This week is the last of the five-part series on my Gods and this week I’m going to talk about Lir. I saved Him for last not because He’s least – none of my Gods are “least” in my mind or heart – but in part because He was the last one that came to me and because He is the most difficult to find information about.
Lir is the God of the Sea, father of Manannan, as well as several other children (as from the story The Children of Lir where His second wife turns His children into swans for 900 years) – but little else is known about Him. It makes it difficult because I try to base my own personal experience in what it known about the Gods from old times. It’s been important to me for a while and has become more so as I find myself trying to know to build relationships five Gods instead of just two. I worry that sometimes the interactions I’m experiencing are too ideal – because this path brings me so much joy.
To me, Lir has the same primordial feel to Him that Danu has – He is as basic and ancient as the sea that is His namesake. His voice is like the sound of surf in my mind, soothing; He makes me think of eternity, but not in a frightening way – as eternity can be for those of us whose lifetimes reach barely a century – but in a way that makes me feel connected. Lir doesn’t speak to me the way the others do, He is a soft murmuring in my mind. I have an image of an old man – still strong and wiry; He is in the ocean, of the ocean, because He is the ocean. The deep heart that is cold, dark, and still; the shallow seas bursting with life; the seas tossing as a storm rages; and the surf that kisses the shore. He is all of this, and yet, He still reaches out to me, touches me, and calls to me. It makes it hard that I know we will never live near the ocean, because I feel it’s call.
I feel a draw to Lir, and to His son, Manannan, that is different from the pull that I feel to my other Gods. It’s something I haven’t yet been able to put into words. But even with the same feelings, I see Them as completely independent individuals, though I’ve read arguments that either They are one in the same or that the term “mac Lir” in Manannan’s name merely meant “son of the sea” rather than “son of Lir”. For me, these arguments only strengthen my belief of Lir being a primordial, the embodiment of the ocean itself.
Now I find myself trying to understand what these Gods want of me. Manannan and Lir were both Gods necessary to the life of people on an island – they were surrounded by the sea and connecting with a God of the sea gave comfort through the lean times until they could get to the time of plenty. It’s more difficult when the ocean is so distant, but I know there is a reason that these Gods so call to me.
This ends this series, but it doesn’t end my study. I’ll likely do something on Them again later, because I’ve greatly enjoyed doing this – in writing to you about Them, I’ve explored my own feelings more deeply. As with so much from this blog, it has helped me more than I could have guessed it would. It makes me only look forward to what else is to come. ^__^