Blessing of the Kindling

Smouldering fire by Faruk Ateş

Smouldering fire by Faruk Ateş

After being smoored in the evening before bedtime, the fire would need to be ‘lifted’ in the morning. Naturally, like everything else, the action would be accompanied by a prayer.

The hearth was central to the household and therefore provided a natural focus with which blessings could be said for members of the house. In addition, as Carmichael puts it, “The people look upon fire as a miracle of Divine power provided for their good – to warm their bodies when they are hungry, and to remind them that they too, like the fire, need constant renewal mentally and physically.”1

The following prayer has been edited from the original according to my own taste. An ideal time to say it is before breakfast, and it is supposed to be said in an undertone:2

Blessing of the Kindling

Togaidh mis an tula
Mar a thogadh Brìde.
Caim Bhrìde ’s Mhacha
Air an tula ’s air an làr,
’S air an fhàrdaich uile.
I will raise the hearth-fire
As Brigid would.
The encirclement of Brigid and of Macha
On the fire, and on the floor,
And on the household all.3

References

1 Carmichael, Carmina Gadelica, 1992, p595.

2 Ibid.

3 Song 82, Carmichael, Carmina Gadelica, 1992, p93.