Greetings from AHA,
We hope the New Year has begun on a positive note. By now the hectic pace of the holidays has settled and life has returned to some semblance of normalcy. Here we are in February and life is beginning to stir again though it may not always feel that way! The Celtic festival of Imbolc or Imbolg marks the rebirth of nature and fertility. Bulbs are beginning to shoot up through the cold hard ground and new lambs are born – the cycle of new life returns to the earth.
Imbolc celebrates the gradual increasing of warmth and light, bringing nature to life again. Nature is re-awakening from her winter rest. We may spot crocus or snowdrops in walks outside or notice small buds beginning to appear on the trees – a simple sign that sparks hope within us and reminds us the world is full of fresh opportunities.
It is a time of initiation, purification and inspiration. For making new plans and planting the seeds of your projects, hopes and dreams that you wish to manifest during the year. Now is a good time to renew and review any New Year resolutions. Imbolc is a good time to begin Spring cleaning. By getting rid of unwanted clutter we are preparing for the new season physically and mentally making space for a fresh start.
It is a favorite time of the year for me for many reasons but the main one is that this particular time is dedicated to the energy of the Goddess Brigit or Bride as she in known in Scotland. She is a goddess of poetry, smithcraft and healing. She is a keeper of the sacred flame, that divine spark and creative spirit that resides within each of us. One of the meanings of Imbolc is “fire in the belly” That fire is the spark of life, of inspiration, of plans and projects all the things that we would bring forth into the world.
“in the belly” makes me think about women and our close connection to our own bellies. It’s often a complicated relationship. We love the round pregnant bellies, but with a little extra padding around the middle and the pressure to have a flat stomach we often don’t appreciate that part of us. Our stomachs digest our food, but also our emotions – so the belly becomes the source of our life energy and our well being. We need to take care of it and make peace with it so we make peace with our whole bodies.
Here is an idea to work with the energy of seed potential and sending loving energy to our bodies. Making a massage oil for our belly.
Using some essential oils made from seeds – particular suggestions would be Coriander (which promotes creativity, optimism and motivation) and some Cardamom (warming, stimulating) and then some Fennel (helps to remove emotional & mental blocks)
- Take a pure carrier oil – jojoba, almond oil or coconut oil and begin to experiment:
- 2 oz. of the carrier oil
- add: 6 drops of Coriander
- add: 6 drops of Cardamom
- add: 4 drops of Fennel
- Depending on your personal preference you can add a drop or two more of one or each.
- Mix the oils together and put in a small glass container.
Use it with mindfulness. Take a few minutes to sit down and focus on your breath. If you have a usual meditation or Reiki routine, you can include the belly rub in your ritual.
Slowly massage the belly oil on your stomach, while focusing on the aroma. Send loving thoughts to your belly for all it does. And consider what fire or inspiration in your belly you are grateful for and wish to bring forth in the year to come.
Some other ideas for Imbolc:
- Take a small quartz crystal or crystal chip in your hand. Choose a goal ou wish to accomplish this year, think about it, see yourself with that goal completed and how you feel. Then place the crystal with the seed or bulb and plant it in the earth.
- Immerse yourself in a salt bath or scrub your body with a salt scrub – and with intention chat “all that outworn is washed away and I am renewed as of today”
- Write a poem! Don’t make it stressful or feel it has to be fantastic and perfect – just indulge your creativity and imagination.
Energetically, the timing couldn’t be better for initiating projects, exploring new paths, and planting those seeds of your hopes and dreams. Astrologically all the planets are moving in a forward direction until March. Momentum is the word for this month. Use the energy to start to put those wheels in motion. It is no wonder that the the February Full Moon is called the “Quickening” moon. What projects would you like to see quicken this month?
I would be remiss to end this newsletter without a word about Valentines Day. February has long been associated with love and sexuality. The Romans dedicated this time to the Goddess Juno Februata and the festival of Lupercalia a time of erotic games. A polar opposite, the Christians made it a a feast day of St; Valentine, who was martyred/executed the minute he received a declaration of love from his sweetheart! Two extremes to the same day.
My point being – make this day whatever you wish it to be. It’s about love. So spend it with someone you love, or doing something you love, honoring someone you love, sharing the love with animals, the earth, its peoples. Galantine’s Day is one of my favorites – spend it with your gal pals. Whatever you do – spread a little more love in the world.
May Brigit’s mantle protect you
And bring spring to your heart