09 June 2016

The Meaning of Life

Man is an animal, suspended in a web of significance he himself has spun. – Clifford Geertz

* * * * *

In the year 2016, during the Age of Pisces in the Anthropocene Chron and the Subtlantic Stage of the Holocene Epoch in the Quartenary Period of the Cenozoic Era during Phanerozoic Eon of the Current Supereon in Galactic Year (GY) 20, on Planet Terra (Earth) of the Solar Planetary System in Orion’s Spur of the Milky Way Galaxy in the Local Galaxy Group of the Virgo Cluster in the Laniakea Supercluster, Jews believe that Yahuweh speaks Hebrew, Muslims that Allah speaks Arabic, American evangelical Christians that Almighty God speaks Elizabethan English, Roman Catholics that Dominus Dei speaks Latin, Eastern Orthodox that Kyrios speaks Greek, Hindus that Brahman speaks Sanskrit, Zoroastrians that Ormazd speaks Avestan, Buddhists that Adibuddha speaks Pali, Shintoists that Amaterasu speaks Japanese, and religious Daoists that Tai Di speaks Mandarin Chinese.  Each of these groups, and each subgroup and splinter and cult and sect within each of them, believes they are the Chosen People from which will come the Anointed One to assert their rightful dominion over all Creation for all Eternity. 

That belief is absurd.

In fact, belief itself is absurd.  Belief is blasphemy.

* * * * *

No philosophical or theological view vis-à-vis themselves alone, including the hypothesis that nothing exists beyond observable reality, is any more or less valid than any other, except when those propositions state they are the only ones that are correct.

To believe is to define.  To define is to limit.  To limit is to control.  To control is to corrupt.

Belief is not humble; it is aggressive.  Belief is not an sign of submission; it is an assertion of domination.  Belief makes itself superior to that in which it believes by controlling it through the very act of belief, and thus is blasphemy.  Belief is vanity.  Belief is futility.  Belief is the very antithesis of faith. 

To have faith, one must surrender control.  To surrender control, one must abandon limitation.  To abandon limitation, one must give up definition.  To give up definition, one must let go of belief.  To have faith, one must neither believe nor disbelieve; one must unbelieve.

* * * * *

The Homo sapiens sapiens, the only surviving race, or subspecies, of the H. sapiens species, is the dominant race on Terra.  The others races of H. sapiens are H. sapiens idaltuH. sapiens neanderthalensisH. sapiens denisova.  Previous species of Human includes Homo naledi, H. habilis, H. erectus (of which there were nine different races/subspecies), H. rudolfensis, H. heidelbergensis, and H. floresiensis, this last being a completely isolated species which survived to 13,000 years ago. 

Given that most of these have been composed of only one species without any subspecies (as far as we know), making that one species in effect the sole “race” of that species, there have been, as far as we know, eighteen races of Human that have lived on Terra.  Since H. sapiens sapiens is the only remaining subspecies of Human left on Terra, it’s merely accurate to state that there is only one race:  the Human race.

* * * * *

A single member of the race H. sapiens sapiens is, on average, 664 billionths (0.000000000664 or 6.64 x 10-11) km3 in volume, with an average lifespan of 67.2 years.  There are currently 7.3 billion (109) individuals of that race on Terra.

Terra is 1.12 trillion (1012) km3 by 4.54 billion years.  It rotates on its axis at a speed of 1674.4 km/h while hurtling through space revolving around Sol at 108 thousand (103) km/h.

Sol, our star, is 1.4 quintillion (1018) km3 by 4.56 billion years.  The Solar Planetary System is 1.7 duodecillion (1039) km3 by the same 4.56 billion years.

The Milky Way Galaxy is 8 sedecillion (1051) km3 by 13.2 billion years.  Of its 200 billion stars, 40 billion support Class-M planets, with 8-10 billion of these hosting life-forms analogous to Humans, making some 61.6 quintillion (1018) sapient beings in our galaxy.

