|Names||Imbolc / Bridig / Oilmelc / Festival of Candels|
|Meaning in the annual cycle||Beginning of the growing season|
|Symbols||Straw dolls, straw cross (Brigid’s cross), candle, milk|
|Colours||white, bright-yellow, bright-green, bright-pink|
|Keywords||Awakening, Renewal, Cleaning, Making Plans|
Why do we celebrate Imbolc?
The sun rises earlier and sets later, the trees sprout, the birds sing. The dull winter seems to come to an end. At this day, which is between the spring equinox and the winter solstice, we celebrate the powerful energy of light. Imbolc is one of the four moon festivals in the Celtic wheel of the year (alongside with Samhain, Beltane and Lughnasad). The moon is connected to female energy. However, in some languages it becomes a masculine word (e.g., German: der Mond, Hindi: chaand). But nevertheless many languages use the female article: la luna (Spanish, Italian), la lune (French), die maan (Afrikaans), la lua (Portuguese).
At Imbolc we celebrate fertility, renewal, youth, cleansing and freshness.
How to celebrate Imbolc today
Imbolc gives us the opportunity to prepare for the future. We are still resting in winter, but are already suspecting the spring. Now we are planning what we implemented in the spring.
We can free ourselves from the torpidity and become more active again. The early mornings with twittering of birds are great for walks or meditations outdoors. Feel the energy of Mother Earth. Feel how she slowly stretches and awakens.
We can only let new things into our hearts if we make room for them. Now it’s time to look inside and clear out. What don’t I need anymore? What doesn’t help me anymore? What can I leave behind so I can move on?
Now is the perfect time to clean the house. We can also treat yourselves with a face pack or a self-massage with almond or sesame oil.
In winter, we long for the activities of the summer. Now is the time to turn your dreams into plans. What do you want to do in the bright half of the year?
Festival of Lights
Earlier, when there was no electric light, candles were still very valuable. Lets appreciate the light again. Brighten your house and your garden in the twilight with lanterns and candles. Give your eyes a break from the artificial light and enjoy the enchanting power of the flame.
Imbolc fire ritual on February 2nd
All these rituals above can be combined in a fire ceremony. For that you need a candle or a campfire. If you are celebrating in closed rooms, have a glass of water ready for safety and work on a fireproof surface (metal plate, flagstone …)
- Fire (candle + fireproof pad / campfire)
- Water / juice for energy transfer
- 2 sheets of paper and pen
- incense sticks / frankincense
Preparation: Put everything around you and eliminate all distractions (phone, pets in another room, no-disturbance sign …). You can build a small altar to bring more energy into the ritual. You can put stones, personal charms, things in light or white colors and everything that feels right for you, around the fire. Now sit in a comfortable position on the floor and close your eyes.
1. Meditation: Journey to the awakening of the earth
Breathe deeply for a few moments and relax. Now imagine that wherever you touch the ground, you grow roots into the earth. These connect you to the earth and everything which is connected to the earth. Take your time and feel this connection with your whole being. Feel the energy of the earth. In front of your inner eye, you can see the earth stretching. Feel this energy and bring it into your body. In your own time, you then return to reality without losing this connection. Feel the energy of the earth and open your eyes.
2. Let go
Light the candle / campfire. Now take a piece of paper and a pen and write down everything you want to let go. Illness, habits, beliefs, emotions … You decide what no longer serves you.
After you have written everything down, you read through your list and feel every single thing. Where can you feel this energy in your body? Feel every spot in your body where you will get rid of something.
Then you burn your list in the flames. Watch as it burns and feel like the fire cleans the affected areas in your body and makes room for something new. Take enough time to feel the changes. Now there is room for new energy again!
3. House Cleaning
What you just did with your body, you now want to do in your home as well. Light an incense and go through your home. Clean your home with incense and let new energy come in. If nobody can watch the fire, extinguish the flame. Please go to each room and ask that all used energy should disappear. Then you release briefly, so that this energy can really escape. Return to your altar and light the flame again.
Now take the second sheet of paper and write down everything you want to do and achieve in the bright half of this year. Rational thinking does not matter. As long as you believe in achieving something, you will achieve it! But be fair with you and the universe, and set realistic times. Visiting every continent within a month would firstly be tight in terms of time and, secondly, not very fulfilling.
When you have finished your list, fold the paper and put the glass of water or juice on it. Close your eyes and imagine what it feels like to accomplish these things. How is the feeling? How are you doing? Be completely absorbed in this feeling.
Hold the glass and let this energy of joy and success go into the liquid. Then you drink the glass. Give yourself the promise to believe in you and your goals. You deserve to fulfill your dreams!
5. Enjoy the light!
Imbolc is the festival of lights. Take the liberty and time to just stare into the flames and process your ritual.
I wish you a magical Imbolc ceremony!
|1.||Samhain||beginning of the winter half-year, 11th new moon in the calendar year||usually celebrated on the 31st of October|
|2.||Yule||winter solstice||21st of December|
|3.||Imbolc||2nd full moon after Yule||usually celebrated on 2nd of February|
|4.||Ostara||Spring Equinox||21st of March|
|5.||Beltane||Beginning of the summer half-year, 5th full moon after Yule||usually celebrated on 30th of April|
|6.||Litha||Summer solstice||21st of June|
|7.||Lammas||8th full moon after Yule||usually celebrated on 2nd of August|
|8.||Mabon||Autumn equinox||23rd of September|