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Conspiring With Brigit this Imbolc, with Kate Chadbourne | Ep 1
Episode 124th January 2022 • KnotWork Storytelling • Marisa Goudy
00:00:00 00:41:53

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My guest Kate Chadbourne is a singer, harper, and storyteller, an award-winning songwriter and poet, a scholar and teacher of Irish language and folklore with a PhD from Harvard, and a beloved performer at venues throughout New England.  Kate is also the founder of The Bardic Academy, a school for writers, musicians, singers, and young scholars. 

Learn more about Kate as a performer, teacher, editor, and guide.

Fadó Fadó in Éireann…

In celebration of the Celtic festival of Imbolc, Kate offers us two tales of Brigit, Ireland’s patron goddess and saint. The first story describes Brigit as the Blessed Virgin Mary's best friend and the first celebration of Saint Brigit's Day. The second is a story of resourcefulness and kindness: when Brigit saves a fox and outfoxes a king.

Following the stories, our discussion explore: 

  • Fite fuaite… an Irish phrase that speaks to the weaving together of ideas
  • The meanings of Brigit’s names: “Flaming arrow” and “life force, vitality.” 
  • A reframe of the concept “the universe is conspiring on our behalf”  is that the universe is conspiring on our behalf because we are co-conspiring with it.
  • “Conspiring” means “to be inspirited together.” In these stories, Brigit doesn’t ask God to take care of everything, she asks for the eyes to see the solution and she will do her part. 
  • A new perspective on prayer
  • The power of the Celtic Wheel of the Year, which reminds us of our most treasured values as well as our connection to nature. Imbolc: the feast of Ewe Lactation. A great excuse to have the finest butter, cheese, and ice cream!  

Want to offer someone Brigit’s Blessings?  Say: Beannachtaí lá Fheile Bríde

Our show music is a compilation of traditional tunes, including The Cape Breton Salute, performed by Beth Sweeney and Billy Hardy:

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