Imbolc season is upon us marking the point of mid-winter. Nature is slowly awaking; days are getting longer, and we finally see the return of the Sun. If you are looking for a ways to re connect to this ancient festival of fire, here are few tips.
Whether you are celebrating Imbolc or Slavic version Gromnica (I celebrate both since I do live in England), both holidays have very much in common. According to the traditions both celebrations starting on the eve of 1st of February till 2nd of February and are centred around Goddess worship, lightning fire, cleansing and blessing springs.
In Celtic mythology Imbolc is dedicated to Brigid, goddess of poetry, healing, magic and midwifery whereas the in Poland it was dedicated to the Goddess of hunt, plants and healing Dziewanna.
1. Make your own candle.
Since this holiday is about celebration of fire, you can make your own blessed candle. Candles were made for protection against evil eye, spirits, bad luck and misfortune. Sometimes they were just lit on special occasion or taken around house.
If you cannot make your own candle, don’t worry we got you. We have candles in stock that you can purchase here or your can use tea light.
Take your candle cleanse it first with smoke and then hold in your palms, set your intentions for your candle. Take your favourite herbs and add into your candle. You can use bay leaf to grant wishes, rosemary for protections and cleansing, rue for protection or white or yellow flowers that symbolize sun. I usually sprinkle herbs around the candle if you use tea light candle or coat I the candle with pinch of herbs and olive oil.
Once you are ready light the candle in safe fire proof container and dispose the wax afterwards. Please don’t put too much dried herbs on your candle as it may burn uncontrollably.
2. Make Imbolc/Gromnica Altar.
Altars doesn’t have to be big or elaborate. Simple shelf corner or window sill is sufficient to make your own altar. Make sure the space is cleaned from dust and cleansed with smoke. Place your favourite things that symbolize Spring, like white and yellow candles, flowers, pictures of the Goddess, garden seeds that you will be planting this year and special cloth that you like.
There is no rules how the altar should look like so be guided by your own imagination.
- Bless your garden seeds.
This ritual is absolutely my favourite one. Since this is celebration of early signs of Spring, you can bless your garden seeds that you will be planting this year. Just place your veg and herbs seeds on the altar and set your intentions. You can make dried herbs and salt ring and place them in the middle, imaging how beautifully they will grow in spring.
- Go for a walk-in nature.
Walk in nature is great to cleanse from stagnant energies, to ground and to re energize yourself. Spend some time outdoors, next to rivers and tress or visit scared wells/springs. During this time wells and springs were thought to have healing capabilities so you can use the water to bless your home or any items that are special to you. Do not drink collect water from unknown sources. Only spring water can be stored for use.
- Throw a dinner party, bake, or make Brigid Cross.
There are also other ways to celebrate Imbolc and one of them is to make Brigid Cross or Corn Dolly. These are traditional Celtic origin and I think they are beautiful. You can also throw a dinner part or make dishes/deserts made from milk (vegan or non-vegan is your choice).
However, you want to celebrate this day is completely up to you. There are no rules to follow per say but if you want to connect more with traditions of these festivals here are some resources for you. I hope this post inspired you to make your own Imbolc/Gromnica rituals or added into existing ones.