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An Imbolc Meditation: Light and Shadow of Soul Work

Posted on:  Jan 30, 2021 @ 10:00 Posted in:  Featured, Sabbats

Imbolc Guided Meditation Excerpt from The Path of She Book of Sabbats.

On the eve of Imbolc, light a candle in a private corner of your home. Bring your face close and let its flame dance its teasing warmth across your skin. Track your breath, slow, slow in and slow, slow out, relaxing ever deeper into the physical movements of your body with breath.

Between the worlds at Imbolc, the Goddess Brigid waits for us, stoking Her sacred flame and tending Her holy forge, where the old is re-cast into the new.

Imagine your inner light and heat becoming stronger with every breath, just as the sun is becoming stronger with every day. Let this inner heat thaw the frozen-over places inside of you that hold your stagnation and resistance to change and new growth.

When you feel present and centered in your body, focus on the candle’s golden light; use its shimmering energies to shift your awareness to the place between the worlds where Brigid’s sacred flame burns brilliant and strong. Put your hands on your belly and sense the heat of Her fire infusing the seeds of your beauty and wounding that are stirring at this turning time, calling you to new growth and possibilities. Let these potent forces draw you to Her doorstep.

Now close your eyes and imagine yourself at the threshold of Brigid’s realm. There is a thick door in front of you, with a smooth-worn handle and a key poised within its lock. Place one hand on the handle and the other on the key. Take a few breaths to anchor once more in your center and to bring your complete attention to this moment.

Feel your hunger to shift your life in new, positive directions. Feel any pain or resistance that this hunger may trigger. Know that when you open this door and cross its threshold to stand before Brigid, you are choosing to heal and grow, bringing these light and shadow energies with you.

Make your next movements deliberate and conscious, a shifting from the winter-like stagnation of what you know into the spring-filled possibilities of what can be. Then turn the key, step through the door and find yourself fully present in Brigid’s sacred realm.

Imagine Brigid welcoming you with open arms. Take in the details of Her radiant beauty and the powerful energies of Her holy well and sacred flame. Orient yourself within Her realm and its potent magic that can make your life anew.

Ask Brigid to share with you Her gifts of inspiration and wisdom, and to help you better understand the seeds of your beauty and wounding that are driving your pathwork at this time.

Brigid leads you to Her scrying bowl, filled with the waters of Her holy well and lit by Her sacred flame. Merge with the flickering dance of flames across the flat, still surface of the water. Open your inner landscape to these heady powers, knowing that they can reveal the hidden knowledge within you and share healing visions of where your journey of soul will lead you next.

As Brigid’s holy waters divulge these secrets and visions, enter deeply into the stories woven into the seeds of your beauty and wounding. Information and insights can come to you in many ways: through visual imagery, a voice that speaks to you, or body sensations and energies. Fully engage whatever shows up, in whatever form. Take your time, ask questions, dive deep.

Decipher how these seeds manifest in your everyday life and the wide world around you, and how they inform your journey of soul. Seek out the parts of your Deep Self and life story that are calling for healing and reclaiming. Gather what insights you can on how to best tend these seeds and follow their lead in your emerging pathwork of new beginnings.

Notice on the wall behind you that your shadow shimmies and shifts in sync with the flames of Brigid’s forge. Light and shadow are partners in your soul work. What you have lost, your shadow remembers; what is most precious within you, your shadow protects; what you need to tend and heal, your shadow will bring to your attention. You cannot reclaim your beauty without your wounding, nor your joy without your pain.

Widen your heart to your shadow-side, accepting that everything you are and everything you have experienced, the good and the bad, the joyful and the painful, have brought you to this moment and serve as the raw materials of your greater becoming. Then turn your awareness back to Brigid’s scrying bowl. Ask it to reveal anything else you need to know at this time, including your imperfections, limitations and resistance that are the shadow reflections of your hunger for new beginnings.

These too are essential pieces of your journey of soul. When your scrying magic feels complete, step back from its potent energies and turn to face Brigid. You have a choice to make before you leave Her presence; you must decide, given all that you have been shown this Imbolc eve, whether you are ready to tend these stirring seeds within you, with your shadow-side as partner and ally.

Know that your yes is a vow that goes both ways; your pledge is to do the hard work of reclaiming a life of soul, and Brigid’s promise is to love and support you at every step on your way.

Speak your vow to Brigid; name the pathwork and new beginnings that you are ready to commit to in the coming Spring season. Feel the power of your vow amplified by the magic of Brigid’s forge, where the old is made anew. And sense the greater powers and mysteries, beyond the walls of Brigid’s realm, that heed your vow and align themselves in service of your greater becoming.

For a few more minutes, gaze into Brigid’s eyes; drink in the details of Her exquisite features and fill yourself up with the love that permeates every ounce of Her being. Then bring your time with Brigid to a close. Listen to Her final words of guidance and wisdom. Share your gratitude and love, and bid Her farewell. Then use your breath to bring yourself back into your physical body and waking reality.

