The Shining Ones

To understand Celtic Spirituality we must suspend the normal way of looking at the world and ‘sense’ the other worlds around us.”
– Donald McKinney, Celtic Spirituality for the 21st Century


Looking North East towards Slieve Anieirin Mountain…

Slieve Anierin, known as the Iron Mountain, is a magical landscape, where Iron Age people once mined Iron Ore. 

Slieve Anierin in Leitrim; Sliabh-an-iarainn, the mountain of the iron; from its richness in iron ore.


Bealtaine Cottage is surrounded by landscape, where traces of ancient peoples are to be found with ease. 

The Tuatha de Danaan were one of these ancient races and were also known as the Shining Ones.

Candle at Bealtaine Cottage

Few people are aware of the fact that it was these people who became the origins of what we know worldwide as the Fairies…or the Sidhe.


This was the Tribe that became the Sídhe…the Fairy Folk.

The stories of the Sidhe abound in Ireland.

We live alongside our ancestors.

This path at Bealtaine leads down into the Fairy Wood.


There is much written about the 

Sídhe, pronounced “shee”, and a lot of the writings are contradictory, much like the 

Sídhe themselves!

Living among the remnants of ancient tribes, as I do, here in the West of Ireland, watching skies with stars so bright, they illuminate the night, it is easy to believe in theSídhe…even revere them at times.

There comes a shift in perception, when one’s closest allies are the invisible forces of Nature.

Where does reality begin and end?

What is actual and what is reflection?

For much of it is coloured by perception.

This was something debated by the Romantic Poets, as they often explored the world around them, using reflections, as they held up mirrors to gaze into Nature.


There are many tales relating the emergence of Fairies in Irish Folklore.

Many legends recall how once  great Queens, Kings and Warriors became


upon death.


In turn, these mortals went on to  establish new kingdoms in the ancient mounds and hills of the landscape we know today.


It is easy to regard these ancient sites with reverence and understanding, for even though there are millenia of time that separate us from them, they are part of our ancestral being.

Bealtaine Cottage moon rising over the permaculture gardens

The true origin of the legendary Tuatha De Danaan lies somewhere between the worlds of reality and perception of reality.

The name means literally “the folk of the god whose mother is Dana.”  

Bealtaine Cottage 006

It is merely recorded, that they appeared, as the clouds rose, from the mountain of Slieve Anierin, on the day of Bealtaine, the first day of May…Summer.


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Bealtaine cottage crafts 010Bog Oak Pendants are available from the Bealtaine Cottage Craft Shop. (Sorry, all are now sold. No longer available!)

Each pendant is hand-crafted from locally sourced Irish Bog Oak, an ancient and profoundly mysterious wood that’s been buried in the Irish peat bogs for thousands of years.

These pendants are made from wood dated as 5,600 years old.



  1. Growing up in a flat in London, I longed to be outside more often than we were, my three sisters and myself. I never saw little beings, and I still don’t, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t believe that they are there. I read the story about Findhorn about the nature devas and that captured me. Now living in the Land of Oz, I often talk to the nature devas and ask them to help me in my garden and I believe they do as with our extremes of weather we have had recently, 45 degree days and now a tropical cyclone with 9 inches of rain in one day, people say that my garden has fared really well in comparison to others. I loved your post, it gives me a little bit of the chills, a good feeling.

  2. Lovely post and photos! The wee folk play at the back of my Great-Grandparent’s farm here in the foothills. We are Scot-Irish and the wee ones delight us with rings and gifts of flowers in unexpected times. My sister and I see them frequently and played with them when we were wee ones. My Great-Grandmother was a Saura Native and Great-Grandfather was Scot-Irish. Between them, we were awash with many wee folk and magic. On very sad days (and sunny ones!) they will come visit me and leave me the fragrance of roses and lilacs… I love visiting a kindred spirit.. thanks…

  3. After working with children all over the UK and Ireland for thirty five years and having horses and dog I have come to the realisation that we can learn more from nature,dogs,horses and children than they can ever learn from us because they do what we should be doing but seldom do in our selfish materialistic lives and that is they give unconditionally, which is they key to why we are here for such a short stay until we come to this realisation when and only when we can move on to other and brighter energy levels. You, like so many little people( children) are an advanced souls shining that light. I too live in the west of Ireland where one can hear silence and breath clean air. Silence is the loudest sound one can hear but only if one is really listening. All love Peter.

    • I feel very much a part of the Earth…and suspect that many people are beginning to feel the same way…for Mother Earth is reaching out to those who listen at this crucial time. Blessings to you too X

  4. I love this. Weather I believe or not??? I do believe there are many ‘things’ we humans are unaware of. When picking berries at a neighbor’s, he said be sure and get them all. I told him as an excuse really, “I always leave some for the pixies.” He grinned & seemed to like that. I still don’t pick trees & bushes completely clean. I am not the only one who likes the bounty:)

  5. I am a Daily, immagration changed the spelling when my family arrived here in the U.S. My grandmother believed in the faye, that lived on the land of her parents. She said they came here, with them. She said they would always be with the family, I am the last of them. I stoped laughing about that old story, I am 67 now, many years ago when I kept seeing winged beings in my yard. I could say the eyes where getting old yet since I was in my 30’s after grand mother died that didn’t fly. Out of the corner of my eye I see flying things that do not look like anything with wings I know off. Also I get brushed on my check while working in the garden that I can never see any reason for it. Call me a little daft but I believe.

    • We are actually quite unaware of most of what is around us, as our perceptions are governed by what we are told to believe in when very young. For my part, I acknowledge the visible and invisible, aware now that life is a case of “all is possible!”
      Blessings XXX

  6. What a wonderful post. I always do enjoy them so much. My husbands ancestors were from Ireland and I have always thought of it as one of the most beautiful places on Earth. When asked where I would like to live or visit if I could chose one place, I have always answered Ireland.
    The land I live on is rich in history. It is where the Creek Indians once traveled and gathered. We have found many artifacts on the land in the form of arrow heads, pottery shards, and even a tomahawk head.

  7. I’m 1000ft up in Scottish hills and moors, and all around me, on the hilltops, are Iron Age hill forts. On a raw day when the cold wind blows I always wonder what life was like for these people..

    • There was probably a lot of forest back then, so lots of shelter and food too. I know that Ireland was once completely forested…now many of the mountains are stark bare!
      Blessings XXX

  8. It is such a pleasure to receive your posts, I truly look forward to them, and hope to visit Ireland one day ~ Blessings.

  9. My favorite post so far… Made me think of a quote by Octavio Paz which reads (he was speaking about the Aztecs): “We don’t know them, and they don’t know us, but sometimes they speak to us.”

  10. Thanks for reminding me how magical it is here on Sliabh an Iarainn. We’ve started our own legend about the giant Neerin that lives up on the mountain … our donkeys grow wings becoming flonkeys and fly up to meet him at night 😉

  11. I really truly enjoyed your write-up and photos today, it’s very mysterious and beautiful, a blessing for those who can truly live close to nature like that and wonder at this ancient mystery. Thank you and blessings.

Your comments are welcome!