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Hail to Brigid on Imbolc, Brigid, mistress of the elements, nomad, giant, goddess, priestess, nomad, saint, Fae… Brigid is a woman of many titles and many names. Many stories are told about her origins, for some she is Celtic, for some she is Christian, by all she is respected, loved and worshipped.

She represents multiple aspects of the divine feminine and it is almost as if she purposely refuses to be put in a box, confusing the minds of those who wish to limit her abilities, diminish her strength, claim her for their own or label her. And so, as mankind created an increasingly polarised world, Brigid became a shapeshifter, effortlessly and seamlessly transitioning from goddess, to priestess, to abbess and in a more recent future, back to goddess again. She is a bridge builder, focussing on the similarities, rather than the differences, bringing different peoples, cultures and beliefs together as one.

This unique ability allowed her to travel across the centuries, the epitome of endurance, refusing to let cultural or religious persecution dim her sparkle and stubbornly staying alive in the hearts and consciousness of the Celtic lands. So much so that Britain owes her name to Brigid, as does Brittany in the north of France.

Brigid means “bright one” or “fiery arrow”, a very fitting name for a torchbearer carrying ancestral wisdom and ancient traditions into the current day and age, nourishing them until they can once again take root and flourish. In that way, Brigid is equally a beacon of hope, teaching us to be resilient and helping us to keep the faith, whatever the circumstances, all throughout the winters of our lives. She teaches us to rely on the fire within and to nourish it, to keep our strength and focus on what is important to our soul, instead of wasting our fire in futile battles.

Brigid is a triple fire goddess, representing the three sacred skills of the fire element: as the goddess of poetry she takes on the aspect of the muse, lighting the inspiration of artists, as the goddess of smiths’ craft she takes on the aspect of the alchemist, igniting the fires of transformation and as the goddess of healing she embodies the mother goddess transferring divine light to humanity. Her spirit lives on in the souls of people who create with fire and passion, bards and storytellers that awaken the divine light in people, poets that sing the beauty of the world and healers that heal by the grace of their sacred heart.

Brigid is invoked by lighting candles or fires in her honour and prayers in her honour are uttered at the lighting of the hearth, a sacred place in Celtic homes, literally the heart of the home. In recent times, her cult grows in numbers yet again and a perpetual flame that had been ablaze in her honour for centuries in the town of Kildare (tended to in pre-Christian times by druid priestesses and then continued on by Christian nuns) until it was put out by Henry VIII, has once again been lit in 1993, signalling that it was time for Brigid to shed the veils of the past and step into our current day and age to guide us to unity and peace through divine inspiration once again.

 


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