Tír na nÓg
Type of Spiritual Experience
The text is describing what appears to be an out of body experience encapsulated in legend
A description of the experience
from Internet site
Tír na nÓg or the ‘Land of Eternal Youth’ is a place where heros go after they have died. It is where the Tuatha Dé Danann or sídhe settled when they left Ireland's surface, and was the resting place of some of Ireland's greatest heroes. An island in the spiritual world it is described in Celtic mythology. Like the Blessed Islands it is situated in the west. Whether each of these travellers in the spiritual world are finding the same island each time is unclear. They all seem to have the same attributes, but different occupants.
Tír na nÓg could be reached by either an arduous voyage – a common theme - or an invitation from one of its fairy residents. The isle was ‘visited’ by various Irish heroes and monks in the echtrae (Adventure) and immram (Voyage) tales popular during the Middle Ages. This spiritual island was a place where sickness and death do not exist. It was a place of eternal youth and beauty. Here, music, strength, life, and all pleasurable pursuits came together in a single place. Here happiness lasted forever; no one wanted for food or drink.
Tír na nÓg plays a major role in the tale of Oisín and Niamh. To get to Tír na nÓg an adventurer needed a guide; in Oisín's case, Niamh plays the role. They travel together on a magical horse, able to gallop on water, to the Blessed Realm and the hero spends some time there. Eventually homesickness sets in and Oisín wants to return to his native land. He is devastated to learn three hundred years have passed in Ireland since he had been with Niamh, though it seemed to him only one. He goes home on Niamh's magical horse, but she warns him not to touch the ground, as the weight of all those years would descend upon him in a moment. While Oisín is helping two men move a stone, he falls from the horse and ages in an instant.
It is fairly clear from all these stories that these islands have probably been ‘seen’ by shamans/druids in a visionary state and the normal effects of spiritual travel have resulted. The time in the spiritual world seems to be enormous, whilst in reality the time the vision lasted was far less, probably only a few hours or days at the most depending how strong the potion they used was.