Bridget by Caroline Gully Lir

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Bridget


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Bridget is celebrated at Imbolc and the north east of the wheel of Britannia. Bridget, Bride, Bridie and Brighde are the names of this beloved ancient Irish Goddess.

Here she is honoured on Her feast day, (still kept today by the Brigadine nuns, who tend Her flame, in Kildare), in Her maiden aspect.

She appears walking out of the fire on a cold Imbolc night, February 2nd. For She is a fire Goddess. The fire of inspiration is Hers. Ancient Bards carried branches with silver bells in honour of Her. All poetry, all inspiration is sacred to Her. Her fire also manifests in our hearths, which sustain, warm and protect us. Indeed, in parts of these Isles the ashes of the hearth are still raked over at Imbolc, and maidens eagerly interpret any marks left on the smooth surface as omens concerning love and marriage. Bridget is the Goddess of smithcraft, the fire of the forge is one of transformation, alchemy and healing, and as such she is a powerful healing Goddess.

She walks out of the flames, with Her White Rod, with which She strikes the hard ground to awaken the first stirrings of life in the dark earth. Around Her rod twines sacred snake, or serpent, which comes out of hibernation at Imbolc. The snake is another ancient symbol of regeneration and healing.

Bridget glides towards us with Her serene swans on Her sacred spring. She wears Her beautiful white gown. “Brides” today still wear Bridget’s beautiful dress, as each “groom” marries this aspect of the Goddess. Around Her waist is the Silver Girdle of Healing. Extending behind Her are beautiful Swan wings, for gentle Bridget is the Swan maiden of legend.

Her wolves, wild protective and loyal pad silently behind Her, on this cold, crystalline Imbolc morn. Snowdrops appear at Her feet as Her rod strikes the hard ground, and Her Grail of innocence and trust, nestles on the snow.

Bridgets animals are the swan, snake, cow and wolf. Her tree is the willow. Her symbols are the Grael, Spindle and spinning wheel. Her colour is white.

Hail and Welcome, Bridget, Swan Maiden. Goddess of inspiration, Poetry and Smithcraft. Bring us healing and the joy of new beginnings.