“Standing at the Threshold: Imbolc’s Invitation to Awaken and Prepare

"Standing at the Threshold: Imbolc's Invitation to Awaken and Prepare"

Imbolc, the Celtic festival celebrated around the beginning of February, marks the midpoint between the winter solstice and Spring equinox. It signifies the stirring of life beneath the surface, a subtle yet powerful transition from the dormancy of winter to the promise of spring. Like the Earth, we find ourselves at a threshold, on the brink of transformation and awakening. In this blog post, we explore the symbolism of the threshold during Imbolc—the last days of winter—and how we can prepare for the upcoming season of spring by integrating the spiritual and psychological insights gained during the introspective winter phase.

Brigid: Celtic Goddess of Imbolc  Brigid, often referred to as the Triple Goddess of Poetry, Healing, and Smithcraft, held a prominent place in Celtic mythology. She was adored for her nurturing nature, symbolizing the life-giving and transformative forces of the impending spring. Brigid’s association with Imbolc was particularly strong, as she was considered the guardian of the season’s awakening, bringing forth the first signs of life from the dormant winter earth.

The Christianisation if Ireland turned Brigid from a pagan goddess to a Christian saint. Saint Brigid, also known as Bridget or Bride, became associated with healing, hospitality, and the protection of livestock.

Imbolc Traditions: During Imbolc, devotees would honor Brigid through rituals involving fire and light, symbolizing the increasing strength of the sun. The weaving of Brigid’s Cross, a distinctive four-armed cross made from rushes, was a ritualistic act that symbolized protection, blessings, and the turning of the seasons.

Brigid's Cross Tarot Spread for Imbolc:

 Suggestions for how to conduct the reading for yourself:

  • Hold the deck in your hands and take a few deep breaths to center yourself.
  • Focus on your intention for the Winter Solstice spread, envisioning the guidance and insights you seek.
  • Shuffle the cards using a method that feels natural to you. You can shuffle in a standard way or try other techniques like overhand shuffling or spreading the cards on a surface and mixing them with your hands.
  • Once you feel a sense of connection with the deck and your intention, stop shuffling.
  • Cut the deck or split it into three piles. Choose the top card from each pile, forming your three-card spread.
  • Place the cards in the form of  Brigid’s cross (see image above).
  • Take a moment to reflect on each card individually and then consider the relationships between them.
  • Note the images, symbols, and feelings the cards evoke.
  • Trust your intuition in interpreting the messages they hold.
  • Record your insights in your journal.

Remember, tarot is a personal and intuitive practice. Enjoy the process of exploration and self-discovery. Trust your instincts, and allow the cards to speak to you in a way that resonates with your own spiritual journey.

Center (Brigid’s Heart): The central card represents the core energy of your current state, drawing inspiration from Brigid’s heart—the nurturing and transformative aspect of the Celtic goddess.

Arms (Winter Lessons):

  1. Left Arm: This card represents the lessons and insights gained during the winter season leading up to Imbolc. What wisdom has the introspective winter phase bestowed upon you?
  2. Right Arm: Explore the challenges and obstacles faced during winter. What aspects of your journey have tested your resilience and strength?

Crossroads (Imbolc Energies):

  1. Top: This card signifies the potential and opportunities presented by Imbolc. What energies are emerging as you stand at the threshold between winter and spring?
  2. Bottom: Delve into the underlying influences shaping your journey during this transitional period. What unseen forces guide your path?

Outer Circle (Spring Awakening):

  1. Top Left: This card represents the aspects of yourself ready for rebirth and growth as spring approaches. What parts of your being are ready to blossom?
  2. Top Right: Explore the actions or changes needed to nurture the seeds of transformation. What steps can you take to facilitate the awakening within?
  3. Bottom Left: Reflect on the emotional and intuitive aspects of your journey. What emotional insights will guide you through this awakening process?
  4. Bottom Right: Consider the practical and material elements required for your personal rebirth. How can you ground your aspirations in the physical realm?

Weaving the Cross (Integration): The card in the center (Brigid’s Heart) returns as a focal point. This card represents the integration of the lessons learned, the energies of Imbolc, and the potential for spring awakening. How can you weave together the insights gained, the energies present, and your readiness for transformation to create a harmonious and integrated self?

Conclusion: As you lay out the cards in the shape of Brigid’s Cross, consider the interconnectedness of each position and how they collectively guide you through the threshold of Imbolc. May the wisdom of Brigid and the symbolism of the cross inspire a deeper understanding of your journey as you navigate the transition from winter’s embrace to the burgeoning promise of spring.

"The World" card from my Inner Journey Tarot Deck

Integration Exercise: Seeds of Awakening

This exercise is designed to help individuals integrate the wisdom of Imbolc into their everyday lives during the transition from dormant winter to the initial stages of awakening. By focusing on symbolic seeds, participants will reflect on their intentions for personal growth and plant the seeds of positive change in their daily routines.

