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Whatever happened to the moving statues ?


seanad voter

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I forget how long ago it was now (perhaps a decade or a dozen years?) when there was a spate of "moving statues" around Ireland. Ballinspittal was perhaps the most famous of them with thousands of people being bussed or driving down to see what was supposedly going on - a statue of Our Lady twitching or something.

It seemed for a while that every town and village had to get in on the act with their own statues jigging about Riverdance-like to attract the tourists. The Catholic Church, if I remember correctly, was unsure how to handle it. It was great if people were getting all pious and saying the Rosary and suchlike, but it all seemed a bit daft into the bargain, embarrassing indeed. Why was God interfering with statues instead of communicating directly with the Holy Father ?

Then, just as quickly as it had started, it stopped. No warning to the ice cream and chip and burger sellers. Over, gone, done. No word of explanation.

It's not talked about now. And yet ... one wonders if out there in the great Irish beyond there might not be the odd statue or two twiddling a toe this summer. Anyone have anything to report ?
 

locke

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The one in Ballinspittle was smashed by someone who disapproved of idolatry.

It was replaced, but the new one just doesn't move like the old one did.
 

morryah

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seanad voter said:
I forget how long ago it was now (perhaps a decade or a dozen years?)
22 years ago.

They were superglued into place. End of story.
 

QuizMaster

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It was 1985 it started.

I tell you what, if I bought a statue and it started moving around, I'd want my money back. The word statue comes from the latin word "stat", to stay still. That is what they are supposed to do and to sell a moving object as a statue is a breach of the trade descriptions act.
 

wexfordman

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I remember I was in 2nd year about that time (so just over 20 years ago), my english teacher had this mad theory.

She reckoned that the previous year had been very wet or damp or something like that. She said that this had an effect on the wheat, in that a mould grew on it, which got into the food chain via the bread!!! Stick with me here, you probably know where I am going at this stage.... She reckoned the mould was a hallucagin (spellin!!) and the whole country was effectively on acid :)

I reckon she's cracked, but funny thing is I cant remember much else about that year :lol:

Her theory, not mine.
Wexfordman
 

QuizMaster

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Interesting theory, and very daring for the Ireland of 1985.
The mould in question is ergot which does indeed grow on wheat and is indeed hallucinogenic.
It has other, less desirable physical effects too though, so I think we would have known.

I don't think drugs are needed to explain mass hysteria.
 

seanad voter

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Was it as much as 20 years ago ! Flipping heck, doesn't time fly ? I was living in Dublin at the time and I remember the Irish Times (I think it was) had a sort-of 'Moving Statue Watch' column which reported on the latest sightings.

There were several theories advanced by various Catholic clerics - invariably 'down the country' - regarding the meaning of it all. The favourite themes were doom and disaster (always good for attracting a crowd). Terrible things were going to befall poor old Ireland. There'd be Divorce, Contraception, Immigration, Ian Paisley as Taoiseach of Northern Ireland and Martin McGuinness as his Tánaiste. All rubbish, of course. Even Christy Moore couldn't make it up.
 

wexfordman

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QuizMaster said:
Interesting theory, and very daring for the Ireland of 1985.
The mould in question is ergot which does indeed grow on wheat and is indeed hallucinogenic.
It has other, less desirable physical effects too though, so I think we would have known.

I don't think drugs are needed to explain mass hysteria.

Wow, must investigate this ergot stuff a bit further :D All in the interests of historical researh and all that of course 8)
 

Thac0man

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I remember it well. What srikes me about it is that much of the scoffing and poking fun now was almost entirely absent when it happened. Whether one believed or not, the other worldyness of the whole thing kept everyone glued to their TVs. It leads me to conclude that many religeous sceptics are at their core superstiteous.
 

straighttalking

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It was believe it or not over 20 years ago now. Times were very different, there were no jobs and emigration was in full swing.Religion was more important then. Couldn't see the same level of interest being generated today as Irish people worship other Gods now.
 

Edo

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straighttalking said:
It was believe it or not over 20 years ago now. Times were very different, there were no jobs and emigration was in full swing.Religion was more important then. Couldn't see the same level of interest being generated today as Irish people worship other Gods now.
Im told watching Big Brother has the same effect.
 

MichaelR

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wexfordman said:
I remember I was in 2nd year about that time (so just over 20 years ago), my english teacher had this mad theory.

She reckoned that the previous year had been very wet or damp or something like that. She said that this had an effect on the wheat, in that a mould grew on it, which got into the food chain via the bread!!! Stick with me here, you probably know where I am going at this stage.... She reckoned the mould was a hallucagin (spellin!!) and the whole country was effectively on acid :)

I reckon she's cracked, but funny thing is I cant remember much else about that year :lol:

Her theory, not mine.
Wexfordman
1985... wait. that's the founding year of the PDs?

:)
 

Colmog

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MichaelR said:
wexfordman said:
I remember I was in 2nd year about that time (so just over 20 years ago), my english teacher had this mad theory.

She reckoned that the previous year had been very wet or damp or something like that. She said that this had an effect on the wheat, in that a mould grew on it, which got into the food chain via the bread!!! Stick with me here, you probably know where I am going at this stage.... She reckoned the mould was a hallucagin (spellin!!) and the whole country was effectively on acid :)

I reckon she's cracked, but funny thing is I cant remember much else about that year :lol:

Her theory, not mine.
Wexfordman
1985... wait. that's the founding year of the PDs?

:)
It was indeed, the year when passion and vision came to Irish politics. :)

And when in the karmic style of the universe which seeks to balance all things others completely lost their heads and imagined all kinds of craziness!

I was about to emigrate at the time and the whole moving statues things passed me by. It was an extraordinary event in Irish social history though.

We don't really talk about it anymore. I wonder are we now too embaressed to even relfect back upon it and try to understand what it was all about?

Colm
 

EvotingMachine0197

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straighttalking said:
It was believe it or not over 20 years ago now. Times were very different, there were no jobs and emigration was in full swing.Religion was more important then. Couldn't see the same level of interest being generated today as Irish people worship other Gods now.
It is a bit unbelieveable that it was over 20 years ago, for me it coincided with the horrible experience of having to sit my leaving cert. :shock:

It was a fine example of the ease with which mass hysteria could take hold within a society. That and Ronald Reagan going for a pint in Ballyporeen are testaments to the lunacy of Ireland in the eighties.

And I fully agree with Quiz, a moving statue is a faulty statue.
 

qtman

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EvotingMachine0197 said:
straighttalking said:
It was believe it or not over 20 years ago now. Times were very different, there were no jobs and emigration was in full swing.Religion was more important then. Couldn't see the same level of interest being generated today as Irish people worship other Gods now.
It is a bit unbelieveable that it was over 20 years ago, for me it coincided with the horrible experience of having to sit my leaving cert. :shock:

It was a fine example of the ease with which mass hysteria could take hold within a society. That and Ronald Reagan going for a pint in Ballyporeen are testaments to the lunacy of Ireland in the eighties.

And I fully agree with Quiz, a moving statue is a faulty statue.
There were also sightings of people who seems to glow in the dark, which were later attributed to eating too much Ready Brek.
 

straighttalking

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Mass Hysteria appears to be part of our make up, one minute we're watching moving statues, then we're all football supporters (Italia 90), then we're line dancing, then we're Riverdancing,then we're buying multiple houses, the list goes on, Its the "one in all in" philosophy. spot the next trend in Ireland and you're made
 

QuizMaster

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Why no God squad coming on here claiming they were really moving?

It's not like we're short of believers around here.
 

seanad voter

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An intersting fact about the moving statues is that there were none in Northern Ireland.
 
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