There are 500 billion galaxies hosting 30.8 nonillion (1030) sapient beings across the Universe.

The Universe is 213 duovigintillion (1069) km3 by 13.8 billion years.  It is expanding outward at a rate increased by the like-polarity of the electromagnetic fields of different galaxy groups.

Our Universe is just one of innumerable such cosmic bodies making up the Omniverse (aka Multiverse), and is currently the only one we can measure.

* * * * *

The Universe is formed of a single matrix called spacetime. 

Everything in the Universe not of the matrix of spacetime is composed of energy.  Energy can be neither created nor destroyed but only change forms.  All matter that exists is but alternate forms of energy. 

Spacetime and energy are thus the fundamental building blocks of the Universe and everything in it, the emanations from which all that is evolves.

There are four basic dimensions—height, length, width, time—which define the point in the spacetime matrix at which we are at any given moment.  Energy flows to and from that single point in spacetime—forward and backward, up and down, left and right, past and future—along each of these dimensions.

The force of gravity provides the cohesion for the Universe in a relationship with the dimension of time that is correlative if not causal.  Without gravity, there would be no time; without time, there would be no gravity.

From our perspective, time is linear.  But from a cosmic perspective, time is a sphere, like the Universe; time, after all, is but one dimension of the spacetime fabric from which the Universe is made.  To a cosmic observer, the future has already happened, and the past is yet to be, and the moment where we are now is the beginning, and the end, and every moment in between.

* * * * *

Life is a function of energy, of thermodynamics.  Given appropriate conditions, life is inevitable, because energy in the form of matter will spontaneously self-organize through abiogenesis.

Once manifest, life evolves into more complex forms which themselves evolve further, with those most adaptable being the best able to survive, reproduce, and flourish.

Life has existed on Terra for 4.1 billion years, and in the Universe since 10-17 million years after the Big Bang.

The essence of life, of all existence, is change and evolution, growth and decay.  Nothing that is static is living.  In fact, nothing of the Universe is static, for of it stasis is impossible.  Stasis is a nonexistence beyond even death.  Stasis is only possible in the void beyond.

For individual organisms, birth and death define the boundaries of life.  Without death, life has no meaning.  Whether or not there is another form of existence once the organic shell has been shed in death and life on this plane ends does not matter; Humans debating those questions are like fetuses discussing questions on life after birth.

* * * * *

The H. sapiens sapiens race is currently 30 thousand (103) years old.  The H. sapiens species has been around 200 thousand years.  The Homo genus has existed 2.8 million (106) years.  The three other known races of the species H. sapiens and the six other known species of the genus Homo are extinct, leaving just the One Human Race. 

By 5 million years, the H. sapiens sapiens race, and along with it the H. sapiens species and the Homo genus, will be extinct due to degradation of the Y-chromosome, if we have not already destroyed ourselves and/or our biosphere or suffered a mass extinction.

By 800 million years, multi-cellular lifeforms will have vanished from Terra.

By 1.3 billion years, eukaryotes will be extinct and life on Terra reduced to prokaryotes due to CO2 starvation caused by chemical disruption from Sol’s increasing luminescence.

In 2.4 billion years, the Milky Way Galaxy and the Andromeda Galaxy will collide and merge into one Milkomeda Galaxy, altering the structure of everything in them, though most stars and planetary systems will remain intact.

In 5.4 billion years, Sol will enter its red giant phase, incinerating Mercury, Venus, and possibly Terra, destroying any remaining life on Terra if not.  The habitable zone will move out to Mars, and Saturn’s moon Titan may become habitable.

In 8 billion years, Sol will collapse into a white dwarf, expelling half its mass into the interstellar medium, making elements available for nucleosynthesis and forming an emission nebula.  Any remaining planetary bodies will be stolen by passing stars, leaving the Solar Nebula.

In 14.4 billion years, Sol will be a totally dead black dwarf star.

