Faith, Holiday, Nature

The Beginning of February is a Big Deal

Well, it is. The seasonal Ju-Ju doesn’t happen on New Years – that’s the time for dreaming and wishing.  The seasonal Ju-Ju is February!!! The time from sunset on February 1 to sunset on February 2  a monumental current washes through our lives. Each of the many holidays, the ancient and the Holy acknowledge this seismic shift-  Spring is coming, light is coming, and life is returning.

Use these days  to light up the you that is deep inside.

Most of us just think Valentines Day when we think of February, but do you know where that day came from?During this month the ancients prepared for planting and we aren’t so different- think of the seed catalogues that are lining our mailboxes.  During this month the ancients began to plan for livestock births (it was too expensive to feed baby animals during the cold months, so February was the time to let your livestock hook-up for spring summer births)….hence the earliest beginnings of Valentines Day.  No, really.  In expectation of a fertile future, the Pagan holiday was referred to as Imbolc (or Im-Bolg, meaning around the belly) and is February 1. Aah, L’Amour, L’Amour.

Also on February 1 is the Feast Day for St. Brigid. The saint, Brigid of Kildare founded the first Convent in Ireland.  It is said that she brought the “Light” of Christ to the Celts.    February 2 is the candle ritual is also known as Candlemas, to honour the Christ as the “Light of the World” (John 8:12)  when Christ was brought to the Temple.   Candles are brought to many churches for the blessing and remembrance of the “Light” wicked in our beings.

Before St. Brigid was Brigid was a fire and fertility goddess and her celebration was February 2. Bonfires were lit as a ritual to bless the livestock and upcoming planting.

According to Jewish tradition, women go through a purification ceremony 40 days after giving birth to a son.  Once Christianity adopted December 25 has the official birth day of Christ, 40 days later is February 2, hence the Feast of Purification of Mary.  To honour Her Purification, Lent was often started February 4, as a symbolic rite of personal purification.

No matter how you slice it, February, especially the first and second, is a big spiritual and action month.  Four holidays sit at it’s beginning to remind us that the grey in the sky and in our hearts is only temporary and that it’s time to kickstart our souls.

How it applies to us today is that by February we know which New Year’s Resolutions are possible and which should be trashed.

This is the month to set those serious resolutions in motion. Start working on your garden, be it metaphorical or in the ground. If your weight loss goals can’t be done on your own but you are really serious, now is the time to join a gym, go to Weight-Watchers or get a Beachbody.com coach.  If you want to get organised but just haven’t been able to get traction, now is the time to take stock and make a plan that works.  Or let those goals go for another time.

Oh yeah, and a word about Lent.  In the world of balance, we need to give up something to get something. While Lent no longer starts on February 4, this time of year lends itself to its precepts. Whether you are Catholic or not, this year think of what you can give up in order to get.  If you’re trying to get healthy, give up watching TV for 30 minutes in the evening and take a walk.   Give up sugar, to gain a smaller waist line.  Give up buying stuff. Give up a bag of stuff every day and give that stuff to charities.  Your sacrifice should be in line with the seeds of desire that you’re planting.

Yup, this month is a big deal.  Light a candle, thank God for God, be mindful of your dreams, and use these  beginning days to never give up on them.

As always,

Beth

What are you planting ?

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