Imbolc, the celebration of winter’s loosening grip on the planet, has just passed. It began January 31st and went through February 2nd. Of all the Sabbats, I feel this is one of the quietest, most reflective by nature. Even though Old Mother winter’s fire is still going strong (indicating more cold weather to come) some signs of spring can be glimpsed, if you know where to look. We are still stiff with the cold, but circulation begins to return. We reflect, and our wishes from Beltane and Yule begin to show signs of coming true.
The rites practiced for Imbolc are generally as simple as the purpose behind the occasion. Things like lighting candles, meditating and constructing Brigid’s cross are common. I lit several candles, in honor of Brigid, whose Sabbat this is. Meditation followed, with the guide of submersing myself in a well of rebirth, and following the waterway deep into Mother Earth and then re-emerging on the other side. I mixed vanilla and honey into a glass of milk, symbolic of the mothers’ milk that will soon be flowing when babies, human and animal, that were conceived on Beltane are born.
Truthfully, meditating with a few candles and a favorite incense is something I would recommend to anyone for sheer relaxation purposes. It’s important to decompress on a regular basis.
How did you celebrate Imbolc? Did meditation soothe your soul, or were you more active in honoring the gods? Is there a practice that you have developed over the years that you now cannot imagine your celebration of life without?