The Universe will eventually end in the next Big Bounce (a Big Crunch facilitating another Big Bang) in about 60 trillion years, dying so another can be born anew as it was formed before.

All of this has happened before, and all of it will happen again, and again, and again.

* * * * *

Even in the very rare instances in which Humans have perceived the Ultimate Reality as something genuinely Other, they have then proceeded to append to that insight intermediary realities to connect it to our own in order to believe, define, limit, and control, sometimes reducing fairly advanced concepts to mere ideological dogma.

Every form of Ultimate Reality conceived and believed by religion or philosophy, all of which are geocentric and anthropomorphic, is too small for our Universe.  There is no Divine Creator, no One True God, no Ruler of the Universe, no Supreme Being created by Humans or members of any other sapient species in their own image; all these are nothing but a myth. 

And if there is Something that was before all Time, is now, and will be even after the end of Time, with Time being defined as the lifespan of the current Universe—and to hypothesize such a thing exists is not unreasonable—Something that is the origin of the Universe and all that is in it, of spacetime and energy and life, that Something is beyond personhood, beyond being, even beyond effability.  It has no name and no need of one, for there is nothing else Other from which to distinguish itself, but for the sake of this hypothesis, let’s call it The Way.

The Way was before Time, is now, and will remain after the end of Time.  Time begins and ends along with the Universe and its other three dimensions. 

The Way is a paradox; perpetual yet ever-changing, transcendent yet immanent, metacosmic yet omnipresent, eternal yet omnitemporal, everything yet nothing. 

The Way permeates the Universe.  It is the Source emanating all that is, the Course shaping its procession, and the Force energizing its manifestation.  From our perspective, these are different things, but in reality they are One.

The Way is One; it is neither male nor female, and from it emanate light and dark, good and evil, order and chaos, yin and yang, life and death, bounty and dearth, integrity and entropy, creation and destruction. 

The Way favors none; there is no Anointed One, no Chosen People, no Exceptional Nation, no Elect Species; not on Terra, not in the Milky Way, not in the entire Universe.

The Way neither rewards good deeds nor punishes ill, nor does it exact karmic retribution for imagined imperfection. 

The Way animates without claiming possession; bolsters without requiring gratitude; stewards without exercising authority. 

The Way does not demand our submission, obedience, penitence, worship, adoration, praise, prayer, confession, thanksgiving, supplication, benediction, love, respect, or even belief. 

The Way does not need us nor want anything from us; individual beings are too infinitesimal and ephemeral within the Universe for it to take much note.

* * * * *

So what is the meaning of life, the reason for our existence?  To quote the great philosopher Procul Harum, “There is no reason, and the truth is plain to see”.

To paraphrase Geertz, the One Human Race is a sapient animal species mired in self-created webs of delusion called belief.  The same is probably true for every sapient species across the Universe, past, present, and future.

There is no payback for good deeds or ill.  Do not worry about the future, for the future will take care of itself.  The only moment that matters is the now.  The only beings that matter are those that are here in the now.

The only thing for an individual to do is try to be a good person.  The way to be a good person is to love every other person as you love yourself, both on Earth and across the vast expanse of extraterrestrial spacetime, and do not do to any other person, any other being, what you would not want them to do to you.

Make a better life not just for yourself but for those around you, and, better yet, all those in your nation, and in the world, and in worlds around you when that time comes. 

Remember that Humans will be around for thousands and even millions of years, and that they and members of others species and lifeforms will need the planet too.

All lifeforms—floral and faunal—are sentient and deserve to be respected.  Do not take the life of any form except out of necessity.

Synthetic lifeforms, whether of organic or artificial make, deserve the same inherent rights as lifeforms that naturally occur, for the energy which animates them is the same, and if sapient, they deserve all the rights of natural sapient beings.

All lifeforms, floral, faunal, synthetic, exist in the same Universe that, no matter how vast, is ultimately as finite as they.

Love each other person as yourself, both on Terra and across the vast expanse of extraterrestrial spacetime, and do not do to another what you would not done to you.  Try to be happy.  That is all you need.

