Friday, February 16, 2024

Brigit’s Surprise

 

Last night I came home from my trip to Ireland, where I had important time with friends and Brigit, and presented devotional poetry, song, and meditation at the Brigid of Faughart Festival as part of Brigid 1500. It was for me a profound and nourishing trip. I didn’t go out into the yard last night and I was busy inside till I went out just now to cut my month old fingernails. And this is what I saw.

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Brat Bhride Project — Portarlington Art Collective

 


Brat Bhride Community Creativity Project - Bringing People Together to Learn and Celebrate Tradition Together.


Our initiative will promote a revival of the Brat Bhride tradition across Ireland at a community level, using our creativity. Brigid has been recognised and awarded her own national holiday for 2023 and we want to commemorate that in our way in Portarlingon. The Brat Bhride tradition will bridge a gap between the generations, with older members of our community aware of this almost forgotten tradition in today’s Ireland recalling her healing and protective shawl.

Our Collective, alongside community groups will be coming together to upcycle and customise Brat Bhride scarves/shawls and we welcome all community involvement, as once you can pick up a needle and thread you can take part. We will be reusing old scarves and found materials, promoting sustainability in recycling of materials. 

We intend to bring together our groups in a shared environment and workspace to create and collaborate on our Brat Bhrides and talk together about activities and memories traditionally associated with St Brigid’s Day.

For more information follow us on social and if you want to get involved get in touch at portartcollective@gmail.com.


 

Brat Bhride Community Creativity Project
in Conjunction with Creative Ireland and Offaly County Council - starting 20th April





Images: “mo bhrat Bríd” (my Brigit shawl) - Brat Bhride Project — Portarlington Art Collective

Friday, February 09, 2024

St. Brigid Island, Antarctica

 





Oстров Св. Бригита (Bulgarian for "the Island of St. Brigitta"), known in the English speaking world as St. Brigid's Island, is a small island of the Archipelago of Antarctica, that thin arm you see unfurling from the main body of the land mass. It is 2.7 km long and 1.4 km wide, and is the largest in the Barcroft group of Biscoe Islands. It is uninhabited, and its icy surface area is 222 ha. The internet sources I've consulted point out that it is named after St. Brigid of Kildare as patron saint of scholars.

The peregrinatio* of Ireland, medieval holy people who set off in oarless coracles to wherever God took them, might have found this island a bit too hostile for their purposes, but it is still inspiring to realise how far afield her followers went, taking her with them. Shall we organise a retreat here???



* Thus, peregrinus, a word originally meaning stranger, came to be interpreted as referring to a pilgrim or an exile. Among the Irish, peregrinatio, the journey of the peregrinus, described a life-long exile for the sake of God. "Exiles from the Edge? The Irish Contexts of Peregrinatio" by Elva Johnston. Research Repository UCD.

Sources: St. Brigid Island Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia; first map from Mapcarta, second and third from Apple Maps, final two from Kiddle.


Wednesday, January 31, 2024

"Brigid of Faughart Festival 2022” - Video

 


A full length video on Brigid, Goddess and Saint and her birthplace, Faughart, which is near Dundalk, Co. Louth, Ireland. It was shot at the Imbolc 2022 online event at the Brigid of Faughart Festival.

Video found on Brigid of Faughart Festival site, here.


Video credits: Steve Larkin


Saturday, December 30, 2023

“This World and the Other – Magical Stories with the Saint and the Goddess, Brigit” - Reading & Meditation with Mael Brigde

 

 

[Sun Among Stars] reflects the long and deep journey that Mael Brigde has made with Brigit in her many guises … [Her] journey is a deeply embodied one, reflecting insights gleaned during her studies which have become a living part of her. She encourages readers/students to grasp this possibility for themselves as they engage with the material.
 
This work offers a portal into the mysteries of Brigit and the possibility of readers grounding her qualities of compassion, courage, love, wisdom and fearlessness in their own unique ways in their current lives.
 
Thank you for this important and comprehensive work.
 
Dolores T. Whelan, author of Ever Ancient, Ever New – Celtic Spirituality in the 21st Century, and co-founder of Brigid's Way Celtic Pilgrimage


(I stumbled across this endorsement for my book a couple of days ago. I had written Dolores asking for an endorsement when she didn’t know me at all, and I was blown away by her response. It was she who invited me to read at the festival — thus blowing me even further away than before. Thank you, Dolores!)

🔥

As mentioned, I will be in Dundalk, Ireland on 1 February, as part of the Brigid of Faughart Festival and Brigit 1500, reading and leading brief meditations.

I wrote much of A Brigit of Ireland Devotional - Sun Among Stars, because I wanted a book of poems and prayers to help me become grounded when I sat down to be with Brigit, something that would help me recall the connection I have with her and prompt me to contemplate the different sides of her. When I dip into the book, it is usually in such moments. I light a candle, meditate, offer songs and a poem or two.

I decided that this was the way I wanted to present them to the folk who gather with me in Dundalk. To start with a centering meditation, and to offer the stories of Brigit as part of a larger contemplation. I am even trying to rub some of the rust off of my voice box so I can sing the parts of the meditation I normally would in the privacy of my room.

If you are able to join us that night, you would be very welcome. Please feel free to say hello afterward.

🐦‍⬛ 

The event will be held at 6 PM at the County Museum on Jocelyn Street. Tickets are available through Eventbrite.

VenueCounty Museum Dundalk 8 Jocelyn St, Townparks, Dundalk 54°00′17″N 6°23′49″W


BookA Brigit of Ireland Devotional - Sun Among Stars by Mael Brigde




Image: festival banner with the words “Brigid of Faughart Festival - Celebrating Brigid, Celtic Goddess & Matron of Ireland.” On one end is a mandala of rings of water and fire and plants, with a four-armed Brigit’s cross in the centre and a white hand holding it up. On the right is a painting of a white woman, half goddess and half saint, with fire and water and other designs surrounding her.
💧