They may well be lots of technical explanations of how Ireland did or didn’t perform in Edinburgh; we made simple errors, we played too deep, the spacing was wrong etc.
To my mind these are not the cause of the defeat; they are symptoms of why we were beaten.
In short we beaten because we did not believe we had a right to win.
When we play New Zealand or Australia we can raise or game through the emotional commitment to the cause and undoubtedly that is a factor. Too often, we find it hard to perform well without that emotional connection and commitment but again I do not see that as the cause rather as a symptom of the cause
In essence, we can commit to the emotional challenge where the victory will be seen a heroic struggle but does not separate us from our peers. We can beat New Zealand and lose to Scotland; we can beat Australia in a World Cup and lose to a Welsh team we should beat. We are afraid of our own power, we are afraid to own the space as the leading Northern Hemisphere side.
The very things that allow the English to claim that space, we shy away from. The self -belief, the sense of entitlement these are uncomfortable to us. We dismiss this as arrogance but ignore the sense of value that underpins it. It is too easy to dismiss it as arrogance as that allows us to shy away from our own power.
As a nation we do not like to embrace our power and stamp our claim. To do so would often see us have to change our role, our story from that of victim or lucky underdog to conqueror.
The reason we keep losing to teams such as Scotland when we are on an apparent rise is the national and ancestral reluctance to claim that space; the embarrassment of putting 50 points over Italy or the reluctance to go to Edinburgh to win a hard fought game, but will it well accept that will inflict a pain on the defeated.
We do not want to bully anyone.
The mistake we have made over the years is by seeing this as an individual or team issue; how motivated are the players; how is the team interaction etc. This needs to be addressed at the national and ancestral level. Steeping into our power is made more difficult by our ancestral pain, the victimhood that we ascribe to the bullying of others, the shame of being seen to hold power over others.
It is at this level that we need to work; the players are fighting something they themselves do not fully understand and/or articulate just as the wider society does not understand and/or articulate. Many of us have forgotten the vocabulary for the conversation. We have forgotten the archetypal energies, the legends of the Tuatha de Danann, the fairy stories to allow us connect with that fear which is buried deep with our psych, which is passed across generations in our DNA.
Until the Irish Rugby team deal at that level then, with respect, we will continue to lose to teams we should beat. Why… because deep, deep, deep down at that forgotten level we will not want to.