The energies associated with February, named for Frebrua, mother of Mars, go deep in the Goddess tradition.
The pre-roman Celtic goddess Brigid is one of the goddess’ most important faces, still celebrated in Ireland today—although assimilated by the church as “St. Brigid”.
Brigid’s gifts cover a wide spectrum, and require a mindful look between and beyond the lines of history to understand how virginity and fertility could be celebrated in one goddess, and how she could be both a warrior and a benign, compassionate healer.
Thousands of years ago, female sexuality was treasured and administered in sacred rites. Forty days after the Winter Solstice, the Sun showed its first tangible signs of return, and the milk of ewes began to flow, and men could approach women in hopes of being accepted as lovers.
What do the goddess roots of February have to do with the stars? Long ago, Aquarius wasn’t just a cup-bearer for the gods. As Geraldine Thorsten points out in her book, The Goddess in Your Stars, Aquarius’ sacred vessel “represented the sheltering womb and nurturing breasts of the Great Mother”. The nurturance was not only physical, but also consisted of wisdom. Thus the passion of Aquarius is tempered by the chastity of knowledge and self-authority.
Known as St. Brigit’s Day, Candlemas or El Día de la Virgen de la Candelaria, February 2 marks an ancient invocation of this light and purity, during which taper candles were lighted and in some places worn as a crown, so that one would shine with this higher wisdom and chaste radiance.