I cannot take credit for the idea of this idea. Thanks to Jason Pitzl-Waters at The Wild Hunt for his post about the reality of St. Patrick from 2012. Today was the first time I’d read his piece, but it struck a chord with me. It started with a discussion (read, mild argument) in one of the Facebook groups I’m in about the nature of Deity, which evolved into a discussion of what hero and ancestor worship entails, and eventually left me to realize that, though I am grateful for the information that bunch shares with me, I am so glad that I’m not trying to shape myself to their ideal of what faith practice should be!
If you are unaware of the story of Cú Chulainn (pronounced coo cullan), then you can hear the story here. I prefer listening to the stories and am currently working on finding them online. There’s just something lost when I read it in my mind. The importance of his life was that Cú Chulainn made the choice to live a life of a great warrior, seeking eternal recognition, even at the price of a short life. He was a man who willingly gave himself fully for both the protection of his people and for the glory that would go with it. In the highest Celtic style, he was a hero. And it has become obvious to me that these great heroes deserve a place of honor in my heart, mind, and practice.
I still haven’t worked out exactly what that place should be, but there is much of my practice that I haven’t yet worked out. And I find that, simply taking those first moments to acknowledge that Cú Chulainn, in his glory, has leveraged himself to amongst the greatness of the Gods, not by the power of his divine birth, but through the courage of his so very human heart. The same with Fionn MacCumhaill and his Fianna. But it isn’t something as difficult for my spirit to accept, as I’ve had a relationship with the fair folk for many years and, though they are very different one form the other, they are similar in that they are not the Gods, but are deserving of my honor.
So today, I am celebrating Cú Chulainn Day, which for me will be the day that I accepted my calling to honor those who are not Gods but are equally as worthy, as well as celebrating those whose honor, courage, wisdom, and valor earned them a place among the Gods. So on this day, as always, I wish you,