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Imbolc

February 1, 2018

Social media can be both a blessing and a curse. It opens up the possibility of connection, good and bad, across vast spaces and puts all sorts of information at our very fingertips. Too much unfiltered time on social media can leave me feeling desperate and depressed so I've learned to filter heavily and focus my attention in directions that help rather than hurt. And some days, Twitter's just the ticket. Consider this morning's tweet by British author Robert Macfarlane:

 

"Word of the day: “Imbolc” - in the Celtic calendar, the midpoint between winter solstice & spring equinox, marking the earth’s wakening from cold & start of lambing. Imbolc this year falls today, 1 February. Also known as Candlemas or Feile Brighde, “the quickening of the year”."

 

Just the other evening, as I admired the blue moon, I'd bemoaned to my husband the move away from "calendars" based on the seasons and cycles to arbitrary man-made calendars. For me, focusing on the man-made calendars breaks my felt-sense of connection to my environment. I feel adrift. And, in this bleak part of winter when it seems as though Spring will never arrive, reminders like Macfarlane's that the age-old natural cycles still flow are so helpful. I remember the winter solstice. I know the spring equinox is out there, somewhere. We're standing at the halfway point this very day and this halfway point has a name. Imbolc. 

 

We're halfway between flowers of ice and the flowers of the Forget-Me-Not and the Violet. The wheel turns, the cycles progress. The signs are there. Sometimes I just need to be reminded. 

 

 

 

 

 

© Karen Opp James. All rights reserved.

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