Belief…any and all belief…in anything…by anyone anywhere…is an illusion. 

The only way to really love, the only way to actually know, the only way to truly live, the only way to keep the faith, is to give up belief completely.  To unbelieve.

* * * * *

I am a Terran, a child of the Universe and a citizen of Earth.  The whole world is my home, and all its people my brothers, sisters, and cousins, whether of the One Human Race or of other sapient races across the Galaxy and throughout the Universe, regardless of organic or synthetic origin.  We are all equally children of the Cosmos.

May I serve the Cosmos with all my will; may I love each other person as myself; and may I not do to any other what I would not want done to me. 

Let me bring love where there is hatred; pardon where there is injury; union where there is discord; trust where there is doubt; hope where there is despair; light where there is darkness; joy where there is sadness.  

May I seek to console more than to be consoled; to understand more than to be understood; to love more than to be loved.  

May I have what is sufficient for my needs; may I be forgiven my debts, as I forgive those indebted to me; and may I not do what I shouldn’t and do what I should.

May the sick find ease; the weary rest; the dying closure; the suffering relief; the afflicted pity; the vulnerable safety; the hungry sustenance; the homeless shelter; the captive freedom; the distressed rescue; the wavering encouragement; the poor a hand up; the refugee safety; the alien welcome.

In the name of the Way which is the Source, and the Course, and the Force of all that is.

* * * * *

(Most of the above has been posted in previous blog entries, and this is but the latest fine-tuned version.  It will probably not be the last.)

08 June 2016

On Hillary Clinton's assumed nomination

Should Hillary be the Democratic Party's nominee at the convention (and she still does not have the required pledged delegates to push her past the mark; she has 2203 and the benchmark is 2383), it will be a great leap forward for women in the same way Barack's nomination was a great leap forward for black people.  

To gauge just how much that might be, ask yourself this: how much better off today are Afro-Americans compared to what they were 19 January 2009?  

A rising tide powered by the personal ambition of a single individual does not lift all ships.

05 June 2016

Army of the Irish Republic, Easter 1916

HQ Staff, Irish Volunteers, October 1914

Organized thus in the aftermath of the split with from the Redmondites.  The parent organization of both, the “Irish National Volunteer Force”, was founded in 1913 as a reaction to Carson’s Ulster Volunteer Force in the North.  The Irish Parliamentary Party leader John Redmond began using it for his personal political agenda.  With the outbreak of the war, Redmond and his “National Volunteers” supported the British effort on the Continent, to the point enlisiting in nad recruiting for the British Army, and wanted to settle for Home Rule while those who founded the “Irish Volunteers” wanted independence and nothing to do with England’s colonial wars.

Everyone on this list was also a member of the IRB (MacNeill and DeValera only nominally).  With the exception of MacNeill, Hobson, and O’Connell, the members performed these same functions listed here during the Rising in addition to their other duties.

Eoin MacNeill, Chief of Staff
Padraig Pearse, Director of Military Organization
Joseph Plunkett, Director of Military Operations
Thomas MacDonagh, Director of Training
Michael O’Rahilly, Director of Arms
Bulmer Hobson, Quartermaster General
Eamonn Ceannt, Director of Communications
J.J. “Ginger” O’Connell, Chief of Inspection
Edward Daly, OC, 1st Battalion, Dublin Brigade
Thomas MacDonough, Commandant, Dublin Brigade, OC, 2nd Battalion
Eamon de Valera, OC, 3rd Battalion, Dublin Brigade
Eamonn Ceannt, OC, 4th Battalion, Dublin Brigade

Military Committee, Irish Republican Brotherhood, 1916

The men who planned the Easter Rising and formed the Provisional Government, of which Padraig Pearse was the President.  Perhaps stress should be placed on Provisional in the case of Pearse's presidency, since the constitution of the IRB, of which all of these men were members, provided that when the Irish Republic was established, its own president would be President of the Irish Republic, in which case that would be Tom Clarke.  The names are in the order of which they signed the Proclamation of the Irish Republic on Easter 1916.

