Slí an Druí Journal Imbolg 2014 (excerpts only)
Welcome to edition eight of the Slí an Druí Journal. Our ancestors saw Imbolg as the time between winter and spring when new life was all around. Imbolg means 'in the bag' and from this we can see pregnant sheep (lamb in the bag/womb), grain stored in waxed leather bags for planting when the Earth warms up enough, buds on trees beginning to swell and an overall shift from hibernation to preparation for growth. This is the time of the Goddess Brigid, who is still honoured today (albeit as a catholic saint) with schoolchildren making straw or rush crosses.
Imbolg 2014 Report
I celebrated Imbolg on Thursday 3oth of January in the Hemp Hall on my own. For me this is the exact time ..........................................................................................................
Celtic Druids Imbolg
Imbolg means “in the bag” but is understood as “in the belly” and refers to the coming of milk and the sheep carrying lambs. It is also the availability of lamb meat during the cold season. Many celebrate Imbolg today without awareness to its significance in the past because they are disconnected. Today, our refrigerators protect us and a multitude of shops are open 24/7... But just imagine that there are no shops and its windy, dark, wet and cold and the only foods you have are the seeds for the next years crop / harvest and all the time you know that there are a multitude of young lambs “in the belly” and the importance of this cross-quarter day become real.
Celtic Druid's Spring Equinox
"Anois teacht an Earraigh, beidh an lá dúl chun shíneadh'
Now with the springtime - The days will grow longer.
Equinox means "equal night" and this happens because the sun is positioned above the equator and at this time of the year - day and night are about equal in length all over the world and the days get longer than the nights. But this year ... I've revised our timing for the Spring Equinox by looking deeper into when the day and night are closest to being equal. This means not using astronomy / astrology but instead simply seeing the day and night length are at the most balanced. This year its on Monday March 17th that there is 12 hours 1 minute and 45 seconds of daylight and thats as close as it gets to exact balance with the night. We will attend at Rathra to watch the Sun set into Croagh Crom - over 60 miles 100 km away.
The story of Fionn and Bran agus Sceolan
The great hero, hunter and warrior of Irish mythology is Fionn McCoole and he has two famous hounds - Bran agus Sceolan. As you may guess these are no ordinary dogs but incredible huge beasts with human ancestry and magical awareness. In the old legends Bran is described as a ferocious, white-breasted, sleek-haunched hound; standing as high as mid-chest of a full grown man; fiery, deep black eyes that seemed to swim in sockets of blood. Sceolan was described as slightly smaller than the black beast, small headed, having eyes of a dragon, the claws of a wolf, the vigour of a lion; and the venom of a serpent. These two Chimeras are monstrous creatures with parts from multiple animals with human parents yet ultimately they teach us kindness because they would not kill the deer that was once a woman called Sadbh who became the wife of Fionn!
Birth of Bran
A short story excerpt by Lady Gregory from Gods and Fighting Men, a book we recommend to all parents to read to children - THIS, now, is the story of the birth of Bran. Finn’s mother, Muirne, came one time to Almhuin, and she brought with her Tuiren, her sister. And lollan Eachtach, a chief man of the Fianna of Ulster, was at Almhuin at the time, and he gave his love to Tuiren, and asked her in marriage, and brought her to his own house. But before they went, Finn made him gave his word be would bring her back safe and sound if ever he asked for her, and he bade him find sureties for himself among the chief men of the Fianna.
10.000 new tree spirits to care for!
Here at the Celtic Druid Temple we are delighted and thrilled to be the guardians for over 10,000 new tree spirits. Many of these trees are gifts from friends around the country, some are cuttings from Willow trees we got from friends in Clones, some are wedding presents, birthday presents, some we bought and some are volunteers self seeded from the trees already growing here when we got this farm, but we've just had 9,000 new broad leaf trees professionally planted and they all need caring for! This is an opportunity for you to be part of re-establishing the link between people and forests as we need help hand weeding these trees in Summer 2014 so we can prevent chemical spraying for weed control.
The Cauldron of Poesy
trans - Erynn Rowan Laurie 1995/1998
Moí coire coir goiriath
gor rond n-ír Día dam a dúile dnemrib;
dliucht sóir sóerna broinn
bélrae mbil brúchtas úad.
My perfect cauldron of warming
has been taken by the Gods from the mysterious abyss of the elements;
a perfect truth that ennobles from the center of being,
that pours forth a terrifying stream of speech.
Celtic Druid Temple Almanac 2014
Four graphics with our activities detailed for 2014 and a back to back print off paper Almanac - hope you can attend some of these events! We have produced an almanac for 2014 containing dates of our planned activities and a brief description of who we are and what we do so people can copy and print it out to have handy. Please print on both sides of a single page, fold in half and then fold again in half - it should fit in your pocket, wallet or purse