Pronounced EE-molc, Imbolc is also known as Brigid’s (pronounced Breed) Day, (yes, the same Saint Brigid who laid down her magic cloak), and marks the beginning of spring. Brigid is the Celtic goddess of fertility, and this day marks her transformation from the crone of winter to the maiden of spring. She represents regeneration and light. We honor her by lighting white candles and hearth fires and celebrating the sun’s rays. Honest, the sun was out today. The snowfall just blocked the view.
Those of us in the Northern Hemisphere who follow the wheel of the seasons, don’t need a groundhog (though they are very cute) to know the sun is returning to bring warmth to us once again. A few buds might be seen on the trees and, if there wasn’t a thousand feet of snow on the ground, one might see some crocus flowers as well.
One common Imbolc ritual is a deep cleansing of the body and home and an offering of milk, to represent the awakening seeds. Although I would like to write my home is clean, at least I can attest to the clean skin. Hopefully Brigid is forgiving and will accept my white candles, dirty kitchen floor, and offering of bird seed (I’m out of milk). At least the birds were grateful.
Blessed Imbolc to you and may the seeds of spring grow in your heart. Blessed be :]