yourself and the spirit of the land that Winter’s grip is already changing.

Traditional dishes for Imbolc include any type of dairy foods. Around Imbolc, sheep began to lactate in preparation for birthing lambs. The new sheep milk was a welcome supplement to the dwindling stores, especially since cows would generally not be milking at this time. Our European ancestors’ diets depended heavily on milk products, known as “white meats” during the spring and summer months. Milk was often soured and processed into different forms of curds and soft cheeses, as hard cheeses were uncommon.

So you might want to fix something comforting with sour cream or cottage cheese. Also, spicy, full-bodied foods in honor of the Sun are equally magical. Curries and all dishes made with peppers, onions, leeks, shallots, garlic or chives would be perfect. Brigid is the Goddess of brewing, so spiced wines and mead are appropriate libations. May your rites be merry, for merry we meet, and merry we part, and merry we shall meet again.

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