Foreword to Kindling the Celtic Spirit by Mara Freeman
Power of sea be yours,
Power of land be yours,
Power of heaven.
West Highland blessing
The great Celtic scholar, Dr Anne Ross, once said that ‘everyone with European roots can consider themselves of Celtic origin’. People who are not directly descended from Irish, Welsh or Scottish families tend to think they have no Celtic roots, but in reality so many different European tribes contributed to the creation of Celticism, and over thousands of years such a mixing of populations has occurred, that virtually anyone alive today, with European ancestry, can be said to have Celtic origins.
Nevertheless, over the centuries, the countries on the western seaboard of Europe – Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Cornwall and Brittany – have become the guardians of Celtic culture – struggling to preserve their languages, and proud inheritors of a folklore and mythology replete with spiritual power. This book is a celebration of those countries and those peoples who have managed to preserve such treasures for the world.
But this book is more than a celebration, because it is designed to make the treasures of Celtic culture and spirituality come alive, and be of use to us in the midst of our modern, and often busy lives.
Good books are like handfuls of seeds. They gift us with ideas, turns of phrase, images and memories that grow with time to colour our world, and bring beauty and magic to our lives.
And the first step in discovering that beauty and that magic lies in the turning of a page…..
Aotearoa – The Land of the Long White Cloud