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How We Voted Imbolc off the Island

By Sunweaver

A few years ago, the group I worship with underwent a major transformation. We all realized we weren’t Wiccan and that following the Wiccan wheel of the year was a bit ridiculous for us. We did a radical thing and gave ourselves permission to celebrate those holidays and observances that were meaningful to us over a system that didn’t ping our collective feeling of communing with the divine. Culturally, that’s not easy for a Judeo-Hellenic-Christo-Roman group with a smidge of California Buddhism whose members were all trained as Wiccan clergy and whose regional community was mainly comprised of old-school Wiccans. There are only four of us and it doesn’t break down neatly into one Jew-Witch, one Hellenic, one Christo-pagan, and one Roman. It’s more complicated than that. We each connect with the divine in ways that can be defined by some or all of these terms and you wouldn’t think this is a combo that works very well, but it does. It makes holidays really interesting.

The first thing we did was to evaluate whether or not any of the Wiccan holidays worked for us. We kept Beltaine and Samhain more or less intact, but the first to go was Imbolc. It just didn’t do it for us and never had. The Superbowl was more meaningful to us than Imbolc and I’m not just being flippant here. Watching the Superbowl is as much a ritual as any, even if there’s no formalized cast a circle, light the candles, call the quarters thing. I could even make a theological argument along Romano-Hellenic lines about sacred contests, but I won’t get into it just now. Needless to say, it’s part of our “wheel of the year,” if you will. It’s important.

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