Link: Joseph Campbell

Joseph Campbell

For St. Brigid’s Day, also known as Imbolc, traditionally celebrated on February 1:

“Brigit or Brig (Irish ‘brig’ – ‘power’; Welsh ‘bri’ – ‘renown’), the patroness of poetry and knowledge, represents another aspect of the goddess and was the Celtic Minerva named by Caesar. The popular cult of Saint Brigit, which carried her worship into Christian times, was represented in Kildare by a sacred fire that was not to be approached by any male and was watched daily by nineteen vestal virgins in turn, and on the twentieth day by the saint herself. Brigit, furthermore, was the giver of civilization. As Professor John A. MacCulloch remarks: ‘She must have originated in the period when the Celts worshipped goddesses rather than gods, and when knowledge––leechcraft, agriculture, inspiration––were women’s rather than men’s.’ ”

Joseph Campbell, “The Masks of God, Volume III: Creative Mythology” (Copyright © 1964 Joseph Campbell), p. 301