B is for Brighid and her Flamekeepers
I became one of Brighid’s flamekeepers back in 1998 when I took a class in something called Haedery taught by a woman who was also taught Scottish ways by her grandmother. We clicked immediately and while she is no longer in my life I will be eternally grateful for the things I learned from her and this is a big one.
She had been doing this for some time and gave us our first “Brighided” candles meaning they had been lit from a candle that had travelled from Kildare and kindled in the flame there at the shrine and well. I think most of us that agreed to do it are still doing it every 20 days. We at one time were the largest group of flamekeepers in one place outside of Ireland. The Haeders that stayed all eventually became part of the Temple of Isis/Los Angeles and most of us have our own Iseums and some of us also have formed a Grove in the Druid Clan of Dana which are the Fellowship of Isis’s Druid contingent. If you are part of the Fellowship you can have any patron/personal deity and quite a few of us are following the Gaels who are our foremothers. So it’s been 14 or 15 years of following Brighid and some of the other goddesses, keeping her flame, taking prayer requests and walking in her footsteps.
The Irish sometimes describe her as being blond but for some reason across the Irish sea in Scotland she has red hair. I like to think she has dark red hair like mine even though I started out as a toe head blond.
She is still the one I sing to when I need help and along with the Knot of Isis, it’s a prayer that is close to my heart.
Fetaim lasrach soilse’
Thoir cuireadh sinne
Ris a’ bheatha
Brighid, Sublime woman
Long may you burn bright!
You give us the invitation
To life everlasting.
When I was ordained I was given a bottle of waters collected from all over the world including the well in Kildare and the well in Glastonbury. I still have the bottle and quite a lot is left that I have used to anoint people who need blessing and we have used it in our coven’s Candlemas ritual every year as the blessing to enter Circle.
My flameshift is the 3rd shift and I’m in the Elder Cell –Cill Trom, and my shift starts Sunday night just before her holiday.
Should you like to join the website below is open to all. There are Women only cells, Co-ed Cells and Men only cells. So you can join the one that calls to you however you identify. There is a wealth of information, stories, prayers and other things dedicated to Brighid on the site.
I just started reading a book I’ve had for ages: The Rites of Brigid – Goddess and Saint by Sean o Duinn, osb. If you want more info I suggest you get a copy of Carmina Gadelica – Hymns and Incantations collected by Alexander Carmichael.