Our summer issue is out now! The theme is Relationship. Damian Brady, David Brocklebank, Mariana Saad, and Mike Wride share what Relationship means to them— Dive on in!
Our spring issue is out now! The theme is Freedom. Abby Wynne, Enda Mary, Danielle Vierling, Veronica Larsson, Lizzie Eagan, Anthony Sharkey, and Edgar Matuzevics share what Freedom means to them— Dive on in!
Our winter issue is out now! The theme is Light. Sinéad de hÓra, Mark Curran, Jonti Searll, Lydia Campbell, and Darren McKenna share what light means to them— Dive on in!
‘Ballymun Concrete News’ was a unique publication that focused on Ballymun and its community. Its ethos was to publish positive and inspirational news relating to Ballymun. It was founded in 1998 as a single page news sheet by journalist and local resident Seamus Kelly, and was financed by advertising from local businesses. By 2000, the one-man operated newspaper had grown to a full colour 8-page monthly tabloid. It had a circulation of over 20,000 and was distributed free of charge to every home in Ballymun.
The digital archive of Ballymun Concrete News has been donated to Dublin City Library and Archive, and consists of 87 editions in total. Collectively, the papers provide a colourful record of ‘good news stories’ from Ballymun from 1998 to 2006. Articles focus on topics such as the Ballymun Regeneration Project, the opening of new community facilities, theatre, music, and sporting events, and the achievements of local residents in all areas of life.
Councillor Andrew Montague (Lord Mayor of Dublin 2011-2012) said: “I associate the Ballymun Concrete News with the regeneration of Ballymun. The peak of the regeneration was a time of great change, and throughout that time, the Ballymun Concrete News told us the story of our own community. With its glossy and colourful format, the Concrete News always had a positive and vibrant feel.
Seamus Kelly was at the heart of our community at that time. He made it his business to attend as many local events and meetings as possible. He always brought his trusty camera and he faithfully recorded whatever happened in both words and pictures.”
Mr Kelly, who lived in Ballymun for 40 years and edited the paper out of his flat in Plunkett Tower, said he was delighted that the City Archives had accepted his donation, and hopes it will inspire other communities to take up the torch and shine a light on the positive side of local life.
What on Earth? is The Hopsack
In 1979, during a wave of interest in Macrobiotics, social worker Erica Murray and auctioneer Jimmy Murray sank their life savings into opening up a fruit & veg store called “What on Earth?” A few years later, it was renamed “The Hopsack”. Then in 1984, they moved the store to the multicultural hub of Rathmines.
Over the decades, the store evolved as people became more aware of allergies, supplements and herbs. Now they want to focus even more on their original interest in food as medicine. Their recent expansion has allowed for more quality foods to be made available. It also allowed for the addition of a café which caters to the sense of community that is a high priority for the family.
In 2005, a serendipitous dinner led Jimmy and Erica’s son Finn (then an Industrial Designer) to agree to take over the business from his parents. Then in 2008, just before Jimmy passed on, their daughter Kate took a career break from the civil service and joined the family in running the store. Erica, who’s now a Master Medical Herbalist, works in the shop 1 day a week, while Finn divides his work between the store and the family’s farm.
Already famous for their freshly milled peanut butter, the Murray’s next investment is a polytunnel so that they can also provide fresh vegetables for the store. Erica and Finn have also recently taken up beekeeping, so it hopefully won’t be too long before Hopsack Honey hits the shelves.
Sacred Sound & Energy Therapist / Yoga Teacher
Engulfed in your firm embrace, the words flew up through my body unintentionally, unplanned, from a place I never knew existed, and caught me by surprise. I felt my body tense. My heart skipped a beat as shock and fear simultaneously permeated throughout. Stuck at my throat, I couldn’t utter them out loud. I hardly knew you! “It’s crazy,” I thought. Quickly, I pushed them down to the depths; too afraid to release these never before uttered words. They have been trapped inside me too long, filling me with anguish. Now, a dawning, I set them free. I love you. Easy, yet, why so much fear? I feel love. It’s light, bright and beautiful. Is there an on button in your heart to feel and share this love too? Or is it time for me to move on, being eternally grateful for the magical taste of love which you ignited in me.
Teacher / Dancer
Dear loved ones,
It is in the unconditional that we are truly free to grow. I have sunk and swam many times. I would surely drown without the love and tenderness of your souls, without the logic and ferocity of your minds, without a hand to hold during times of sorrow. I am who I am with the help of you.
In the ways possible, I have been supported. Money cannot buy.
I love how we talk so openly and freely. I hope to do so for as long as I live.
I thank you for patience, for love and mercy with my troubles. You see the best in the worst of me. You remind me to…Trust.
I wish I could give you more than I have and I hope to do so with all that I am.
Thank you for the unconditional. Thank you for growing with me.
Dear Sisters of New Hamlet,
I love you all very much. Your kindness and goodness radiate from you. Your dedication to mindful living is embodied in your every instance.
When I am lucky enough to go to Plum Village (which I do every year), I always feel excited on my journey – I will see the Sisters again! Like my long lost family or a best friend I rarely see but know that once we meet again it will be like it was before. We will pick up where we left off; continue our conversations, listen deeply and share from the heart.
We sit, walk and sing together. Last time you sang this song with words that made me cry because they are so true and sum up how I feel about you: “In gratitude, you have watered seeds of love in me. In gratitude, I will water seeds of love in someone too.”
