The demonization of Earth based spirituality was and is not specific to Ireland but rather a global phenomenon, the consequences powerfully articulated by shaman and author, Tom Cowan. “The dispiritedness of the Fisher King gradually swept across the medieval world as Christianity dissociated spirit from nature, thus causing the greatest soul loss in human history.”
Perhaps the greater tragedy is faith organizations evolving to believe more in their own power than the power they espouse.
While this influence in Ireland was tragic, it was not absolute. Beneath the Catholic veneer the old knowing still survives and indeed even thrives – in farmers who will not disturb the standing stones and stone circles in their fields, in construction crews that will not cut down a faery tree, in healers who send healing energy through the Earth to ailing cows hundreds of miles away. The ancient wisdom ways are not lost. They live in the people and especially the land. Touching this great mystery is why I travel to Ireland.
Nowhere is the mystery more potent and powerful than in the landscape of Benbulben. So let’s resume an exploration of that place…