Today February 2nd sees the celebration of Imbolc and fittingly enough, the weather is absolutely pants. No, the sun isn’t shining, but the rain is teeming down instead…thank goodness for Second Life then, allowing Pagans from all across the world to meet and celebrate the festival from the confines of their warm and dry homes.
Does celebrating a festival in world make it any less important? Nope, I don’t think so. Isn’t it the point that you are gathering with like-minded individuals, and that by making the effort you’re making it extra special? In fact, you could go as far as saying that such gatherings are all the more potent for the partcipants converge from all over the globe , all focused on the same intent…
How best to celebrate it then? Well I do know that ‘The Sacred Cauldron’ has prepared a sacred space and are holding an Imbolc ritual at 7pm SLT tonight. Be prompt! If you’re late you will NOT be allowed into the circle. ( You will be allowed to stand outside and watch) All are welcome, regardless of chosen path, and participants are asked to have prepared a notecard bearing a negative trait for banishment within the cauldron during the rite. Unfortunately, I’m working tonight so I cannot participate, but I’m sure that HPS Lillith Tammas will do a wonderful job.
If, like me, you cannot attend then why not do something by yourself in-world? If you have your own land this is easy to do, and making it even easier is this splendid altar from ‘The Picky Pagan‘ by Dixie Berliner, located at Witches Island. If you look a little further down this page you’ll note that I mentioned her work in my post about The Artemis Tavern, but since then she’s had a change around at her stores and the COMPLETE altar set that you see in this picture is just L$175! ( Previously she was offering the altar on it’s own at L$100, you had to buy the extras) Even better; you just rez and it’s ready..it’s about 44 prims but if you are prim-limited do what I do, de-rez a few items until after you’ve finished using the altar.I love the fact that she’s used the traditional colours of yellow and white for the candles, with white flowers and holly leaves in a bowl to be burned ( representing the passing of the Holly King) You’ll also see bread on the altar, and a Bridie Doll ( After Brigid,the virgin goddess who brings new life to the earth. She is known as Bride in Scotland) She is laid in her bed of woven wheat, ready to awaken..just like the Earth in the Northern hemisphere, which is on the brink of bursting into life. Once you’ve got your altar and if you’re stuck for ideas what to do, why not try this? ( Note, I’ve just discovered that if you click the altar it presents you with a beautiful Imbolc ritual poem, discovered that during my own working and it added a really lovely element to the proceedings)
Stand before your altar and consider what you want to achieve in 2010. Imbolc is a time for fertile thoughts and because it is associated with sacred fire, it’s a time to let the flame of inspiration lick your chops and stimulate new ideas. New beginnings peeps!
On your desk, beside your PC at dusk, light a tea light and dedicate it to the Celtic fire Goddess. This is going to represent new light penetrating the wintry darkness…If you want to burn some incense, some Sage would be good (this is a great t ime for smudging and cleansing, but that’s a tad more involved) . You can use this chant, taken from ‘The Cyber Spellbook’ By Sirona Knight and Patricia Telesco, as you light the flame (It’s a nice easy one)
“Bridget, Bridget, Brightest Flame, Bridget, Bridget, Sacred Name”.
Moving in-world I’ll have a cauldron beside my altar, where I will deposit a notecard with all the negative traits that I want to get rid of. I’ll also place a white candle upon the altar (I’m going to use one of the scripted L$99 candles from ‘Bell & Broom’ that I blogged yesterday for this) By the time my short ritual is over I’ll be starting my real life night-shift, but I’ll be mindful that my wee virtual candle is still alight…a reassuring thought. It was traditional to leave candles burning overnight buit that’s not really safe for me in a house of five cats and a naughty dog. However you celebrate it, enjoy the celebration!
(If you’re feeling inspired and need some further ideas, why not check out the amazing virtual resource that is the ‘Internet Book Of Shadows’ for further information? It’s a fabulous resource!)