“Blessed Brighid burning bright
Lead us from the darkest night
Triple Goddess of new life
Shine your flame on us tonight
Perpetual flame of love and light…”
–Kellianna, Brigid’s Flame...
PaganSquare is a community blog space where Pagans can discuss topics relevant to the life and spiritual practice of all Pagans.
Have you ever noticed that none of us perceive time in a consistent way? An hour at the dentist seems to take forever, while an hour-long massage seems to slip by in an instant.
For me, the past few months have flown by. Since my last post I was excited to be a headliner at Florida Pagan Gathering Samhain 2016, and to be named “Tarosophist of the Year” for 2016 by the Tarosophy Tarot Association....
Imbolc tends to be associated with snowdrops – which is reasonable enough because they do reliably turn up at this time. We don’t talk about blackthorn much, but for me it is the tree of the festival. Blackthorn can come into flower around this time of year, too (in my experience) and it’s an ogham tree as well.
The Woodland Trust site has blackthorn down as flowering between March and April so it may be in part about where you live. The Woodland Trust covers the whole of the UK, and I’ve never lived further north than the Midlands. There are significant regional differences. I’ve always seen blackthorn as one of the first flowerings in the year. There was a roadside tree on the way to my Midlands ritual place that always came into flower around the time of Imbolc rituals, which gave me the association. At present I’ve got a wild plum locally that flowers very early and is likely to open any day now. It points to the way in which tree events can be very specific and local, depending on microclimates, and the unpredictable nature of trees....
It seems like winter juster arrived, but already it’s on its way out. Today is Imbolc, the Celtic festival celebrating the end of winter and the beginning of spring (though most of us don’t regard that to happen until the Equinox). It’s also approximated by St Brighid’s Day, Candlemas, Groundhog Day, Setsubun in Japan, and the Spring Festival in China (better known in the West as the Chinese New Year’s). Basically, a time to celebrate impending the return of warmth and the sun after months of cold and snow.
As usual we’ve gathered all of our related stories as well as those we found across the web that we thought were interesting. We hope you enjoy and have an enjoyable month and a half on the way to the equinox!
I am usually visiting family over the New Year. Not being at home during the 'calendar flip' can make those first few days of the year similar to the “intercalary days” of ancient times. The first few days of the year take on this otherworldly tinge. Ungrounded in the mundane work and routine of every-day, but loaded with cultural baggage, including the pressure to set a template for the coming year, the first few days of the year have their own magick, they are both malleable and prophetic.
Beginning in the middle of the Sun's transit through Capricorn, the first days of the New Year are a clean slate, in every sense of the word. As a Cardinal sign, Capricorn signals the beginning of the Winter season, and as an Earth sign, ruled by practical, austere Saturn, Capricorn's focus is on managing resources most effectively. Its mantra is “discipline is remembering what you want,” emphasizing that desire and emotion are best served when ruled by will....
My seed catalogs have started to arrive in the mail. The glossy summer-bright photos are inspiring and awe-inducing (Moon and Stars Melons! Nebraska Wedding Tomatoes!), and also humbling. Each packet of seeds contains worlds of potential What in this universe holds more promise than a seed? Each tiny package is a life in stasis. Every seed on this planet contains knowledge: knowledge of self, knowledge of its needs and its future. A seed knows not to grow until it has been placed in the proper environment. Each seed knows when to allow itself to break apart and become something else, stretching toward the sun's light and the future.
Every seed is aware of its purpose. It knows why it was placed in this world and what it needs to do to achieve that purpose. We are not so fortunate. We lack the inner instruction manual that seeds possess. All too often we feel as though we are floundering, struggling to break out of our confines and grow into the Self we are meant to be....
Welcome to the first of the 2017 Tarot Blog Hops. This is our seventh Imbolc hop. We began in 2012 with the question, "How can I be a better candle?" This hop was begun as a way to highlight the online Tarot community's commitment to working together rather than against one another. I'm so very proud that we are still doing this! Every six weeks, any where from 10-30 of us gather to share our thoughts on one topic. We love new bloggers too so please come join us. We are a Facebook-based group that maintains a very tight focus on the topic.
I'm the wrangler for this particular hop. The topic is "How can I best foster the energy of the Aces in my life?"