The Irish poet and philosopher John O’Donohue was beloved for his book Anam Ċara, Gaelic for “soul friend,” and for his insistence on beauty as a human calling. In one of his last interviews before his death in 2008, he articulated a Celtic imagination about how the material and the spiritual — the visible and the invisible — intertwine in human experience.
John O’Donohue had a very Celtic lifelong fascination with what he called “the invisible world.” His voice and writings continue to bring ancient mystical wisdom to modern confusions and longings.
“One of the tasks of true friendship is to listen compassionately and creatively to the hidden silences. Often secrets are not revealed in words, they lie concealed in the silence between the words or in the depth of what is unsayable between two people.”
― John O'Donohue,
"There are certain threads that run through the work of John O’Donohue. They manifest themselves with different colors and textures. The form may change for different purposes of rhythm and resonance, but the intention remains constant. It is grounded in human vulnerability and the desire, the longing, for a connection to the wonder of the divine in nature, and human life within it." - President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins
“Many of us have made our world so familiar that we do not see it anymore. An interesting question to ask yourself at night is, What did I really see this day?”
― John O'Donohue,
“It is a strange and wonderful fact to be here, walking around in a body, to have a whole world within you and a world at your fingertips outside you. It is an immense privilege, and it is incredible that humans manage to forget the miracle of being here. Rilke said, ‘Being here is so much,’ and it is uncanny how social reality can deaden and numb us so that the mystical wonder of our lives goes totally unnoticed. We are here. We are wildly and dangerously free.”
― John O'Donohue