Solas Counselling & Psychotherapy
To all the people I love in my Life,
It is you, all of you, that taught me how to receive and offer love. Sometimes, I struggle to find the courage and generosity to accept and receive your love fully. Equally, in challenging times, I struggle to allow my love for you to be visible. This beautiful thing we call love is what gives my very existence meaning. You could not have given me a greater gift. Today, as a psychotherapist, my life is dedicated to the act of loving each individual person that sits in front of me, and I am fully aware of just how privileged I am to have love as the oil, the mood music, the river that runs through each working hour. I offer deep gratitude and, above all, love to all of you who have taught me how to love by loving me.
This letter is about as private as a public shower.
I protest (and yet he continues).
How can I write this to you and the whole world as well?
How do I write about something I have never understood?
How can I live without you, and know that one day, if you left, I’d have to go on?
What is my love worth when it’s so inconsistent?
Does my love still exist when I’m feeling “bad” thoughts?
How can I fit a lifetime of love into 150 words?
And yet I know you.
I know you by your smell, your curves, your moods, your femaleness, your maleness,
The way you walk down stairs, the sounds you make, the way you touch me…
The fact that my world revolves around you (how can he admit to that?).
I know you and I always will.
Let these words pour all over you.
Will I still love you when I’m dead? (He hopes so.)
Cultural Event Organizer
The Dictionary says that this love thing is “a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.” I have an abundance of that for a lot of people, for every individual in my life, for this country, and for the whole of this human project on this magical planet. In my day-to-day, I have difficulties with people, and certain individuals don’t like me, and I just don’t like them; but for better or worse, we are truly amazing creatures and I am so glad to be here, in this body, in relationship with so many human creatures. We are insane, outstanding, average, annoying, depressed, elated, smelly, stunning, impossible, talented, and that list goes on and on in every one of us. I have a profoundly tender and passionate affection for this miraculous expression of life called humanity. We are all incredible. I love myself and every one of you.
Maybe it’s normal, feeling a little out of place when you first have to deal with a completely new environment. But what happens when, walking for the first time around the streets of the city you’ve just arrived in that same morning, you can only feel at ease, at home, like that’s the place for you? And when, after a week, you’ve already got a job and made friends with your workmates, feeling like you’ve known them all your life, like they were part of the same soul family?
It’s what happened to me two years ago when I transferred to Dublin. I couldn’t help but sense the breath of the city everywhere, its deepest intimate soul, that was telling me, “You can do it, because everything is possible”.
Life Energy Coach
Within the landscape of our modern day urban environment is where I find my true Spirituality. Too often, I have seen and continue to see gurus, shamans and “divine” celebrities who are actually foreign to our cities, but to whom people flock because they believe that they possess some kind of Spirituality that cannot be found within our cityscapes.
I disagree. Living in these urban surroundings for many years now has shown me that true Spirituality can only really be understood from the present moment within the present environment, and not from the past histories of foreign lands.
My Spirit moves through the streets of Ireland’s cities, interacting with people, buildings, plants, animals and the terrain upon which I walk. My Spirit defines, shapes and reshapes these urban realities and the experiences that evolve from these interactions are what form my Spirituality.
Health Store Staff
When I walked out my front door this morning, the weather was perfect… the temperature, the air, it was just lovely and I believe it was lovely just for me :)
I love living in the city and being spiritual. The opportunities are endless if you just open your heart and mind to what’s for you and let the universe give you what you really want. Its easy to just be yourself and feel free, and yeah it can get hectic at times, but all that seems to dissolve around me if I keep my own equilibrium.
I think one of the most precious things you can give someone is your time and there are so many like-minded people here to share beautiful times with over one too many cups of tea. Love is everywhere in the city and if you’re willing to experience it, it really is the answer :)
Everything starts with wishing. If you don’t wish, the city’s not going to help you. The city is just the city. But if you wish something, the city is going to help you, definitely, somehow. Serendipity is not luck, its ability. When I was living in Dublin, I wished to do music activities, to enjoy the music, so I went to lots of festivals, and because I was dancing, it was easy to make friends and now I am playing music in Leitrim.
Next, you have to take action. If you are sleeping on the couch and something happens in the city related to you or to your wish, you won’t notice it. If I didn’t go to those festivals then I couldn’t meet those friends and I wouldn’t have found the place to make music. Wish, take action, notice, enjoy and appreciate.
In the past two years, I’ve lived in three different cities; Galway, Melbourne and Dublin. A lot of people said I was mad to go to Melbourne with just €200 and a place to stay for a week, but of course, when I got there, I met the coolest, kindest people in the most random of places and got a job within two weeks.
It really makes me realise that there are no strangers in a city, or anywhere really. It takes one second to make a friend, to make a connection, and that feeling of fear and danger that can be propagated by the media around big cities is really unnecessary.
Cities can reflect the best and the worst of the human condition. Its about humanity and everything that it can teach us on a personal level. The more we can learn about ourselves from our experiences with others, the more we can give out and share and vice versa.
In Dublin’s Fair City, where the girls are so pretty, there is sheer spiritual awesomeness available to those who sincerely seek to make the craic even mightier.
Dublin is a city where things happen with their own rhythm, where you are likely to bump into friends wherever you go, and where there is great art, music and many opportunities to enjoy exploring enlightenment.
My favourite spiritual aspects of Dublin are the many marvellous people I’ve come to know.
I’ve met many diverse and gentle folk from all corners of the World, and they’ve introduced me to many practices and rituals I’ve come to value, from tea ceremonies to unusual forms of healing.
I also enjoy the inner adventures I get to share with my wonderful friends. Sometimes these happen in meditation groups like BuddhaBag, or sometimes when great DJs summon party spirits and I can’t help but dance.