Reflections on the Easter Rising — Easter 2024

“Blood is a cleansing and sanctifying thing, and the nation that regards it as the final horror has lost its manhood… there are many things more horrible than bloodshed, and slavery is one of them! — Pádraig Anraí Mac Piarais

While the Easter Rising took place between 24th and 29th of April, it is more important to keep in mind Pearse’s deep Catholicism than it is any specific details about dates. He intentionally chose Easter of 1916 to launch the Rising to invoke in the minds of the Irish people Christ’s own death and rebirth.

Ireland was a deeply Catholic country at the time and so this was a powerful and bold move. A deeply spiritual man himself, he understood the risk of offending people in this choice – to compare oneself to Christ, of course, is blasphemy of a severe magnitude. However, Pearse walked the walk and laid his life down. He was no idle blasphemer, but a messianic figure in his own right.

This makes Pearse difficult for the Regime to incorporate. A man for whom Catholicism is woven into every atom of the world and upon which his morality is based is as inadmissible as it is unassimilable. Pearse is, without doubt, the most important figure in Irish historiography. Without him there would have been no Rising nor War of Independence. He is the culmination of centuries of Irish thought and action under the British regime – but his worldview is too alien for a modern, Liberal state to tolerate, much less one which holds secularism as a virtue in and of itself.

Today, Ireland is in a spiritual crisis. Young people are so spiritually disconnected from their Nation that the only thing keeping them here is a satisfactory material situation — which is unavailable to most of our youth. The looming spectre of suicide haunts almost every community; young men in particular all seem to have brushed shoulders with it, either by knowing someone who took their own life, attempted to or has thought about it. Being in Ireland weighs on them like a drenched bull’s wool coat: something which usually should provide warmth and comfort is, by circumstance, turned against you.

So, they leave.

Pearse would have understood this malaise, of course. It was in Christ which he saw a way out of it – to break the spirit free from the weighty chains of materialism. Through this materialism today, we are exposed to myriad indignities which would likely have resulted in entire communities revolting had they taken place only a few decades ago. All of this so that we may keep our underpaid jobs serving the god of Finance, as our spiritual and ethnic identity is deconstructed around us and replaced with a thin gruel of consumerist Americanism – pliable to said god.

If one understands this, it’s then easy to understand what he meant when he said that there is a deeper and darker horror on Earth than bloodshed.

This Easter, it is important to keep in mind not only Pearse’s sacrifice, but his vision; his mindset; his ontology. The Regime will try to destroy us because our success destroys it. Democracy, Liberalism…these are simply excuses for the totalitarianism the Regime wishes to enforce.

It is nothing new in the Irish mind. It is nothing new to the Irish soul. We represent a force which exists beyond mere lifetimes and political systems. As such, if we simply remain true to ourselves – and to Pearse’s vision – we will forever be outside the reach of the Regime.

Ar Dheis Ar Aghaidh!

Daeln Murphy