Materials Needed:

  1. Journal or notebook
  2. Pen
  3. Seeds (can be actual seeds or symbolic representations, such as small pebble stones,  shells, crystal tumble stones or beads)


  1. Quiet Reflection:

    • Find a quiet and comfortable space where you won’t be disturbed.
    • Take a few deep breaths to center yourself and enter a reflective state.
  2. Contemplate Winter’s Wisdom:

    • Begin by reflecting on the lessons and insights gained during the winter season. What aspects of your life have been in hibernation, and what have you learned from this introspective phase?
  3. Identify Areas for Growth:

    • Consider the areas of your life where you wish to see growth and positive change. These can be related to personal development, relationships, career, or any other aspect that feels significant at this time.
  4. Symbolic Seeds:

    • Take the seeds (or symbolic representations) in your hand. Visualize them as the potential for positive change and growth in your life.
    • Assign specific intentions or goals to each seed. For example, if one seed represents better communication, another could symbolize self-care or a new project.
  5. Planting the Seeds:

    • Open your journal and create a page dedicated to “Seeds of Awakening.”
    • Write down each intention or goal associated with the symbolic seeds. Be specific about what you want to cultivate.
  6. Daily Ritual:

    • Incorporate a brief daily ritual where you revisit your “Seeds of Awakening” journal page.
    • Visualize these seeds taking root and growing into vibrant, healthy plants. Imagine how they will positively impact your life.
  7. Action Steps:

    • Break down each intention into actionable steps. What small, consistent actions can you take to nurture these seeds of change?
  8. Reflection and Adjustment:

    • Periodically review your “Seeds of Awakening” journal page. Reflect on your progress and make any necessary adjustments to your goals and action steps.
  9. Celebration:

    • As the seasons progress, celebrate the growth and positive changes that manifest in your life. Acknowledge the impact of nurturing these symbolic seeds.

Intuitive Collage Project

Objective: This collage project is designed to tap into your intuitive and creative energies, allowing you to visually explore and represent the wisdom of Imbolc and the transition from winter’s dormancy to the first stages of awakening. By creating an intuitive collage, you’ll give form to your aspirations and intentions, using symbolic elements to represent the seeds of positive change in your life.

Materials Needed:

  1. Magazines, old books, or printed images
  2. Scissors
  3. Glue or Mod Podge
  4. Large piece of paper or canvas
  5. Markers, colored pencils, or crayons
  6. Symbolic items (optional, such as small stones, fabric, or trinkets)


  1. Gather Materials and Set the Mood:

    • Collect magazines, images, and any other materials that resonate with you. Set the mood with calming music or in a space that allows for focused creativity.
  2. Reflective Contemplation:

    • Before diving into the collage, take a few moments for reflective contemplation. Close your eyes, breathe deeply, and consider the intentions and areas of growth you identified in the Seeds of Awakening exercise.
  3. Intuitive Image Selection:

    • Begin flipping through the magazines or printed images. Trust your intuition to guide you toward images that resonate with the feelings and aspirations associated with your Seeds of Awakening.
  4. Cut and Arrange:

    • Cut out the images that speak to you and arrange them on your large paper or canvas. Allow your intuition to guide the placement of each image, creating a visual narrative of your intentions.
  5. Symbolic Elements:

    • Integrate symbolic elements into your collage. Consider adding the symbolic seeds (stones, beads, or small objects) to represent the growth and positive change you wish to cultivate.
  6. Collage as Expression:

    • Use the collage as a form of self-expression. Don’t worry about making it perfect—focus on capturing the essence of your intentions and the energy of Imbolc.
  7. Text and Affirmations:

    • If you feel inclined, add text, affirmations, or words that resonate with your intentions. This can be done through writing or by cutting out words from magazines.
  8. Color and Enhance:

    • Use markers, colored pencils, or crayons to enhance and color elements of your collage. Allow the colors to further convey the emotions and energy associated with your Seeds of Awakening.
  9. Personalize and Reflect:

    • If you have personal items or symbols that hold significance, consider incorporating them into your collage. Personal touches add depth and authenticity to your creation.
  10. Reflect and Embrace:

    • Take a moment to reflect on your finished collage. What emotions and insights arise? Embrace the symbolism and personal connections within your creation.

Closing: This intuitive collage project provides a tangible and visual representation of the Seeds of Awakening in your life. As you observe your collage, let it serve as a reminder of the internal energy you are cultivating. Display it in a place where you can revisit and connect with the intentions and symbolism, fostering a continued sense of growth and awakening in alignment with the spirit of Imbolc.

Imbolc invites us to embrace the threshold with open hearts and minds, acknowledging the lessons of winter and preparing for the transformative journey ahead. Through tarot insights, intuitive collage creation, and a mindful ritual, we can intentionally cross this threshold, awakening the light within and stepping into the blossoming potential of the approaching spring.

May this season of transition bring you growth, renewal, and the gentle unfolding of your own inner springtime renewal.

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