Why are our tours and retreat travellers 80% women?
Is Ireland a living Goddess?
Many of our visiting women believe this, and have good reason to.
Added to this is their belief that this age is an awakening time for women. 1000s of years of the suppression, esteem breaking and persecution of women is breaking away so that they once again become in total flowing balance with men.
I feel convinced that this age old suppression and persecution of women has also suppressed the flow, effect, purpose and good stewardship of masculinity.
The ancient tales I now share through stories and folk drama at ancient sites are from times when women were actively the earthly presence of the goddess. They were keepers of the flame while men provided the fuel that kept their flames alight. Without the flame of the feminine the masculine is not fired with courage, focus and destiny. It makes complete sense that women were also the earliest creators and providers of swords, a symbol of male and female flowing in constant balanced motion.
When I tell and perform these these ancient tales I treat them as they are messages for today, messages longed for today, especially by women.
Is Finding Your Celtic Story also Finding Your Celtic Goddess?
I am currently completing a book, “Finding Your Celtic Story – from the land and its sacred sites”, and by “the land and its sacred sites” I am indeed referring to what some may say is the expression and creation of the “goddess”.
Some good hearted evangelic Christian folks have recently questioned me about this, and will always question what I am meaning here, with questions about “two or more gods?”, “pagan worship?”, and they become quite confused when I say “neither!”.
Then I remind them of “their” trinity interpretation of “father, son and holy ghost” with the “holy ghost” part often being “holy spirit” and with many irish people understood as the “guiding spirit” . It is through this third element we embrace connection to the “goddess” who is the unique mother spirit of the earth but not creator of the universe.
I will quickly add that every evangelic Christian person who has challenged me with line of questioning, so far, has been male. If women now challenge me with the same I would like to question whether they are truly speaking from their heart or from a trained logic caused through ages of feminine suppression.
Sheela na Womb
A fascination for women visiting Ireland are the sheela na gig engravings, also found around the UK. These symbols are either of women with wide open vulvas inviting cautious entry into their womb, or women with a cross legged reminder that their womb is a one way passage of spirit.
These sculptured engravings were made by ancient male stone masons, perhaps as their own reconnection to female spirit during their own suppression by church monks and, later, fortress commanders. Today, there are many women artists re-creating sheela na gig images through their art on canvas, sculptures and in print and are dedicated to them being an important ancient symbol message for women today.
Around Ireland there are also sacred lakes on hills within mountains that are surrounded by the sacred sites of chieftains. I refrain from using the term “burial sites” as these sacred sites seems to be known in ancient times as a place of spirit transfer both into and out of this world.
Its as if these mountain based lakes also function as nature’s own sheela na gigs from where spirit is born, re-charged and returned. The Sheela is of the Sidhe, the woman spirit that brings life to earth and takes it away back home again back to its greater circle.
Some caves in Ireland seem to also inspire the same function such as our local Ceis Coarran caves in Morrigan’s mountain here. It is wonderful to hear women sing and make music within these caves, as a re-charge of their own hearts and strength of blessing.
Some women have told me that these caves, and some waters here in this part of North West Ireland, totally recharge them
Men need Cailleachs, and Cailleachs need men
While women seek the divine feminine within themselves through nature, sacred places, ritual, meditation, and love from others, men are also quietly seeking the divine masculine. Together I see the two as an essential flame to sustain all life on earth with women being the hearth of the flame and men being the fuel of the flame. The two cannot meet or function without the spark of “the fiery arrow”, the spark of Bhride, of Brigid.
In the Hebrides of Scotland I find it quite warming that the men often refer to their wives as their “Cailleach” in conversation. Many of them do not realising what they are saying but the word is some sort of recognition that their women are their goddesses, or at least their connection to the goddess. Bhride’s day is also that humbling day each year when men stop recognise this and humble to the flow of this spirit for the day.
Visiting the Guide, The Angel and even The Mother of All
Some women that come here to ireland believe that it is this land where the goddess will be awoken within them. Some arrive here with stories of their guiding angels, their spirit guides and their past lives, stories of a spirit or entity that seems to be like a shadow of themselves. These women clearly describe and seem to understand their “shadows” better than themselves, but I think that’s ok!
I love the movie, “Harvey”, with James Stewart, that invisible friend. Many of the women that visit Ireland seem to become at one with their shadow, become the shadow they know so well, and express this so well through new writings, poetry, songs and even drawings that they create here. Its as if these women totally embrace their shadow, their invisible friend, their guide, and become one. They are then totally empowered, sometimes almost like a character from a super hero comic.
Some women experience this union and transformation within the ancient stone structures that remain here, the cairns, the stone circles and the sacred wells. Some women experience this from embracing the spirit of nature here such as among the legendary greens, sacred waters and unique sounds that come from nature here.
Overall, many women who arrive here in Ireland with an “emptiness” find the emptiness is within their divine womb which becomes fertile and able to give birth again through divine creativity. Women that join us for retreat and sacred journey here seem to be sparked by the Fiery Arrow that ignites a new flame within, and reveals a sense of a more divine motherhood.
Suddenly Ireland, for them, seems like a place to feel loved, listened to and appreciated.
Finding Your Feminine Celtic Story
I would like to think that our sacred and story journeys and retreats here in North West Ireland are a pilgrimage for women to re-ignite the hearths of their divine wombs so that once again they feel loved and can then again give birth to more divine creations expressed through service, teaching, guidance and created arts. Journalling through writings, poems, songs and drawings are such an important part of this.
For men there is no more joy, motivation and raising of the divine libido when a woman’s divine womb is re-ignited. The divine libido seems to be something close to what Jung described as free creative, or psychic, energy a man needs for personal achievement.
Some say, behind every successful man is a good woman, a Chinese employer once told me in China they say behind every successful man is a surprised mother in law, but in “our story” beside every man’s ability to fuel achievement and sustain good stewardship is a well sparked divine womb of a woman, the Cailleach
….. and it looks like many women have experienced their rekindled hearth from the Fiery Arrow of Ireland, the spirit of Bhride, of Brigid.