Thomas Clarke
Sean MacDermott
Padraig Pearse
Joseph Plunkett
Thomas MacDonagh
Eamonn Ceannt
James Connolly

Active forces, Army of the Irish Republic, Easter Week 1916

Organized by the merger, temporary and superficial as it turned out, of the Irish Volunteer Force (IVF), the Irish Citizen Army (ICA), the Cumann na mBan (CMD), the Fianna Eireann (NFE),  and the Hibernian Rifles (HR) under one umbrella specifically for the Rising. 

Because of the confusion over O’Neill’s cancellation notice on Easter Sunday followed by his subsequent countermanding of that order, many IVF units did not come out.  The ones that did and their commandants are listed here.


The major center of fighting, and often the only action considered in accounts of the Rising.  The Rising in Dublin began with a march at noon Easter Monday, and ended Saturday afternoon with the delivery of Commander-in-Chief’s Pearse’s unconditional surrender to the British forces by Cumman na mBan member Elizabeth O’Farrell from GHQ.  The other garrisons around the city held out until O’Farrell herself had visited each with Pearse’s order to cease fire and stand down.

GHQ Staff

Padraig Pearse, Commander-in-Chief, Army of the Irish Republic
James Connolly, 1st Commandant-General, Commandant, Dublin Division, and Commandant, GHQ, Army of the Irish Republic
            Winifred Carney, Aide-de-Camp
Sean McLoughlin, 2nd Commandant-General (after Connolly was wounded)
Joseph Plunkett, Commandant-General
            Michael Collins, Aide-de-Camp
William Pearse, Acting Chief-of-Staff
Michael O’Hanrahan, Quartermaster General

Dublin Brigade, IVF
            Thomas MacDonough, Commandant
            Eamon de Valera, Adjutant
            Michael Staines, Quartermaster

First Battalion, Dublin Brigade, IVF
            Edward (Ned) Daly, Commandant
            Pearse Beaslai, Adjutant
            Company A:  Denis O’Callaghan, acting Captain
            Company B:  Tom Byrne, Captain
            Company C:  Frank Fahy, Captain
            Company D:  Sean Heuston, Captain
            Company F:  Fionan Lynch, Captain
            Company G:  Nicolas Laffan, acting Captain

Second Battalion, Dublin Brigade, IVF
            Thomas Hunter, Acting Commandant
            Michael O’Hanrahan, Vice-Commandant
            John MacBride, Adjutant
            Company B:  Paddy Daly, Captain
            Company C:  Eamon Price, Captain
            Company D:  Patrick Moran, Captain
            Company E:  Thomas Weafer, Captain
            Company F:  Frank Henderson, Captain

Third Battalion, Dublin Brigade, IVF
            Eamon de Valera, Commandant
            Joseph O’Connor, Vice-Commandant
            Company A:  Joseph O’Connor, Captain
            Company B:  Sean MacMahon, Captain
            Company C:  Simon Donnelly, Captain
            Company D:  Joseph O’Byrne, Acting Captain
            Company E:  Liam Tannam, Captain

Fourth Battalion, Dublin Brigade, IVF
            Eamonn Ceannt, Commandant
            Cathal Brugha, Vice-Commandant
            Company A:  Seamus Murphy, Captain
            Company B:  Thomas McCarthy, Captain
            Company C:  Thomas McCarthy, Captain
            Company D:  French Mullen, Captain
            Company E:  Padraig Pearse, honorary Captain
                        Michael Boland, 1st Lt. in charge
            Company F:  Con Colbert, Captain

Kimmage Garrison, Dublin Brigade, IVF (GPO)
            George Plunkett, Captain
            OTR Section
            Scottish Section
            English Section