Open your eyes and take in the dance of shadow and candlelight in the room. Feel this mirror dance inside of you, and in the world around you. There is no light without shadow, good without bad, nor joy without pain. In the coming months, as you nurture and grow the new beginnings you have committed yourself to this Imbolc eve, remember this essential, inescapable truth: you are woven of all these things, and of mysteries unknown still sleeping in the shadow realm, waiting for their quickening moment to return to the light.

Celebrate Imbolc

with the Path of She Book of Sabbats

Buy now at the Path Store

Artist: Sulamith Wulfing

Imbolc: A Dance of Light and Shadow

Posted on:  Jan 29, 2021 @ 10:00 Posted in:  Sabbats

Imbolc Excerpt from The Path of She Book of Sabbats.

At Imbolc, profound change is stirring on your journey of soul. As the seasons turn from Winter into Spring, the returning powers of light and life activate your longing for new beginnings, and coax you to leave behind the stasis of what you know to seek out new possibilities.

Winter gives way to Spring at Imbolc. Light and shadow dance together as you tend the seeds of your beauty and wounding that can transform your life.

The Earth is waking at Imbolc, casting off Her winter cloak of cold and darkness, and prodding the natural realm to stir from its long rest at the first signs of Spring. Nothing seems certain at this time of year. Nature can be in the throes of snow and frigid temperatures, or it can offer up warm, sunny days that entice brave snowdrops to rise from the still-frozen soil. No matter how hard Winter tries to hang on, the days get steadily longer and warmer, and Nature opens itself once more to the life-giving powers of the strengthening sun.

Groundhog Day is the secular custom that coincides with Imbolc. The groundhog is a weather diviner; according to tradition, if the groundhog emerges from its hole and see its shadow then Winter will be digging in for another six weeks. If it doesn’t see its shadow, Spring is near at hand. Regardless of the groundhog’s predictions, Imbolc is a time when we turn our mind and intentions toward the seeds we would like to plant in the Spring, both in our gardens and in our life.

Like the natural realm, what has been dormant within you hungers for new growth. And like the groundhog, light and shadow are both part of your dance with the shifting, seasonal energies.

At Imbolc, you turn your mind to the seeds that hold the next pieces of your pathwork, sourced from the beauty and wounding of your Deep Self and life story. As you draw these seeds into the light of your conscious awareness and engagement, you will also encounter the shadow-side of the wounded, denied parts of your life and our world.

To journey on the Path of She is to accept and work with your whole/holy nature and life story, both the light and shadow, and beauty and wounding. You cannot truly change yourself or your outer world without showing up to the naked, raw truth of who you are and what you’ve experienced.

Self-awareness , self-acceptance and compassion are essential components of the hard work of healing and transforming your life.

You need not be alone in this momentous task. Brigid is a mighty Goddess, with powers of healing and inspiration, who comes to us through Celtic mythology. Some tales of Brigid tell how She came to the Earth when all was blackness and chaos, and placed Her mantle around the planet, transforming it into a place of beauty. Brigid has endured through the turning times of humanity, both as Goddess and as Saint, and Imbolc is Her festival day.

Brigid draws us to Her doorstep at Imbolc. She has so many gifts to offer us: the light of Her sacred flame to lead us out of the darkness; the healing, inspirational waters of Her holy well to mend our hurts and guide our journey; and the transformational powers of Her forge where the old can be recast into the new.

These wondrous things Brigid will grant us, but we must seek Her out in Her realm between the worlds, and consciously choose to embrace Her healing ways. And we must make a vow, a soul commitment, to tend the seeds of our beauty and wounding, and to follow where they lead us on our journey of soul. She can offer us healing, wisdom and support, but only we can do the hard work of transforming our life and mending our world.

Celebrate Imbolc

with the Path of She Book of Sabbats.

Buy now at the Path Store.

Photo Credit: Aleksandar Kyng on Unsplash

An Imbolc Mystery: Brigid and the Making of Vows

Posted on:  Jan 26, 2019 @ 21:00 Posted in:  Sabbats

Imbolc Excerpt from the Path of She Books of Sabbats.

In the velvet darkness between the worlds, a welcoming light shines bright and steady. Here Brigid tends Her holy well and sacred flame, offering up their life-transforming magic that grants the gifts of healing, inspiration and wisdom for those who seek Her guidance. She does not call us to Her side, for She knows that we will find Her when the time is ripe.

At Imbolc, Brigid calls you to Her magical realm to seek the hidden knowledge and healing visions that await you at this time of Winter thawing into Spring.

As Nature shifts from the dark dormancy of Winter to the life-inducing powers of the strengthening sun that herald the approach of Spring, our desire for the spring of new possibilities and the end of the long winter of our soul drives us to Brigid’s doorstep. Our mind turns to the seeds of our beauty and wounding, sourced from our Deep Self and life story, that hold the next pieces of our pathwork, and our soul turns to Brigid’s loving, gracious presence and Her tremendous powers that can make our life anew.

Trust these powerful hungers and impulses stirring within you. Trust that life-transforming change is possible, and that Brigid can help you in this essential soul work. Trust that your shining inner light is kin to Her shining light, and in the spirit of this kinship you will find your way to Her realm between the worlds.

