Well, today is Saint Patrick's day.
For those of you celebrating, I just thought I would remind you what that means for pagans and witches, in case some of you did not know or just thought it was a good excuse to get drunk!
To start things off here is an excerpt from a version of one of my favorite stories about St. Pat, as told in the intro of the 'Lore' Amazon TV episode 'The Beast Within'
1 On a cold night in the late fifth century, a man named Patricius walked down a lonely road in Ireland.
Patricius was on a mission to spread the Gospel.
But the road he walked was never easy.
Fifth Century pagans weren't always receptive to the teachings of Christ, especially in the village of Ossory.
That's because the people of Ossory already had a god.
They worshiped the wolf.
I come in the name of Jesus Christ.
Patricius' message held no power for the people of Ossory.
And their leader had no use for his salvation.
It seemed like the end of the road for Patricius.
And then something strange began to happen to one of the villagers an ungodly transformation from man to beast.
Villager by villager, this unnatural metamorphosis continued until they became a savage pack.
But it wasn't Patricius they wanted.
Patricius' success at spreading the word would eventually make him a legend.
Today we refer to him as Saint Patrick.
But on that day, his mission was overwhelmed by the spirit of the wolf.
Next, there is this, from Biography.com;
It’s time for Irish heritage to take the spotlight once again with the arrival of St. Patrick’s Day. Partakers in the luckiest day of the year will break out the green face paint and four-leaf clovers to pay tribute to the fabled saint this March 17th. But how many people really know what St. Patrick was all about? Before going out and submerging your body in all-things green, learn some little known facts about the saint you're celebrating and take the sham out of your shamrock!
• St. Patrick wasn’t Irish!
The biggest misconception about St. Patrick was that he was Irish. In spite of the fact that everyone dyes their hair red and throws on their best buckled shoes to commemorate the saint, he has nothing to do with Irish culture – at least not until after his childhood. Born in England circa 385, St. Patrick didn’t make his way to Ireland until Irish pirates kidnapped him at age 16. From there, he started his journey to converting the Irish to Christianity and becoming an Irish patron saint.
• The original color for St. Patrick’s Day wasn’t green.
There’s enough green seen on St. Patrick’s Day to make even Yoda and the Hulk feel like it’s a bit overdone. The strange thing is that green wasn’t even the original color used to represent St. Patrick; it was blue. After the Order of St. Patrick was established in 1783, the organization's color had to stand out from those that preceded it. And since dark green was already taken, the Order of St. Patrick went with blue.
• There were no snakes for St. Pat to banish in Ireland.
St. Patrick was known through folklore for having chased away snakes in Ireland, thus protecting townspeople from the mysterious creatures and sending them to the sea. However, Ireland didn’t have snakes at the time. Surrounded by icy water, Ireland was the last place that these cold-blooded reptiles would want to go. It’s much more reasonable to think that the “snakes” that St. Patrick banished were representative of the Druids and Pagans in Ireland since they were considered evil.
• St. Patrick was never canonized by a pope.
With all of this recent talk about popes, it’s worth noting that St. Patrick never got canonized by one, making his saintly status somewhat questionable. Let's just say he’s a saint in the same way that Aretha Franklin is the “Queen of Soul” or Michael Jackson is the “King of Pop.” But in all fairness, St. Patrick wasn’t the only saint that didn’t go through a proper canonization. In the Church’s first millennium, there wasn’t a formal canonization process at all, so most saints from that period were given the title if they were either martyrs or seen as extraordinarily holy.
This was interesting as well, from National Geographic;
No Snakes in Ireland
The St. Patrick mythology includes the claim that he banished snakes from Ireland.
It's true no snakes exist on the island today, Freeman said. But they never did.
Ireland, after all, is surrounded by icy ocean waters—much too cold to allow snakes to migrate from Britain or anywhere else.
But since snakes often represent evil in literature, "when Patrick drives the snakes out of Ireland, it is symbolically saying he drove the old, evil, pagan ways out of Ireland [and] brought in a new age," Freeman said.
The snakes myth and others—such as Patrick using three-leafed shamrocks to explain the Holy Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Ghost)—were likely spread by well-meaning monks centuries after St. Patrick's death, Freeman said.
In conclusion, when you celebrate St. Pat's day, you are celebrating a man who not only was not even Irish or a 'saint' but who drove out and slaughtered all the pagans he could find in Ireland to advance Xtianity. (Of course, we know some hid deep down in their 'snake holes!)
Saying all that, any excuse to drink is a good one, however, I for one will not be venerating this asshat while I do it!
Edited by Solanaceae, 18 March 2018 - 01:48 PM.