Friday, January 29, 2016

Imbolc / Candlemas

     Merry Imbolc to everyone! I was supposed to celebrate Imbolc on Feb2-5 but i chose to do it on Jan 24, 2015 since it's full moon. Apart from that i cannot do it here where i work so i had to go to my other place a bit provincial so that i can meditate quietly. But i cannot do it on the exact date for the celebration of Imbolc due to my schedule so i just made  a point to squeeze it in. 
     I am a solitary witch. i prefer to be alone but othertimes i look for people where i can celebrate sabbats with. Yet knowing the nature of religion in this country, Christianity and Catholicism, meeting like minded people is quite scarce. 

     For anyone who isn't aware of what Imbolc/Candlemas is, Imbolc or Imbolg (pronounced i-molg), also called (Saint) Brigid's Day (Irish: Lá Fhéile Bríde, Scottish Gaelic: Là Fhèill Brìghde,Manx: Laa'l Breeshey), is a Gaelic festival marking the beginning of spring. Most commonly it is held on 1 February, or about halfway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. Historically, it was widely observed throughout Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man. It is one of the four Gaelic seasonal festivals—along with Beltane, Lughnasadh and Samhain—and corresponds to the Welsh Gŵyl Fair y Canhwyllau. Christians observe it as the feast day of Saint Brigid, especially in Ireland.

Imbolc is mentioned in some of the earliest Irish literature and there is evidence it has been an important date since ancient times. It is believed that it was originally a pagan festival associated with the goddess Brigid and that it was Christianized as a festival of Saint Brigid, who is thought to be a Christianization of the goddess. At Imbolc, Brigid's crosses were made and a doll-like figure of Brigid, called a Brídeóg, would be paraded from house-to-house. Brigid was said to visit one's home at Imbolc. To receive her blessings, people would make a bed for Brigid and leave her food and drink, while items of clothing would be left outside for her to bless. Brigid was also invoked to protect homes and livestock. Special feasts were had, holy wells were visited and it was also a time for divination.
Although many of its customs died out in the 20th century, it is still observed and in some places it has been revived as a cultural event. Since the latter 20th century, Celtic neopagans and Wiccans have observed Imbolc, or something based on it, as a religious holiday.

     From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 I was raised a Catholic but i have always had a huge doubt in my mind that there's more to ife than just how it is being led by a book that's made holy by some people anonymous to me. Since i was a kid i have always been fascinated by lores and myths and gods and goddesses. I thought it will all wear off once i grow up like my parents used to say. But some of my grandparents say otherwise. They are witches and still practicing until some of them died of old age. I never had a chance to practice what my grandparents tell me until now. However the knowlege i have from my grandparents are quite different from Wicca since Wicca originated from Europe. But most of the beliefs and teachings are simiar to the other. Now i am thankful i found Wicca in my life. I feel free to love and care for myself and others without having fear of being judged. And i became more aware of the significance of other beings aside from me. 

     When i celebrated Imbolc, i cooked some food which is available in my country. My sister, who is also a solitary Wiccan, helped me prepare for the candles and fruits to be served for the coming of warm light being brought by the divine goddess. We prayed and thanked Cernunnos and the divine goddess for the coming spring and for giving us hope for the future by producing new sprouts on Earth. Somehow i am satisfied with what i saw on my offerings. I included the spirit of my late mother in my prayers. No icons, statues, images or anything in front of me. Just me and my sister with some meditation music and a couple of fruits to symbolize the coming of spring, my crystal necklace in a bowl with salted water for charging place outside my house under the fullmoon, pasta with olive oil and tuna (no meat), and a bottle of red wine ( just a common one, others are not in my range of budget ), and a cool talk with my lovely sister. Afterwards, a hot tea at 2:00am. 

     I only hope what my sister and i shared during imbolc is also felt and celebrated by others. If that happens it would have been so nice. Just thinking of nothing but the good the future holds and what the next morning has to offer. 

     Sometimes i try to talk to a few on what i believe in and how it liberates me. There are so many reactions i have seen. But most of them are fear and doubt on the kind of person i am since i follow Wicca and it's out of the so-called norms in the society. I wouldn't mind being judged. There are times i get hurt by the connotations of what Wicca is and how most people perceive it as evil and demonic in nature. But nowadays i take it a bit lighter as i learn at the same time. I'm starting to realize that it's only natural for people to fear the unknown and to criticize what they have no knowledge.

     Today i am still studying about Wicca and i guess i will not stop doing so because it is a life long process and i also believe that my whole life is not enough to use in studying and learning this belief. But i don't mind. I love doing it. It gives me purpose. It's like Imbolc. A start of a new everything. A hope for a bright future. So mote it be.

     Merry Imboolc everyone!!! Blessed be...

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