There are many echoes of an ancient past around Lough Erne. Devenish Island contains one of the finest ancient monastic sites in Northern Ireland. A round tower thought to date from the 12th century is situated on the island, as are the walls of the Oratory of Saint Molaise who established the monastery in the 6th century. It became a centre of scholarship and although raided by Vikings in 837 and burned in 1157, it later flourished as the site of the parish church and St Mary’s Augustinian Priory.
The famous ‘Janus’ figure stands on another island – Boa Island. This two sided figure with pear shaped heads, has the male figure pointing towards the East face and the carved female side facing West. It is regarded as one of the most enigmatic and remarkable stone figures in Ireland. It is called a Janus-figure because it has two faces, reminding some of the Roman two-headed deity Janus. However, it’s not a representation of Janus. It is thought to represent a Celtic deity In Celtic culture, heads were very important because they were thought to contain a person's spirit after their death.
Just by being back in this place, I will be steeped once more in an ancient Celtic past. Growing up, one has little time for such things but now I find it quite fascinating! These sites remind me that we are all part of a long, ancestral line, which contained much beauty and wisdom.
As I am on an Irish theme, I shall conclude with an Irish Blessing!
An Old Irish Blessing
May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.
Sending you as always…..
Much Love and many Blessings,