The isles in the title of this book are the Hebrides which lie between the west of Scotland and the north of Ireland, and the songs are the prayers an blessings which originated there between the sixth and ninth centuries. They remained a purely oral tradition until a hundred years ago when Alexander Carmichael collected and published them as Carmina Gadelica, the source book that led to the revival of Celtic spirituality today. These prayers and songs capture the remarkable spiritual vision of a people keeping faith through good and ill, ekeing out an existence in a world that was often harsh and inhospitable. They rejoice at the birth of a child o a good harvest, glory in natural beauty, lament in suffering, cry out for help or protection, and invoke God's blessing on even the most humble tasks. Until now we have only known them in the Victorian language of Carmichael's collection, bu in Kathleen Jones' fresh translation, thir poetic simplicity and power is fully revealed and we hear authentic Celtci voices speaking with conviction about life and death, hearth and home, land and sea, and the journey of the soul beneath the protecting power of heaven.
In the Celtic tradition, God speaks through two books: the Bible and creation. Influenced by the wisdom tradition of the Old Testament and the mysticism of John’s Gospel, Celtic spirituality sees creation not simply as a gift, but as a self-giving of God. His image is to be found deep within all living things: sin might bury his living presence, but never erases it. His voice can be heard speaking through all created things.
For centuries, the view that the world is alienated from God has damaged our understanding of creation, but today, as many are rediscovering their Celtic heritage, we are again learning to reverence creation as the dwelling place of God. This original and exciting book takes us on an exploration of each of the days of creation as recorded in Genesis and introduces us to a very practical Celtic spirituality, which will open our eyes to recognize the presence of God all around.
Sheet music (as an A4 booklet) for the sung version of Morning, Midday and Evening Prayer.
This is a new edition with a new cover and updated copyright information. The musical setting inside is the same.
What does it mean to be made 'in the image and likeness of God'? This is the first and defining characteristic of our humanity celebrated in the opening pages of the Bible. Its subsequent record is of the struggle between good and evil in human life, a tension that we face daily within ourselves and in the relationships of our lives.
Western Christian tradition has often given the impression, and sometimes explicitly taught that this tension is primarily between the soul and the body. The result has been a denigration of the human body and distrust of our deepest physical desires. We no longer recognise within ourselves the characteristics of the divine image. Yet written into the vey fabric of our being in the mystery, wisdom, strength, beauty, creativity, eternity and presence of God.
This profound and challenging book clears away centuries of misunderstanding, confusion and shame that have damaged our self-perception. Drawing on both Jewish and Celtic Christian sources of spirituality, Philip Newell leads us to discover the sacredness of our souls and our bodies. Our present day assumptions about love, beauty, sexuality and worth are transformed by this truly ground-breaking book.