Spring is coming!
Let me take you through some of the natural festivals celebrated at the start of each new year…
Imbolc is a feastival with a variety of names, depending on which culture and location you’re looking at. In the Irish Gaelic, it’s called Oimelc, which translates to “ewe’s milk.”
‘Candlemas’ is the Christianized name for the holiday, of course. The older Pagan names were ‘Imbolc’ meaning, literally, ‘in the belly’ (of the Mother).
It’s a precursor to the end of winter, a time when the ewes are nursing their newly born lambs; spring and the planting season are right around the corner.
It is also the dreariest weather of the year and the perfect time for a Pagan Festival of Lights. Although this may seem a tenuous beginning, all the little buds, flowers and leaves will have arrived on schedule before Spring runs its course to Beltane.
Christian Conversion of a Pagan Celebration:
When Ireland converted to Christianity, it was hard to convince people to get rid of their old gods; the Roman Catholic Church could not very easily call the Great Goddess of Ireland a demon, so they canonized her instead.
Going forward, she would be ‘Saint’ Brigit, they ‘explained’ this by telling the Irish peasants that Brigit was ‘really’ an early Christian missionary sent to the Emerald Isle, and that the miracles she performed there ‘misled’ the common people into believing that she was a goddess!
So the church allowed them to worship as a saint — thus the creation of St. Brigit’s Day. Today, there are many churches around the world which bear her name.
At her shrine, the ancient Irish capital of Kildare, a group of 19 priestesses (no men allowed) kept a perpetual flame burning in her honour.
She was considered a goddess of fire, patroness of smith craft, poetry and healing (especially the healing touch of midwifery). Incidentally, another form of the name Brigit is ‘Bride’, it is said She bestows her special patronage on any woman about to be married or hand fasted, the woman being called ‘bride’ in her honour.
Brigit’s holiday was chiefly marked by the kindling of sacred fires, since she symbolized the fire of birth and healing, the fire of the forge, and the fire of poetic inspiration.
Light and Purification:
For Christians, February 2nd continues to be celebrated as ‘Candelmas’, as the day to bless all the church candles that would be used for the coming liturgical year. Taken from the celebrations of fire of the Goddess Brigit and called the feast of purification of the Virgin.
By Jewish law, it took forty days after a birth for a woman to be cleansed following the birth of a son. Forty days after Christmas – the birth of Jesus – is February 2nd. Candles were blessed, there was much feasting to be had.
Courtship & Love:
February is known as a month when love begins anew, in part to the widespread celebration of Valentine’s Day. In some parts of Europe, there was a belief that February 14th was the day that birds and animals began their annual hunt for a mate.
Valentine’s Day is thought to be named for the Christian priest who defied Emperor Claudius II’s edict banning young soldiers from marrying. In secret, Valentine “tied the knot” for many young couples. Eventually, he was captured and executed on Feb. 14, 269 C.E. Before his death, he smuggled a message to a girl he had befriended while imprisoned — the first Valentine’s Day card.
However, many scholars believe it has pagan origins. The word ‘Valentine’ being changed for the word ‘Galantine’ a French word used widely in the middle ages, who’s English meaning is ‘Gallant’. The word originally refers to a dashing young man known for his ‘affaires d’amour’, a true gallant.
With the birth of spring, a time for re generation and fresh starts, this is the perfect time to give yourself new beginnings.
You are an energy beings and you know how strong the energies of nature are all around you. Nature starts anew each year, why shouldn’t you?
Energy can change the order of your life.
What area would you change?
What would you do differently?
Think if you had the solution to all your problems, with just the power of your mind…what would your goal be then?
We are in an abundant Universe, as a spiritual being you know the power of Mother Nature and how that power can influence your day to day life.
You are the creator of your own reality; you have this unlimited energy in your belief processes. This is the same energy that surges through nature and this energy is created your physical world….so what CAN’T you do?!
Let this be your time of awakening, of new beginnings. Learn to change the way you believe to change your life.
Every new invention, every great leader who made a monumental change to their time, all started with absolute belief in their vision. A dream that became a reality because of their burning desire for change and their immovable faith that what they held as truth WOULD become a reality.
What is your burning desire?
What is it you have desired to change for so long?
What if you can have the success and abundance in your life you have always desired…what would you change?
In this amazing time of birth and growth for 2012, don’t you owe it to yourself to make the changes? for you to be the best you can be…to create YOUR new beginnings?