Candlemas, or Imbolc, involves celebration of banishing the winter and welcoming the spring. At the time of Candlemas, the newborn Sun God is seen as a small child nursing from his Mother. At this phase of the cycle, winter is swept away and new beginnings are nurtured. Some Wiccan groups favor this time of year for initiations into the Craft. It is traditional at Candlemas to light every lamp in the house for a few minutes in honor of the Sun's rebirth.
Other Names: Imbolg, Oimelc, Candlemas, Disting-tid, Feast of Brigid, Festival of Light, Feast of the Virgin, Festival of Milk, Anagantios, Feast Day of St. Blaize, St. Bridget's Day, Candlelaria
Meaning: Honor of the Virgin Goddess, First signs of Returning Light, Festival of Light
Lore: It is traditional upon Imbolc, at sunset or just after ritual, to light every lamp in the house — if only for a few minutes. Or, light candles in each room in honor of the Sun's rebirth. Alternately, light a kerosene lamp with a red chimney and place this in a prominent part of the home or in a window. If snow lies on the ground outside, walk in it for a moment, recalling the warmth of summer. With your projective hand, trace an image of the sun on the snow.
Deities: God and Goddess as Children, All Virgin Goddesses
Activities: Candle Lighting, Searching for Signs of Spring, Gathering Stones
Taboos: Cutting or Picking Plants
Colors: White, Yellow, Pink
Symbols: Candles, The Bride, Burrowing Animals, Grain Dolly, Sun Wheels
Animals: Robin, Burrowing Animals, Sheep, Lamb, Dragon, Deer
Stones: Turquoise, Amethyst
Plants: Evergreen, Willow, Rosemary, Clover, Dill
Food: Foods appropriate to eat on this day include those from the dairy, since Imbolc marks the festival of calving. Sour cream dishes are fine. Spicy and full-bodied foods in honor of the sun are equally attuned. Curries and all dishes made with peppers, onions, leeks, shallots, garlic, or chives are appropriate. Spiced wines and dishes containing raisins — all foods symbolic of the sun — are also traditional.
Ritual Oils: Jasmine, Apricot, Carnation, Sweet Pea, Neroli, Olive
Attunement Teas: (Individually or Blended) Chamomile, Red Clover, Rosemary, Blackberry
Goddesses: All Virgin Goddesses and All Flame Goddesses, such as Anu (Irish), Arachne (Greek), Arianhrod (Welsh), Athena (Greek), Blaize (Breton), Branwen (Manx-Welsh), Brigid/Brid (Irish), Brynhild (Teutonic), Gaia (Greek), Inanna (Sumerian), Kebehut (Egyptian), Lucina (Roman), Selene (Greek), Vesta (Roman)
Gods: All Dragon-Headed Gods and All Flame Gods, such as Braggi (Norse), Cupid/Eros (Greco-Roman), Pax (Roman)
SOURCES: Some info was taken from an unknown source; however, most info was found at The Wiccan Garden, as taken from The Sabbats: A New Approach to Living the Old Ways by Edain McCoy and Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner by Scott Cunningham.