Sunday, February 14, 2016

Wheel of Wonder February 7 2016

January gone already?  The wheel keeps turning and now we've moved past Imbolc.  Imbolc, February 2 is a day of recognition for the multifaceted Irish Goddess Bridgit, some would say the Triune Goddess Bride.  Bridgit is often called the keeper of the sacred flame of inspiration, poetry, and spiritual transformation as well as the protector goddess of the newborn children, and the first maiden of spring whose influence in the people's lives grows stronger than the influence of the crone of winter, and this shows in the land with the warming of the weather and the beginning of the first early buds and sprouts coming out of the ground as we move into spring.  Imbolc is also observed as a good time to renew one's vows and intentions for the coming year.  As the Sun warms the world, more people leave their houses and have occasion to meet and greet other people and consider what sort of positive impacts they could have on one another's lives.

Shortly after Brigid's day is Valentine's day, on February 14th.  Originally know as Lupercalia, it was a three day festival from the 13th to the 15th of February.  Ancient Roman in origin, it celebrates the she-wolf goddess that nursed Romulus and Remus, the twin founders of Rome, before leaving them for a Shepard in the field so they could be taken care of and then go on to create the city of Rome.  It is also known as a day to celebrate Faunus (Roman Pan), horned god of forests, plains, and fields.  So not only can one honor Bridgit in February but the horned god  as well, if they are so inclined.  Lupercalia as a festival was preluded by a spring cleansing festival known as Februa, which is where the Romans got the name for February from.  During Lupercalia ceremonies were done to ward off evil spirits and assure fertility.

Valentine's day in modern times was redefined into a holiday of romantic love in the 14th century.  So I suppose, Male identifying and female identifying romantic love is a celebration of fertility in a way.  Perhaps these days celebration of any romantic love, unbiased by gender identification is the way of the day. But it is interesting to see the origins of the holiday prior to the mythic martyrdom of the people by name of Valentinus under the Roman Empire.

The pictures above:  Brighid is from the website spiritblogger's blog and the picture of Faunus comes from Pinterest