Cumann na mBan, Dublin Brigade
            Jennie Wyse Power, Commandant
            Inghinidhe Branch:  Eileen Walsh, Commandant
                        Rose McNamara, Vice-Commandant
            Central Branch Branch:  Kathleen Clarke, Commandant
            Fairview Branch:  Molly Reynolds, Commandant
            Colmcille Branch:  Sarah Neary, Commandant
            GPO detachment:  Elizabeth O’Farrell, OC
            Jameson’s Distillery CMB detachment:  Rose McNamara, OC
            Jacob’s Factory CMB detachment:  Mary Elizabeth Walker, OC

(Out of at least 90 women—some say more than 200—who served during the week, 60 were CMB Volunteers, half from the Inghidhe Branch, the only one to turn out intact.)

Fianna Eireann, Dublin Battalion
            Eamonn Martin, Captain
            Company No. 1:  Philip Cassidy, Lieutenant
            Company No. 2:  Barney Mellows, Lieutenant
            Company No. 3:  Ernie Murray, Lieutenant
            Company No. 4:  Niall MacNeill, Lieutenant
            Company No. 5:  Garry Holohan, Lieutenant
            Company No. 6:  Sean Heuston, Lieutenant
            Company No. 7:  Sean McLoughlin, Lieutenant
            Company No. 8:  Leo Henderson, Lieutenant
            Company No. 9:  Padraig O’Dalaigh, Lieutenant
            Fianna Commando:  Sean McLoughlin, Lieutenant

Clan na Gael Girl Guides
            May Kelly, Captain

Irish Citizen Army
            Michael Mallin, Commandant
            Constance Markievicz, Lieutenant-Commandant
            Christopher (Kit) Poole, Captain, Adjutant
            Kathleen Lynn, Captain, Chief Medical Officer
            Jim O’Neill, Captain, Quartermaster
            Seamus McGowan, Sergeant, Assistant Quartermaster
            Section Commanders:
                        Dick McCormack, Captain
                        Jim O’Neill, Captain
                        Sean Connolly, Captain
                        William Partridge, Captain
                        Mick Kelly, Lieutenant
                        Martin Kelly, Lieutenant
                        Peter Jackson, Lieutenant
                        Joseph Doyle, Sergeant
                        James Kelly, Sergeant
                        Thomas O’Donohoe, Sergeant
                        Frank Robbins, Sergeant
                        Madelaine Ffrench-Mullen, Sergeant

Irish Citizen Scouts
            Walter Carpenter, Captain
            Charlie O’Darcy, 1st Lieutenant
            Paddy Carroll, 2nd Lieutenant

Hibernian Rifles (GPO)
            John J. Scollan, Commandant
            J. J. Walsh, Vice-Commandant
            Company No. 1:  Thomas Breslin, Captain
            Company No. 2:  J. Garret, Captain
            Company No. 3:  Sean Millroy, Captain

Dublin City Major Garrisons

General Post Office Garrison (GHQ)
James Connolly, OC
Boland’s Mills Garrison
Edmund De Valera, OC
Cabra Bridge Garrison
Jim O’Sullivan, OC
City Hall Garrison
Sean Connolly, 1st OC
John Reilly, 2nd OC
Elizabeth Lynn, 3rd OC
Four Courts Garrison
Ned Daly, OC
Jacob’s Factory Garrison
Thomas MacDonagh, OC
Watkins’ Brewery Garrison
Con Colbert, OC
Jameson’s Distillery Garrison
Seamus Murphy, OC
Mendicity Institute Garrison
Sean Heuston, OC
Roe’s Distillery Garrison
Thomas McCarthy, OC
Saint Stephen’s Green Garrison
Mike Mallin, OC
South Dublin Union Garrison
Eamonn Ceantt, OC
Clanwilliam House
Michael Malone, OC


Rather than traditional infantry war which they knew would be doomed to failure, Ashe and Mulcahy adopted the guerrilla tactics and organization (in the latter case, switching to “sections” instead of “companies”) which were successful in the War of Independence, leading to the capture of Royal Irish Constabulary posts at Swords, Donabate, Garristown, and Ashbourne (Co. Meath), the last being the only large-scale battle fought outside Dublin.   Their actions were largely in support of the Dublin Brigade to block reinforcements from the north.  Until the surrender Saturday, they were undefeated.

