The celebration of Imbolc (Feb 1-2) is a time of new beginnings, of welcoming the first light of spring and of honouring the Celtic goddess Brighid. It also marks the center point of the dark half of the year. Interestingly, the name ‘Britain’ is thought by some to be a derivation of Brighid’s name. Britain was named for an ancient Celtic tribe, the Brigantes, who worshipped Brighid or Brigit and were the largest Celtic tribe to occupy the British Isles in pre-Roman times.
The name Brighid itself means ‘High One’ in the ancient Celtic language, referring to her aspect as a solar deity. She is the patron Goddess of poets, healers and blacksmiths, and patron of the traditionally womanly arts of midwifery, dyeing, weaving and brewing, the guardian of children and farm animals, particularly cows. She is also said to be patroness to the Druids in her aspects of poetry, healing and prophecy. Peoples affection for this Goddess was so powerful that when the Christian faith arrived in Celtic lands the Christian church had to adopt her as a Saint...
Imbolc in the Celtic seasonal calendar marked the beginning of the lambing season and signaled the beginning of Spring and the stirrings of new life. It is 'Feile Brighde' the 'quickening of the year'. The original word Imbolg means 'in the belly', and therein you have the underlying energy. All is pregnant and expectant - and only just visible if at all, like the gentle curve of a 'just-showing' pregnancy. Imbolc was also called Oimealg by the Druids, from the Gaelic word "oimelc" which means 'ewes milk'. As the Maiden Goddess of this time & because of these reasons of fertility, Brighid was symbolised by White flowers, the Stars and the Milky Way
Blessed Imbolc all!