When you reach the threshold of Brigid’s realm, you’ll discover a thick oak door with an ancient key, greened by age and the elements the key of conscious choice. Your soul desire has led you to Brigid, now you must consciously choose to turn the key, knowing that to stand before this mighty, generous Goddess is to commit yourself to Her healing ways. And once you have made this commitment, it is not easily unmade; when you open the door that connects you to Brigid, it can never truly be shut again.

As you step over the threshold, Brigid welcomes you with a warm, captivating smile, Her cheeks flushed slightly with the heat of Her forge. She is breathtaking to behold, with long, fiery red tresses, creamy white skin, and a tall, slender form draped in a dark green mantle. Though Her beauty is as bright as the flames She tends, it is the palpable presence of Her love and kindness that is your strongest impression of Her.

Both the flames and Brigid’s radiance seep through your flesh, swiftly thawing the frozen places in your heart. When you look into Her startling green eyes, you see the life you are longing for reflected in their soulful depth, and Her desire to help make your dreams come true. You do not need to speak these things to Brigid, She already knows you, inside and out, deep and true.

“Let us see what hidden knowledge and healing visions await you at this time of Imbolc,” She says.

With Her long, expressive fingers, Brigid beckons you to a shallow, black stone bowl filled with the waters of Her holy well. She directs your gaze to its still, flat surface, illuminated by the flickering lights of Her sacred flame.

Images arise in a swift procession from the close-up and intimate of your life to the wide-scope of the greater world. Brigid’s scrying waters do not spare you from the ugly and the painful. You are shown the hurt places inside of you and their symbiotic expression in your outer existence, and then, broader still, to the same patterns that exist in human society.

“These images tell the one story of the seed of your wounding,” Brigid says, “What is inside is outside, and what is outside is inside; your inner world reveals itself in your outer existence, and your personal life is both trapped within the strictures of collective reality and you help re-create this reality with your day-to-day choices and actions.”

Brigid passes Her hands over the basin’s surface and new images appear, this time offering a mélange of the beautiful and inspiring, again drawing both on your personal life and the greater world.  Some of the images you recognize from your current existence and others feel achingly familiar, like a longed-for possibility that has yet to take form.

“These images tell the one story of the seed of your beauty,” Brigid says, “Just as with your wounding, what is inside and outside both inform and infuse the other. By the beauty and goodness of individuals, the beauty and goodness of human society emerges.”

With a swirling motion of her fingertips, Brigid activates Her holy water’s visionary magic one last time. The previous images blend and merge, entwining the stories of your beauty and wounding, both in their personal and collective manifestations. And you see, from the depth of your being, that your beauty and wounding are mirrors of the same thing; there is really only one story, the story of your life, woven from all that you are, and all that you’ve ever experienced, defined and constrained within the matrix of collective reality.

Together you step away from the scrying bowl. Brigid turns to face you and says, “Everything has a place and purpose, even the most painful and challenging of these images. Life, with its joys and sorrows, is the crucible of your spiritual healing and evolution. You would not be who you are now, standing here with me on the cusp of your greater becoming, within having gone through these trials and experiences. Great beauty and power are forged from great wounding and suffering, tempered by a wisdom, love and compassion that a life fully embraced, in its light and shadow, can grant you.

“My scrying bowl has revealed to you the seeds and stories that are the makings of the new beginning ready to emerge from within you. They are the raw materials that will drive the healing pathwork that is before you now.

“You must tend these seeds in preparation for your springtime of new growth. Your life is their soil, your love their water, and your conscious awareness their sunshine. With proper care, they will show you the way of your healing and transformation, and your path forward to the life of soul you are longing for.

“Are you ready to take this next crucial step on your journey of soul? Will you commit yourself to the sacred task of tending your seeds of beauty and wounding, and letting them guide you in your pathwork?”

Think hard before you answer Brigid, for this is a special, powerful kind of commitment — a vow spoken before Her sacred forge, where the old is made anew. She will hold you to this commitment, and your life will be forever changed.

With a simple “yes”, you bind yourself to Brigid.

“So it is chosen, so it will be,” She says.

Three times Her hammer strikes Her anvil, hard steel against hard steel, ringing your vow outward into the listening Universe.

Then Brigid kisses your brow and presses Her palm against your solar plexus. A warm, swirling energy passes between you, and you sense the visions of Her scrying waters now alive and brewing in your belly center. She smiles one last smile, filling the space and your heart with Her radiance, and then She is gone.

Yet Her kiss remains, a token that She will never leave your side. The visioning magic of this Imbolc eve will bring you the healing, inspiration and wisdom you need to tend your seeds of beauty and wounding.  As you tend your seeds, discovering and embracing their place and purpose on your journey of soul, Brigid tends them with you, coaxing out their healing and creative impulses. And as you shift and grow, bringing positive change to your life and the greater world, Her joy shines down on you, filling you up with the bright flame of Her nourishing love.

Celebrate Imbolc

with the Path of She Book of Sabbats. 

Buy now at the Path Store.

 

Photo Credit: Christian Holzinger on Unsplash