Imbloc (Candlemass, Imblog, Imbole) – February 2nd

Pronounced: EE-Molc
Incense: Rosemary, Frankincense, Myrrh, Cinnamon
Decorations: Corn Dolly, Besom, Spring Flowers
Colours: White, Orange, Red

This holiday is also known as Candlemas, or Brigid’s (pronounced BREED) Day. One of the 4 Celtic “Fire Festivals. Commemorates the changing of the Goddess from the Crone to the Maiden. Celebrates the first signs of Spring. Also called “Imbolc” (the old Celtic name).

This is the seasonal change where the first signs of spring and the return of the sun are noted, i.e. the first sprouting of leaves, the sprouting of the Crocus flowers etc. In other words, it is the festival commemorating the successful passing of winter and the beginning of the agricultural year. This Festival also marks the transition point of the threefold Goddess energies from those of Crone to Maiden.

To read the rest of this fastening article please click on this link: http://www.thewhitegoddess.co.uk/the_wheel_of_the_year/imbolc.asp

It is the day that we celebrate the passing of Winter and make way for Spring. It is the day we honour the rebirth of the Sun and we may visualize the baby sun nursing from the Goddess’s breast. It is also a day of celebrating the Celtic Goddess Brigid. Brigid is the Goddess of Poetry, Healing, Smithcraft, and Midwifery. If you can make it with your hands, Brigid rules it. She is a triple Goddess, so we honour her in all her aspects. This is a time for communing with her, and tending the lighting of her sacred flame. At this time of year, Wiccans will light multiple candles, white for Brigid, for the god usually yellow or red, to remind us of the passing of winter and the entrance into spring, the time of the Sun. This is a good time for initiations, be they into covens or self-initiations.

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Lammas History: Welcoming the Harvest

The Beginning of the Harvest:

At Lammas, also called Lughnasadh, the hot days of August are upon us, much of the earth is dry and parched, but we still know that the bright reds and yellows of the harvest season are just around the corner. Apples are beginning to ripen in the trees, our summer vegetables have been picked, corn is tall and green, waiting for us to come gather the bounty of the crop fields. Now is the time to begin reaping what we have sown, and gathering up the first harvests of grain, wheat, oats, and more.

This holiday can be celebrated either as a way to honor the god Lugh, or as a celebration of the harvest.

Celebrating Grain in Ancient Cultures:

Grain has held a place of importance in civilization back nearly to the beginning of time. Grain became associated with the cycle of death and rebirth. The Sumerian god Tammuz was slain and his lover Ishtar grieved so heartily that nature stopped producing. Ishtar mourned Tammuz, and followed him to the Underworld to bring him back, similar to the story of Demeter and Persephone.

In Greek legend, the grain god was Adonis. Two goddesses, Aphrodite and Persephone, battled for his love. To end the fighting, Zeus ordered Adonis to spend six months with Persephone in the Underworld, and the rest with Aphrodite.

A Feast of Bread:

In early Ireland, it was a bad idea to harvest your grain any time before Lammas — it meant that the previous year’s harvest had run out early, and that was a serious failing in agricultural communities. However, on August 1, the first sheaves of grain were cut by the farmer, and by nightfall his wife had made the first loaves of bread of the season.

The word Lammas derives from the Old English phrase hlaf-maesse, which translates to loaf mass. In early Christian times, the first loaves of the season were blessed by the Church.

Honoring Lugh, the Skillful God:

In some Wiccan and modern Pagan traditions, Lammas is also a day of honoring Lugh, the Celtic craftsman god. He is a god of many skills, and was honored in various aspects by societies both in the British Isles and in Europe. Lughnasadh (pronounced Loo-NAS-ah) is still celebrated in many parts of the world today. Lugh’s influence appears in the names of several European towns.

Honoring the Past:

In our modern world, it’s often easy to forget the trials and tribulations our ancestors had to endure. For us, if we need a loaf of bread, we simply drive over to the local grocery store and buy a few bags of prepackaged bread. If we run out, it’s no big deal, we just go and get more. When our ancestors lived, hundreds and thousands of years ago, the harvesting and processing of grain was crucial. If crops were left in the fields too long, or the bread not baked in time, families could starve. Taking care of one’s crops meant the difference between life and death.

By celebrating Lammas as a harvest holiday, we honor our ancestors and the hard work they must have had to do in order to survive. This is a good time to give thanks for the abundance we have in our lives, and to be grateful for the food on our tables. Lammas is a time of transformation, of rebirth and new beginnings.

Symbols of the Season

The Wheel of the Year has turned once more, and you may feel like decorating your house accordingly. While you probably can’t find too many items marked as “Lammas decor” in your local discount store, there are a number of items you can use as decoration for this harvest holiday.

  • Sickles and scythes, as well as other symbols of harvesting
  • Grapes and vines
  • Dried grains — sheafs of wheat, bowls of oats, etc.
  • Corn dolls — you can make these easily using dried husks
  • Early fall vegetables, such as squashes and pumpkins
  • Late summer fruits, like apples, plums and peaches

Crafts, Song and Celebration

Because of its association with Lugh, the skilled god, Lammas (Lughnasadh) is also a time to celebrate talents and craftsmanship. It’s a traditional time of year for craft festivals, and for skilled artisans to peddle their wares. In medieval Europe, guilds would arrange for their members to set up booths around a village green, festooned with bright ribbons and fall colors. Perhaps this is why so many modern Renaissance Festivals begin around this time of year!

Lugh is also known in some traditions as the patron of bards and magicians. Now is a great time of year to work on honing your own talents. Learn a new craft, or get better at an old one. Put on a play, write a story or poem, take up a musical instrument, or sing a song. Whatever you choose to do, this is the right season for rebirth and renewal, so set August 1 as the day to share your new skill with your friends and family.

