Happy Brigid's Day Everyone!|
Posted: February 1st. 2000
Times Viewed: 6,355
Today, we here at TWV began our preparations for 'Brigid's Day." Also called Imbolc or Candlemas, we celebrate the advent of the coming of the 'seasons of light' by setting up the 'traditional' Bride's Bed. The Lady figure is usually formed from straw or corn husks, dressed in a fine garment and then decorated with shells, flowers, ribbons and other 'pretties.' A wand with either an acorn or seed at its tip completes the ensemble. The Brigid doll is then laid in a cradle or basket (or that wonderful large china clam shell) and left either on the doorstep or in a prominent position in the home.
In the Scottish Hebrides of my ancestors, before settling into bed on Brigid's Night, the lady or daughters of the house would spread ashes before the fireplace. Upon rising, the womenfolk would check the ashes to see if Brigid (pronounced "Breed") had etched a message for them with Her wand. To find markings in the ashes was a sign of great honor and good fortune for the entire family. Since the fertility symbolism here is quite obvious- and Brigid is often revered as a patron goddess of childbirth-these symbols could also predict a new birth in the family or a 'country marriage' (handfasting) come Beltaine (Single ladies, spread your ashes!).
For many of us, this is also the 'flu season.' Brigid is a goddess of healing (many wells in Ireland and Scotland were-and still are to those in the know!- dedicated to Her), Brigid's Day is a good time to begin a healing ritual regime. Simply take your 'lightning water' (water collected from a lightning storm and considered a staple in this Witch household) or pure spring water and anoint your forehead with three drops each morning. If you are taking your Vitamin C or Echinacea tablets anyway, an alternative method would be to pour spring water over a silver coin (no lead please!) and then take three big gulps.
In the days following Brigid's Day, She will let you borrow Her 'magick wand' and use it to 'enliven' those houseplants that are getting a bit droopy from the lack of strong sunlight. Later, you can use the wand to motivate those seeds (that you plan to plant as soon as the frost danger is over) and get them at least thinking about waking up. And if that man in your life has been falling asleep on you lately -- .well, just ask first.
For the pastoral peoples in the countries where Brigid was honored, the time of Imbolc was when the sheep and goats began lactating (producing milk) again. This was great news for those families who had run out of milk products, mainly butter and cheese, over the winter months. (In fact, in parts of the Highlands, cheese was believed to be endowed with magickal properties.) For we pagans of today, perhaps this is but an interesting folknote, but for the people of old, going without such 'basics' was a real hardship. Think upon these things, and in so doing, honor your ancestors the next time that you pour milk into that first cup of coffee.
Natural rituals are not complicated. It is merely a matter of awareness and then anything-and everything- can become a sacred act. Give your kitties a small treat with a taste of cream. Forget the 2% stuff and get a little pint of the real thing just for this one day or evening. Then, relax in a ritual milk bath and think about all the blessings in your life. Or have a spray can whipped cream dual with a loved one. (How you remove all that cream afterwards is entirely up to you.)
In the spirit of Brigid's Day, I think that Fritz and I will just check those hearth ashes for wand-etchings in the morning and then- as long as any message that we may find contains no references to caloric intake-put a big fat dollop of cream cheese on our english muffins to celebrate. Now that is indeed a simple and natural ritual that we can really sink our teeth into!
Honored to be in your service,
The Witches' Voice
Year 2000 - Day Thirty-One
Article ID: 4473
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 5,415
Times Read: 6,355
Location: Tampa, Florida
Other Articles: Wren has posted 318 additional articles- View them?
Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE
Email Wren... (No, I have NOT opted to receive Pagan Invites! Please do NOT send me anonymous invites to groups, sales and events.)
Web Site Content (including: text - graphics - html - look & feel)
Copyright 1997-2014 The Witches' Voice Inc. All rights reserved
Note: Authors & Artists retain the copyright for their work(s) on this website.
Unauthorized reproduction without prior permission is a violation of copyright laws.
Website structure, evolution and php coding by Fritz Jung on a Macintosh G5.
Any and all personal political opinions expressed in the public listing sections (including, but not restricted to, personals, events, groups, shops, Wren’s Nest, etc.) are solely those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinion of The Witches’ Voice, Inc. TWV is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization.
Sponsorship: Visit the Witches' Voice Sponsor Page for info on how you
can help support this Community Resource. Donations ARE Tax Deductible.
The Witches' Voice carries a 501(c)(3) certificate and a Federal Tax ID.
Mail Us: The Witches' Voice Inc., P.O. Box 341018, Tampa, Florida 33694-1018 U.S.A.
of The World
NOTE: The essay on this page contains the writings and opinions of the listed author(s) and is not necessarily shared or endorsed by the Witches' Voice inc.
The Witches' Voice does not verify or attest to the historical accuracy contained in the content of this essay.
All WitchVox essays contain a valid email address, feel free to send your comments, thoughts or concerns directly to the listed author(s).