Imbolc: Rituals, Recipes & Lore for Brighid’s Day is the final book in the eight book Sabbats series from Llewellyn. It follows the same format as the other seven, with defined sections that lead through fantastic ways to look at the celebration.

Old Ways educate us in terms of what Winter meant to the ancients. It gives us a brief overview of how the Celtic, Roman, Native American, Egyptian, and Asian cultures interacted with nature in this time of the year.

New Ways discusses the Celtic goddess Brighid is celebrated in modern times. It looks at other celebrations around Imbolc, namely Groundhog Day, Valentine’s Day, and Mardi Gras. There’s a listing of things that you can do to put more energy out in conjunction with the Sabbat, and it adds a section of candle burning etiquette.

Spells and Divination starts off with a Brighid candle blessing, then moves on to Empowerment of the Milk Moon, adds another candle blessing, and ends with a Goddess in the Air Divination.

Recipes and Crafts teaches us how to make yogurt “cheese”, butter, soda bread, and fortune cookies. For the crafts section, we get Brighid’s Cross, Imbolc incense, dipped candles, candle dressing, and corn dollies.

Prayers and Incantations offer Blessings for New Projects, Prayers for Healing both the body and the mind/heart/soul, Opening to New Possibilities, Prophecies of Faunus, and a discussion of Chinese red envelopes.

Rituals of Celebration guide us through a solitary ritual (The Fire Seed), a ritual for couples (New/Renewed Love), and a group ritual (Uncoiling the Dragon). The book, as always, ends with a solid list of correspondences, a large suggested reading list, and a strong bibliography.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this series. Is it perfect? No. My biggest criticism of this book is that I felt that the author didn't really stretch himself to show multiple sides of the Sabbat. It's VERY Celtic centered, and there are so many more aspect to Imbolc. There are brief moments of not-Celtic, but for the most part, it's All Brighid, All The Time, and that leaves a lot of other paths out. Is it a strong addition to a magical library? Oh my yes. I would recommend these books to anyone who is new to the Craft as well as older hands on the path.

Author: Carl F. Neal
Llewellyn Books, 2015
205 pages

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