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Stories of Manannan Mac Lir

and the Associated Faerie Lineages of
Gods, Bards, Artists, Mages, and Warriors

Introduction


This web site is a description of a modern person's spiritual journey into an ancient Celtic world.

I traveled to Ireland with an interest in pre-Christian Celtic religion and folklore, and returned with a gateway to the gods of the Fair Folk. It was a surprise encounter since I was neither pagan nor Wiccan, and much of my previous religious experience had been Buddhist.

I explored the west coast of Ireland, visiting sacred wells, abandoned churchyards, the stony Burren, assorted passage tombs, stone circles, and ancient dolmens (ritual markers), and the reconstructed beehive huts of the coastal dwellers. These western areas maintained more of the older traditions that had died off in eastern Ireland.

I met with a story-teller (shannachie) of the old tradition who proceeded to drink heavily as he described an event that occurred on a lonely dark road when he was in his early teens. He was captured by Fair Folk and brought to a faerie wake, but he refused to eat anything, knowing that taking their food would pull him into the faerie world for the remainder of his life.

He went on to tell of Biddy Early, a wise woman with a magic faerie tincture that could heal any ailment when the prayers for healing done by local Catholic priests did little.

There are not as many storytellers as there once were, and it is hard to find older sacred sites. They are generally not marked unless they are on the tourist routes, and few of the local people know the history. I looked for a hill dedicated to a Celtic goddess, and eventually, someone could point the way there. I crisscrossed rural roads in the car though woods and pastures, making my way upward.

I stood on the side of the sacred mountain in the rain, where once there were processions for the faerie queen, and now there were only cows grazing.

But the Fair Folk were still accessible through that place, though the connection was a bit tenuous. The queen appeared to me with her mages and nobles and greeted me. We spoke of the material world, and its relation to the Fair Folk, and she tried to find a role for me in relation to her people. She first tried bard since I had written poetry and played music, and then artist since I had been a painter, but neither quite fit. The final decision was that I should be an emissary or perhaps publicist for their tradition, and in the years since that gray, rainy day, I have been learning about their culture.

There are different lineages among the Fair Folk. The members of these lineages are not sentimentalized glowing children, and they are not personifications of cuteness or sweetness, or even playful tricksters. Nor are the Fair Folk that I know the dangerous, dishonest and volatile characters of Irish folklore, who steal maidens and children away to their worlds for their own selfish ends.

The lineage that I am familiar with is that of King Manannan and his Queen Fand. They have an impressive paradise composed of ocean imagery, for Manannan is the old sea god of Ireland. They were hesitant about creating this web site initially, but Manannan decided that publicity was good for gods and could serve to unite the ancient and modern worlds. The mages agreed more hesitantly, being concerned that no confidential information should be included.

Thus, this site will have more general descriptions of deities and environments, but the more personal aspects of contact with the supernatural worlds will not be included.

This site is divided into the following areas.

  1. Manannan Mac Lir
  2. Manannan's Ocean Kingdom
  3. Lir and Danu, Ancestor Gods of the Fair Folk
  4. Queen Fand
  5. Lugh and the Morrigan, Deities of the Fair Folk
  6. Aengus, The Poet God of Love, Romance, and Meaning
  7. Anya, Daughter of Manannan
  8. The Dagda - The Dark Man of the Ancestors and the Green Man of the Forest
  9. Magicians and Wizards - The Fair Folk versus Harry Potter
  10. The Fair Folk as Counselors
  11. The Water Maidens of Healing
  12. Merlin
  13. Taliesin
  14. Bridget or Bridie
  15. The Role of the Bard
  16. Origin Stories of the People of Manannan
  17. Manannan's Horses
  18. The Society of the Fair Folk
  19. The Elasticity of Time
  20. The Place of Transformation
  21. The Ancient Roads to the Fair Folk
  22. Building the Realms of the Fair Folk
  23. Traveling Between the Worlds
  24. The Methodology Used in Researching the Fair Folk
  25. Conclusion



Introduction | The Fair Folk as Counselors | The Water Maidens of Healing | Manannan Mac Lir | Merlin | Taliesin | The Fair Folk versus Harry Potter | The Dagda - The Dark Man and the Green Man | Bridget or Bridie | The Role of the Bard | Manannan's Horses | The Society of the Fair Folk | Origin Stories of the People of Manannan | The Elasticity of Time | The Place of Transformation | Building the Realms of the Fair Folk | Lir and Danu | Lugh and the Morrigan | Anya, Daughter of Manannan | Manannan's Ocean Kingdom | The Ancient Roads to the Fair Folk | Traveling Between the Worlds | Research Methodology | Aengus, The Poet God of Love, Romance, and Meaning | Conclusion

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