As goddess of the forge or smithy, Brigit is the patroness of metalworking and other crafts. Her element is fire, the fire of passion and inspiration, and her celebration, February 2nd, includes the lighting of hearth fires and candles.
As goddess of the well, her element is water, and she signals the arrival of the waters of spring, of snow thaw and rain. Through the element of water, Brigit is the patroness of healers, and has many healing springs and wells dedicated to her throughout the British Isles. Water is also associated with psychic ability, music, and poetry.
As goddess of poetry including bardic lore, she is also patroness of storytellers, balladeers, singers, composers, musicians, particularly harpers, and historians.
Both water and flame are primary elements for divination for the Celts, so Brigit was also considered goddess of seers and prophets, those who can “see” images in the flame or still water.
Water and flame are also both necessary for shaping and tempering metal (think swords). Imagine the intense heat necessary to soften or melt metal and the water necessary to cool it so it holds its shape. Can you hear the steam hissing up? Tempering is an important part of the creative process too, and why Brigit is an ideal goddess and patroness for creatives.
Creativity requires the heat of inspiration and ideas. The work and sweat of hammering that idea into form. The will and commitment to keep at it.
AND, creativity needs the cooling waters of dreams, of visioning, of intuition and flow and love.
Often, creatives feel more comfortable in one element of creativity than another. If fire is your element, you may love the production and marketing aspect of creativity, but with only fire, the work may lack depth or significance, and a body of work may burn out too quickly.
If your element is water, you enjoy going with the flow of the idea, seeing where the work leads, working only when it feels good to you, trusting solely in your intuition, but without the heat of fire and will, you may flounder when the work becomes too big or deadlines loom.
For the work to have strength, to be truly tempered in order to be out in the world, the creative process requires movement move back and forth between the heat of Brigit’s forge and the cooling waters of her well.
Creativity needs the fire that drives the determination to create, complete, and launch.
Creativity needs the water that flows with the process, diving deep into the vision, then floating to the surface to be of service to the community.
Brigit is also considered a goddess of high places, bestowing perspective and the opportunity to see the big picture on your creativity.
Even though it is a few days past her holiday of Candlemas, here is a ritual you can do to honor Brigit and to grow and strengthen your creativity, to temper it.
Gather three bright pennies in honor of Brigit’s three aspects. Find a small pretty bowl and fill it with melted snow, water from a stream or even tap water. Also gather a candle (preferably white or red in color), a small piece of cloth and a ribbon or string.
Light the candle and place it next to the bowl of water. As you gaze at Brigit’s flame, hold the pennies in your hands and say aloud three wishes for your creative work or projects. Drop each penny into the water after each wish. (Did you know that dropping pennies into pools and fountains comes from honoring Brigit?)
Think about how you will move back and forth from fire to water, from will to desire, in order to birth, grow, and strengthen your creativity.
Then remove the pennies from the water and wrap them in a small piece of cloth, red or green or white, and tie the bundle up. Keep it near where you work as a reminder to temper your creativity and to continue to honor Brigit.
As your work grows and is released into the world, release those pennies, leaving them some place for someone else to find and be tempered by Brigit.
May Brigit bless all your creative work.