Shanore News

Musings, ramblings and thought provoking articles from our team of talented writers - all views expressed are their own!

Give Thanks “Go Raibh Maith”

What is it that you are thankful for? Are you sure to be thankful every day or are you one who has to be reminded of all the blessings you do have periodically?

Saying thanks is no stranger to Ireland and their culture because blessings are somewhat ingrained into their habits and behavior. There are statues and memorials built to those spiritual beings who they are thankful for. There are also places of significant value and perceived as being of a higher nature in Ireland that people can see and visit just to re-tune their spiritual pipes. Some of these sites are Tara Hill, Mellifont Abbey, and Dowth among many other sites.

Why is it that people visit these places? Are they curious that if they go there they will be transported somehow? Are they hopeful that these sacred places will help to heal an ailment or fix a problem that no one on Earth can? It is far from crazy thinking, since many might say those are the very reasons they go. They may just go out of allegiance, devotion or to give back for what they do have. They may realize how blessed they truly are and want to make it known to the divine or their spiritual higher power.

Celtic tradition and history have made it easier and quite beautiful by helping the people express their gratitude by having lists and ready made blessings that can be memorized and said whenever it is appropriate.

For instance, this is an Irish blessing called “The Roof for Rain”:

May you always have walls for the winds,
a roof for the rain, tea beside the fire,
laughter to cheer you, those you love near you,
and all your heart might desire

It is interesting to note that just upon brief inspection of Ireland’s statistics on homelessness in the year 2011, out of the over 4 million residents in the republic, it was reported that only 3800 or so were staying in a residence for homelessness.

Taking a comparative glance at the U.S. during the year 2013, it was estimated that over 65,000 U.S. veterans were without a home. It was also speculated that 1 in 50 children were homeless in the U.S.

This Celtic trinity knot locket is the perfect symbol for those who cherish what they have whether it is a family member, a pet or a prized possession. This locket is charming and can be worn everywhere you go and you can take whatever it is that you care most about inside the locket for safekeeping and privacy, not to mention it will always sit close to your heart.

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I realize the populations are much different and drastic being that the U.S. has many more residents than Ireland so thus we should expect a larger number in comparison. However, I did the conversion and the U.S., with the most conservative estimate, had at least twice the number of homeless persons as Ireland.

It makes me wonder and I realize that Ireland knows how to give gratitude and pay homage for what they do have. Although bad things happen to people from time to time, the blessings speak for themselves. Perhaps, other countries could learn a thing or two and start to be grateful for their roofs and pantries and even just a small thing like giving thanks could help end an entire epidemic. If we all realized how truly blessed we were, then perhaps, those who needed it the most could get the help they needed too.

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