St Patrick’s Day (according to the Annals of Ulster) celebrates the death of the man who lived in the middle of the fifth century. He was taken to Ireland as a slave when he was 16 where he lived for about 6 years before he escaped and returned to his family. Soon after he joined the Catholic Church and was ordained as a bishop before returning to Ireland with the one intention of converting the barbaric Druids to Christianity. In written history, the “heroic Druid warriors, of fighting and feasting and living close to nature, is contrasted with the more peaceful, but unheroic and non-sensual life offered by Christianity.”
In some uncensored literature that survived the burning of all books and scriptures of pre-Christianisation, it is said that St. Patrick was responsible for banishing ‘all snakes from Ireland.’ Snakes being a Druid symbol. In other words for murdering and conquering the Druids and Pagans of that time – and all in the name of God. This story goes to the core of Patrick’s sainthood and his core mission in Ireland.
Before the Druid revival of this century little was known about them as they are said to have left no written account of themselves and the only evidence is a few descriptions by scattered authors and artists. In fact – they merely went underground, as did most of the pagan and pre-Christian teachings in order to survive.
St Patrick seems to have borrowed from his victims the theme of triplicity by using the Shamrock as a symbol for the Holy Trinity used by the Christians to symbolise the Father, the son and the Holy Spirit. (Note the absence of the Mother in this trilogy). The shape of the Shamrocks and the colour green are the central themes for St. Patrick’s day. Three is a sacred number in the Druid tradition and there are some beautiful Triads cleverly hidden in ancient Bardic poems and songs. (eg. The story of Taliesin). One example of this triplicate is The Triple Goddesses of ancient Ireland, Brigid, Eriu and the Morrigan.
So this year when you blindly celebrate the life of a man who was sainted by the Church for what most of us today would consider unthinkable – give thought also to those who were lost – along with their wisdom and knowledge – and of a man who was also the victim of his circumstances and the indoctrination of his time. – From beneath the sacred Oak, we have come to the Druid Rising. – Jyoti Eagles