Fifth (Fingal) Battalion, Dublin Brigade, IVF (North Co. Dublin)
            Thomas Ashe, Commandant
            Richard Mulcahy, Vice-Commandant and Adjutant
            Section No. 1:  Charlie Weston, Captain
            Section No. 2:  Edward (Ned) Rooney, Captain
            Section No. 3:  Jim Lawless, Captain
            Section No. 4:  Joe Lawless, Captain

Fingal Branch, CMB
            Molly Adrian, Commandant

(At least 20 CMB volunteers did mobile service with the 5th Brigade)


Intended as a blocking force, the Dundalk Volunteers were supposed to rendevous with other units in the area at Tara on Easter Monday, but received word after they arrived that the Rising was called off.  Upon learning it was back on Tuesday, the Volunteers re-formed and proceeded south, hoping to eventually link up with the Fingal Battalion.  At Castlebellingham, they encountered a force of RIC men, resulting in a skirmish that resulted in one RIC man dead and several injured with 15 taken prisoner.

After linking up with Dunboyne Company in Co. Meath, the column continued into North Co. Dublin, where they halted at Tyrellstown House near Mulhuddart.  From there, they dispatched men to contact the Fingal Brigade and the forces in Dublin.  By the time they were able to contact either, the Rising was over.  Still, they remained “out” until Easter Wednesday.

Dundalk Battalion, IVF
            Paddy Hughes, Commandant
            James Toal, Vice-Commandant
            Donal Hannigan, Adjutant
            Company A:  Paddy Duffy
            Company B:  James Toal, Captain
            Company C:  Joseph Berrill, Captain
            Company D.  Sean McEntee, Captain

Dunboyne Company, IVF
            Sean Boylan, Captain

Other officers in Dundalk Battalion included:  Felix McQuillan, Frank Necy, Thomas Hearty, Hugh Kearney, and Peadar Murphy.


On Thursday morning, forces of the Wexford Brigade (IVF), primarily from the Enniscorthy Battalion, seized the town of Enniscorthy to cut the rail and block reinforcements.  Setting up headquarters in the Athenaeum in the center of town, they sabotaged tracks, a bridge, and communications lines to Dublin.  They also occupied Vinegar Hill, one of the major sites of the Rising of 1798 by the United Irishmen.  On Saturday day, they captured the town of Ferns.  The forces in Wexford and Ferns, up to one thousand strong, only surrendered Low Sunday afternoon after receiving confirmation of Pearse’s order.

Wexford Brigade, IVF
            Robert Brennan, Acting Commandant
            Paul Galligan, Vice-Commandant
            Seamus Rafter, Brigade Adjutant

Enniscorthy Battalion
            Seamus Doyle, Commandant
            Enniscorthy (A) Company:  James Cullen, Captain
            Shannon (B) Company:  Alex Doyle, Captain
            Gorey (C) Company:  Sean Etchingham, Captain
            Ferns Company:  Patrick Ronan, acting Captain
            New Ross Company:  Sean Kennedy, Captain

Enniscorthy Garrison
            Seamus Rafter, OC
            Michael de Lacy, Civil Minister
Ferns Garrison
            Paul Galligan, OC

Enniscorthy Branch, CMB
            Mary White, Commandant

(Up to 90 CMB volunteers did service during the week)

Enniscorthy Sluagh, NFE
            Michael Kehoe, Captain


Though small parties mustered earlier in the week, most demobilized when no orders came, and the major rising in Co. Galway began on Tuesday.  Between 700 and 1,000 volunteers answered calls to muster on Tuesday, but armed with only 25 long arms, 60 pistols, several homemade grenades, and pikes (yes, pikes).  Volunteers attacked RIC barracks at Killeeneen, Oranmore, and Clarinbridge.  Attacks against the barracks at Ardrahan and Peterswell did not take place because those had been abandoned.  There was a skirmish with RIC constables at Carnmore crossroads (1 constable dead, several prisoner), after which the Volunteers occupied the town of Athenry, with the Agricultural School, known locally as the “Farmyard”, as their headquarters.

