The Fire in the Darkness
Iwos Brigantiâ is a very important holiday for Sepânioi Rotî as it honours Brigantiâ, a major dêuâ (goddess) in our bessus (custom/practice). It is a celebration of light in darkness and of hospitality at a time of great struggle. It’s a time for self-care, care of others, reflection, and creative endeavors. Unattested, this holiday draws inspiration from shared personal gnosis, neo-pagan fire festivals, Senobessus Segomarî, and is a great starting point for new Gaulish Polytheists.
Gregorian: Feb 1st (Northern Hemisphere) or August 1st (Southern Hemisphere).
Luni–solar: The second new moon after the winter solstice.
Coligny: 1st of Anagantios (new moon/fall start) or 23rd of Equos (first quarter/spring start)
With the winter solstice behind us, we are now at the winter thermistice – the coldest time of year. In an agrarian society, it’s a time to take stock of our resources, to harvest trees for firewood, to finish the hides from the fall hunt, and to sit close by the fire as we bring beauty into our world through craft and bardic arts.
In the cosmic calendar of Sepânioi Rotî, it’s when Brigantiâ is winning her last battles against the anguipeds, causing the fiercest cold winds to blow as they are banished to the lowest pits of dumnos. We pray for her safe return to our world, and light flames in her honour so that she can find her way back to her hilltops.
Since this is a harsh time of year, the celebrations are more muted. It’s a time of year that is difficult for those with nowhere to turn, people who need the help of their community to make it to the next summer. Rather than feasting we give food and shelter, or keep the hearth warm through baking and cooking. We light candles or fires and sit in their light, meditating, telling stories, singing, or crafting.
Donations to charities, candles, poetry (read aloud, then offered to the fire if possible), bread, whiskey.