On this Saint Patrick’s Day…

Happy Saint Patrick’s day.

There is an old Irish toast that I find poetic and moving. I’m sharing it here today on the occasion of Saint Patrick’s day. 

It is all the more touching given that we have travelled few roads and met few distant friends in the last 12 months due to the Covid pandemic.

May the Road Rise Up to Meet You

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again,
may God hold you in the palm of His hand.

The Origins and Meaning of the Poem

Celtic literature contains a strong connection between spirit and nature. The wind, the sun and the rain are important images in celtic story. I like the idea that spirituality is not abstract but deeply connected with the earth and nature and our surroundings. In my life, looking at high mountains and looking at sunrise or sunset over the sea are some of the most spiritually uplifting experiences.

In Irish, the first line is “Go n-éirí an bóthar leat”. It is more literally correct to translate as “May you succeed on the road”, the French equivalent of which is “bon voyage.”

Author: Conor Neill

Hi, I’m Conor Neill, an Entrepreneur and Teacher at IESE Business School. I speak about Moving People to Action.

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