On Wednesday, the HMS Laburnum shelled the county from Loch Lurgan (Galway Bay), and the Volunteers moved to nearby Moyode Castle.  Patrols had to contend with counter patrols by RIC accompanied by Special Constables who were mostly from the Redmondite National Volunteer Force (NVF).  On Friday, after the HMS Gloucester shelled the area near the rebels and landed 200 Royal Marines, the Republican forces shifted to Limepark House and its grounds, finally dispersing early Saturday morning.

The units below are those mentioned as coming out by at least one or two sources.  Some fifty members of Cumann na mBan also mustered and did active service.  Of particular note is the Caughwell Company of the NVF, the only unit of the Redmondite NVF in the country to come out in support of the Rising.

The Galway Brigade had only recently been divided into battalions, of which there were five (Athenry or Mid Galway; Loughrea or East Galway; Gort or South Galway; Galway or West Galway; Tuam or North Galway), so the companies which were out operated directly under the brigade command.

Western Division, IVF
            Liam Mellows, Commandant

Galway Brigade, IVF
            Larry Lardner, Commandant
            Eamonn Corbett, Vice-Commandant
            Alf Monaghan, Vice-Commandant
            Mattie Niland, Adjutant
            Sean Broderick, Quartermaster
            Athenry Company:  Frank Hynes, Captain
            Rockfield Company:  Gilbert Morrisey, Captain
            Clarenbridge Company:  Eamon Corbett, Captain
            Oranmore Company:  Martin Costello, Captain
            Maree Company:  Michael Athy, Captain
            Castlegar Company:  Brian Molloy, Captain
            Kilcolgan Company, Martin Niland, Captain
            Kinvara Company:  John Burke, Captain
            Kilcolgan Company, Martin Niland, Captain
            Ardradan Company:  Peter Howley, Captain
            Kilconieron Company:  John Hannify, Captain
            Claregalway Company:  Tom Ruane, Captain
            Newcastle Company
            Kilcronin Company
            Killtullagh Company
            Kilmoredaly Company
            Cussaun Company
            Derrydonnell Company
            Cregmore Company
            Killeeneen Company
            Kiltartan Company
            Ballindereen Company

Craughwell Company, NVF

(The only unit of the National Volunteers to come out in support of the Rising)

Galway Branch, CMB
            Julia Mary Morrisey, Commandant

(Some 50 members reportedly came out during the week.)


In Cork City, and other battlions in the brigade area, the confusion in the conflicting orders on Easter Sunday left Commandant MacCurtain unsure of how to proceed.  On Easter Monday, MacCurtain, MacSwiney, O’Sullivan, and a large contingent of Volunteers set about fortifying Volunteer Hall and setting lookouts at bridges and military barracks.  Though there was no actual fighting due to the intervention of Lord Mayor Butterfield and Bishop Cohalan, the Volunteers lived under a state of siege until Monday after Low Sunday, when they surrendered their arms to the military and stood down.

Cork Brigade, IVF: 
            Tomas MacCurtain, Commandant
            Thomas MacSwiney, Vice-Commandant

Cork City Battalion, Cork Brigade, IVF
            Sean O’Sullivan, Commandant
            Sean Murphy, Vice-Commandant
            Company A:  Sean Scanlan, Captain
            Company B:  Donald Barret, Captain
            Company C:  Patrick Cotter, Captain
            Company D:  Christopher O’Gorman, Captain
            Cobh Company:  Michael Leahy, Captain
            Dungourney Company:  Maurice Ahern, Captain

Cork Branch, CMB
            Mary McSwiney, Commandant