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 Witchvox Chapter: Pagan Books   Chapter Page Views: 11,194,514  

Book Specs.

ISBN: 978-1-78099-285-3
Released: Dec - 2012
List Price: $4.99

Wvox Stats.

Vox ID: 324317

Book ID: 2631

Posted: 10.3.2012

WV Impressions: 50,253

Pagan Pathworking through poetry: exploring, knowing, understanding and dancing with the wisdom the bards hid in plain v

Pagan Portals: Pathworking Through Poetry

Author: Fiona Tinker [a Witchvox Sponsor]

Publisher: Moon Books: John Hunt Publishing

Category: Pagan   Level: All

Poetry talks to the heart as well as the head. It can move us, make us think and guide us. This book explores how poetry can help develop a Pathworking through exploring wisdom hidden in plain view. It is a look at creative processes, inspirations, how nature and the Divine move us – and how to apply this on a personal level to Pagan Pathworking.


"Paganism grows from many roots and its profound, numinous, beauty and ready accessibility within the living world around us ensured survival as a strong cultural undercurrent through centuries of religious condemnation. Paganism wells up, of itself, wherever human hearts are open to it. In this wonderful book, Fiona Tinker sets out, analyses, and enters into the spiritual vision implicit in the work of three hugely significant poets; Yeats, MacLeod and O’Sullivan. Her underlying theme is mythopoesis, specifically the ways in which poetry, truly inspired poetry, can connect with us at levels far deeper than the conscious mind can reach. These poems, and the pathworking Fiona Tinker weaves through them, do not tell us what is true. Rather, they inspire and guide us towards thresholds beyond which truth may be found if we are willing to make the journey. Myths need to be entered into rather than received, making Pathworking Through Poetry a particularly valuable addition to any thinking Pagans’ library.

John Macintyre, former President of The Pagan Federation and former Presiding Officer of the Scottish Pagan Federation."

Here then we have a magical work: From it's title of triple meaning through to its challenging use of poetry as a means to tap into the limitless potential of inspiration and on to its invitation to step into the magical cauldron of the bard rather than to remain merely passive. Quite a challenge for the author and the reader both. Fiona Tinker manages the task with great skill, knowledge and the light touch of the fae, that brings a three dimensional experience to a subject that so often manages only two. She reminds us that the bards of old were no mere entertainers, but were, at their best, powerful exponents of an ancient art. This work offers not only an insight into the minds of great poets but also presents a set of tools by which the reader might go forward and discover a new landscape within themselves and a deeper understanding of the relationship between the spirits of nature, mankind and the ancient celtic gods through the language of poetry. I feel there is much more to come from this author and look forward to discovering it.

Shaun William Hayes: Poet, Druid, co-founder of the Sylvan Grove, member of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids (OBOD)


Review: Pagan Portals - Pathworking through Poetry

(With thanks to: A bad witch's blog -

Pathworking is a form of guided meditation, using a story rich with symbolism for self-discovery, personal development and magical learning. A new book by Fiona Tinker in the Pagan Portals series, called Pathworking through Poetry, shows how poems can be the ideal words to meditate on for this purpose.

In the introduction, Fiona explains "Poetry is a perfect medium to transmit occult teaching. This is not a new idea; it goes back millennia and is one well-known to
bards and poets from many eras and traditions. Poetry is full of symbolism, imagery and connotations which pass on meaning."

In Pathworking through Poetry she uses poems from Scottish and Irish writers, such as WB Yeats, and concentrates on Celtic mythology. Poems about the goddess Bridget, who is associated with poetry, magic and healing, and Angus Ňg, the Irish god of love, music and poetry, are explored for their meanings and then woven into actual guided meditations.

The second part of the book looks at how poetry can be used within ritual. It offers a rite to celebrate the sacred marriage at Beltane of Angus and Bridget as an example. The complete words are printed, so it could be run as it is by a pagan group, or used for inspiration.

Part three looks at poetry as a means of transformation. Fiona says: "Some poems can allow us to see things differently from the way we normally look at them, allowing us to develop and change our understanding." She uses Yeats' poem The Collar-Bone of a Hare, which he wrote at a time in his life when he felt he had lost the woman he loved - the Irish Nationalist fighter Maud Gonne. He needed to find a way of changing his perspective in order to move out of despair, and achieved this through writing poetry.

Fiona has adapted The Collar-Bone of a Hare into a pathworking we can use for difficult transitions: "Seeing what is really there, letting go of the illusions and the acceptance of change being something we can choose to address, no matter how painful."

Pagan Portals - Pathworking through Poetryis a beautifully written and practical book for pagans who love poetry and Celtic mythology, using the words of the bard for personal transformation. Publisher Moon Books says on its website: "This book explores how poetry can help develop a pathworking through exploring wisdom hidden in plain view. It is a look at creative processes, inspirations, how nature and the Divine move us – and how to apply this on a personal level to pagan pathworking."

Nimue Brown | The Druid Network

This exquisite little book is both inspired, and thoroughly inspiring. Best suited to those with an interest in both the bardic path and meditation work, it delivers a great deal in its pages. Author Fiona Tinker works with a number of poems, exploring their imagery and meaning deeply. This in itself is fascinating for the myths and folklore brought into the mix, and also offers insight into how to go deeply into poetry. If you’ve forgotten the analysis of school, or hated it, this is a good re-encountering, full of soul and awen. A well written poem is a densely packed thing full of food for contemplation, and taking time to consider nuances, references and just where it takes you is all good work for the bard. In learning how to think about poetry, we also learn to be more adept creators of it.

Fiona Tinker takes the process a step further, exploring how the poem can be utilised for pathworking – overcoming the big problem of keeping track that faces the solitary worker. In theory, any resonant poem could be used in the same way, so the reader can not only explore the poems included, but take the same practice to other works that move them.

From the above you might expect the poems to be ancient. They aren’t. This is an important point, because it is the quality of inspiration that matters, and the way in which inspiration opens a door for us, not the age of the piece. If you are moved, then you have something to work with.

It’s beautifully written, non-dogmatic, accessible and intelligent – the perfect balance. If this is your path then this is a book that will help you considerably on the journey. Very much recommended.

Author's Notes: Discover the esoteric knowledge in the works of Yeats, O Sullivan and other poets. The wisdom of the Bards is hidden in plain view.

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