From: http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/LammasFolklore/a/Legends-And-Folklore-Of-Bread.htm

A Thought for Today

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A simple prayer th A even a young child could learn.I ask you to join me in saying it every night for one week starting tonight with whom ever you live with before going your separate ways for sleeping. If you live alone or for whatever reason you are alone at bedtime, all I have at night are my 2 doggy familiars because my husband is at work, still try this prayer out for a week. We will come together next Sunday, February 5th to what our experience with bring our housemates together to honor those Devine brings mentioned in this prayer. Just use the comment section below to tell us who will be partic

A Little about when Lady Beltane was a Novice

I was getting ready to post articles about Imbolc and Lammas but my Spirit Guides had a different idea of what I should post today.

I was asked by one of the Adept witches in our online coven to talk a little about my time as a newbie in a coven and what it was like on up to where I am today. So I will begin this journey of telling about my journey with my novices year and a day. Let me stress that all covens are different in how they treat newcomers and even established members. Some have very strict rules while others have seemingly no rules. So if you are interested in a specific coven make sure it is a good fit for you and how you want to study The Craft and you are a good fit for their group.

My instructors, as I did not consider them being mentors as we had no real personal relationship, were pretty different than how I mentor my novices. I was a novice about 40 years ago and a lot has changed. The coven I was in during the time I was a novice was Wicca not really any well know tradition just WIcca. First, of all, I was not allowed to attend any actual coven gatherings until I had studied for six months. My first six months of studies were basically reading different papers written by the elders in the coven and books they told me to read than doing written assignments for each thing I read. There were specific questions that pertained exactly to the papers or books I read and I had to basically do book reports for some of them. I was discouraged from reading anything that was not assigned reading. Secondly, my written assignments ranged from how to set up an altar to how to commune with animals (something I am still working on achieving today). I wrote nothing about spells, rituals or how to write and perform them, this was considered too advanced for a novice. I only had access to the oldest members of the coven one evening per week to call if I had a question about what I was working on that week. This made it very difficult at times for my studies to progress as fast as the coven or I would have liked. When I was finally allowed to attend coven gatherings I was not allowed to speak to anyone before the ritual started or during it. I was allowed to mingle with coven members after the ritual but not to ask questions about my studies unless I could get one of the elders aside where no one else could hear us. It was an extremely stressful year and a day for me to the point of me seriously thinking I was on the wrong spiritual and magickal path. I did make it through their novice training but when it came time to be brought into the coven as an adept I chose to try a different coven in a totally different town as I did not really want to run into any of the first coven’s members.

Please keep in mind my experiences were about 40 years ago and every coven is different in how it brings new members into it.Next time I Will talk a little about my Adept year and a day which was much more pleasant than the novice level. Not just because I knew more but because the coven was a lot more welcoming and caring.

Until then dear ones try to bring something magickal into your life every day thank will bring you happiness or joy or love or caring or comfort or whatever you need that day. Much love and many blessings from me to you my dear ones.

The Door Washing Charm

Imbolc Greetings from The Goddess & The Green Man.
Happy New Year to you all.  We’re not featuring any products this time.  Instead, here is a simple and effective charm, using items readily available in the home, for you to gently wash away that lovely, but now faded, energy of Yule. It’s time to get ready for the bright and hopeful energy of Imbolc and new beginnings!

The Door Washing Charm
To cleanse and lift the energy in your home

You will need:

3 drops of lemon essential oil or a teaspoon of natural lemon  juice
2 drops of lavender oil
Hot water
A white cloth
A bowl or bucket

Place your lemon oil or juice into your bowl and pour on hot water. When the water has cooled sufficiently stir well in a clockwise fashion. Then take your cloth and gently wipe your door starting in the centre and working outwards in a clockwise movement. Whilst doing this repeat three times  (either aloud or in your head):

“Happiness and calm be welcome inside. May peace and love here always reside.”

When you have done this wring your cloth out under running water, dry thoroughly and keep it for further cleansing.  Pour your water out safely outside. And feel the difference.

Copyright © 2017 The Goddess & The Green Man

https://www.goddessandgreenman.co.uk/

Lammas/Lughnasadh Rites & Rituals

Set Up Your Lammas Altar

August 1 is known as Lammas, or Lughnasadh (it’s February 1, if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere). This is a day to celebrate the beginnings of the harvest, when the grain and corn is gathered. It’s also a time, in some traditions, of honoring Lugh, the Celtic craftsman god. Here are some ideas for dressing up your altar for your Lammas (Lughnasadh) celebration! Setting Up Your Lammas Altar More »

The Sacred Feminine is many things. Most notably, it is an authority without unnecessary aggression, violence, or destruction.

I was able to witness the beauty and effectiveness of the Sacred Feminine this weekend in Washington DC as we marched for equal rights, the environment, human rights, and equal representation.
Hundreds of thousands of people stood shoulder to shoulder and marched together. We were all strangers, and yet somehow we felt like one big family and treated everyone with kindness.
We all had a different reason to be there. Some of the marchers are marginalized people fighting to have their issues recognized, native people and people of color looking to gain equality in our society.
Some marched because they believe that women should have the same rights as men in healthcare, careers, and more.

Some marched for Standing Rock and our rights to have clean fresh water. Others marched to express their dislike of the current and newly formed government administration. And more marched so that our Mother Earth would have a voice.

We all marched unity and individuality.

To read the rest of this uplifting story please click on this link: http://themagickkitchen.com/manifesting-sacred-feminine/