Tag: wheel of the year

Everyday Witchcraft, by Deborah Blake

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Everyday Witchcraft, by Deborah BlakeEveryday Witchcraft, by Deborah BlakeEveryday Witchcraft: Making Time for Spirit in a Too-Busy World, by Deborah Blake Llewellyn Worldwide, 9780738742182, 240 pp.,  2015Deborah Blake is a witch of many hats; she's an artist who runs an art co-op, High Priestess of Blue Moon Coven since 2004, and author of six works of fiction and nine books on witchcraft. She knows her way around a busy life and in Everyday Witchcraft: Making Time for Spirit in a Too-Busy World Blake has compiled many short and sweet acts to encourage the everyday witch into taking a few minutes beyond the ordinary to tap into the world of the elements, deities, ancestors, and spirits.In this book, "witch" refers to a self-identified person, though one need not be a witch to learn from Blake's book. Though she uses the terms Pagan, witch and Wiccan interchangeably, it is clear that her approach is Wiccan. Her magical correspondences, prayer formats, and use of one goddess and one god, reflect Blake's training in Wicca. Regardless, she shows the reader of any path how to build small and meaningful cycles in their own lives in the small moments and spaces that can make a life magical. Read More

The Great Work, by Tiffany Lazic

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The Great Work, by Tiffany LazicThe Great Work, by Tiffany LazicThe Great Work: Self-Knowledge and Healing Through the Wheel of the Year, by Tiffany Lazic Llewellyn Worldwide, 9780738744421, 399 pp., 2015Tiffany Lazic has been practicing spiritual psychotherapy for more than 16 years. She is also a presenter and keynote speaker and owns the Hive and Grove Center for Holistic Wellness, where she offers individual, couples and group therapy. In The Great Work, she has woven together her experience of transformational psychology and spiritual arts with our Western mythological inheritance to create a workbook for personal development; one that functions on psychological, spiritual and emotional levels.The foundation of the book and its practices is the notion of "essence." This refers to the spark of divinity that each of us carries within us, that essential truth of personal experience that makes us unique individuals. Due to past experiences, this essence can be plunged into a darkness that at best obscures our unique potential, and at worst causes us debilitating pain. Read More

Christian Mythology, by Philippe Walter

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Christian Mythology, by Philippe WalterChristian Mythology, by Philippe WalterChristian Mythology: Revelations of Pagan Origins, by Philippe Walter Inner Traditions, 9781620553688, 213 pp., 2003, 2014We all know the story: as Christianity moved into Europe it absorbed and transformed elements from Paganism to help convert the population. Pope Gregory told Saint Augustine not to destroy Pagan temples, but to exorcise and bless them, not to ban festivals but “let some other solemnity be substituted in its place, such as a day of dedication or the festivals of the holy martyrs whose relics are enshrined [in the converted temples].” The idea was that by adopting Pagan places and festival dates it would be easier to convert people through familiarity.In Christian Mythology: Revelations of Pagan Origins, the question Philippe Walter raises is this: how much of Christian mythology and celebration is a carry-over from a pre-Christian Pagan Europe? Walter is a professor of medieval French literature, so he is very well-read in the literature and folk tales of the times, which he believes preserve the Pagan elements before they were completely lost into Christianity. Read More

Mabon: The harvest of the autumn equinox

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Wheat harvest, photo by Bernat CaseroTwice a year, in the spring and in the autumn, day and night are equal, and we call these times equinoxes. The second harvest (between Lughnasadh and Samhain) corresponds to the autumnal equinox and is called Mabon, a modern name derived from the Welsh god Modron, son of the Earth Mother goddess. In the northern hemisphere, daylight will lessen and night will grow longer, as the Earth prepares to sleep. Traditionally, it’s a time of continuing to give thanks for abundant crops before food becomes scarce. Read More

Mabon, by Diana Rajchel

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Harvest apples, photo by Liga EgliteMabon, by Diana RajchelMabon: Ritual, Recipes & Lore for the Autumn Equinox, by Diana Rajchel Llewellyn Worldwide, 978-0-7387-4180-2, 227 pp. (incl. appendix, further reading, bibliography, and index), 2015Reading Mabon: Ritual, Recipes & Lore for the Autumn Equinox brought my attention to Lewellyn's Sabbat Essentials series highlighting the eight sabbats celebrated in many Pagan traditions. The Wheel of the Year is common throughout many Pagan communities and creating literature for each season sets a great intent to understand them more deeply. As a career author and journalist with publications in Llewellyn's annuals, The Beltane Papers, Circle Magazine, Facing North, and SageWoman, Diana Rajchel (also the former executive editor of the Pagan Newswire Collective) has the chops for this title.Mabon has six chapters bookended by two sections. Following the series introduction, Rajchel dives into the topics of old and new ways, spells and divination, recipes and crafts, prayers and invocations, and rituals of celebration. The appendix of the book includes tables of correspondences for Mabon, a list of further reading, a bibliography and index. The book as a whole provides many ways to enjoy the autumnal equinox, regardless of the path one walks. Ritual leaders, festival-planners, school-groups, and families can all use this book to deepen their understanding of the myths and practices of Mabon, while also providing some great conversation starters for discussion groups. Solitaries will enjoy the many simple and home-based crafts, spells, and divinations. Read More

Silver Witchcraft Tarot Kit, by Barbara Moore

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Detail of the Ace of Pentacles, from the Silver Witchcraft TarotThe Silver Witchcraft Tarot Kit, by Barbara MooreSilver Witchcraft Tarot Kit: The Ancient Wisdom of Tarot, booklet by Barbara Moore, artwork by Franco Rivolli Lo Scarabeo, 9788865273104, 78 cards, 160 pp. booklet, 2014Illustrated by Franco Rivolli, The Silver Witchcraft Tarot is a Pagan deck that focuses on the cycle of the year and feminine energies. It draws upon traditional Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (RWS) imagery as well as nature-based “magickal spiritual understanding,” says Barbara Moore.When opening the deck for the first time, its most striking features are the silver gilded edges and vibrant colours. The cards are easy to shuffle, riffling showcases the beautiful gilt edging, and the cardstock feels sturdy, but not too thick. The large box that houses the cards and booklet shows off the prettiest card in the deck, the Ace of Cups, and is great for storage, but a bit cumbersome for travel. Read More

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