Sunday, March 27, 2011


Cruthaitheoir (noun): creator. Cruth (noun): shape. Cruthigh (verb): to create, to shape.

I’ll be honest, I have no idea how to pronounce the Irish Gaelic. Even the net wasn’t much help. Traditionally, when we speak of creation stories we mean that something was brought into existence. But, there can be a second meaning; to bring into a new form. And, since the root word, cruth, means to shape, there is the implication that the Creator is working with something that already exists.

In the Irish mythology that survives, there are no creation myths as we usually understand them. There seem to be no in the beginning there was
“nothing” and then there was some “thing.”

The eternally curious scribes in the old Irish monasteries translated, copied and recopied every scrap of paper that came their way. It’s likely that they would have copied a pagan story of creation if they had access to one, even if they reworked it to give it a less pagan emphasis.

Or perhaps, as Tom Cowan author of Yearning for the Wind suggests, the Irish Celts didn’t have an “In the beginning” story. The universe didn’t have to come into
“existence” because it has always existed. If, somehow, the universe has always existed then the Creator has always existed, does exist and will always exist. Creation becomes a reshaping, not a sudden appearance of something out of nothing.

So where did the raw material for reshaping come from? Cowan believes that the raw material comes from the Creator. The ever changing, ever shifting and always becoming universe is the essence of the Creator.

For Cowan the Creation trinity is a relationship. This trinity is the Shape, the Shaper and Shaping of life. The shaping three are truly indivisible; no one of this trinity can exist without the other. As part of an always existing, ever changing universe everyone living in that universe can become both Creator and Creation. We are the Shape, Shaper and Shaping of that Creation. But, there’s a dark side that modern society prefers to ignore. If we are Creators we can also be Destroyers. When we cut and fray the threads of the tapestry of Creation we do it to ourselves.

1 comment:

Michele said...

I look forward to following your work. I particularly liked the vision of Trinity. It flows, as life does...whenever I'm working on, organizing, surviving these times, I use a phrase taught me by a very smart woman..."Trust the Process". I think it's the same thing as Walking With Hope.

PS In your library, "The Celtic Way of Prayer", great book!