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Traditional Witchcraft for the Seashore |
Author: Melusine Draco [a Witchvox Sponsor]
Publisher: Moon Books - John Hunt Publishing
Category: Traditional Witchcraft Level: Beginner
The Story Behind …
Every book has a story behind the story of how it came to be written. It may be about a life-long passion, a personal journey, the need to share an experience or knowledge. It may have been fermenting in the brain for years or sprung fully formed from a blinding epiphany. Whether it be fact or fiction, sometimes the story behind the story is almost as important as the published book itself …
Traditional Witchcraft for the Seashore
Originally called Sea Witch and published under a pseudonym by ignotus press, it was later amended and extended before being added to the Traditional Witchcraft series. Newcomers to the Arcanum witchcraft foundation course over the years had shown a depressing lack of awareness about the natural tides that affect us magically, emotionally and mentally, and as far as most were concerned there were only the monthly moon phases to worry about – with no mention of the daily atmospheric, oceanic and earth tides. There had to be a way to illustrate the importance of these magical energies without getting bogged down with science.
Like most people I love the sea but it is not until we actively engage with it that we realise just how much its power affects our lives, even if we live miles inland. The sea is from where all life-forms come and the oceans that give the planet that remarkable image from outer space. My own fascination came from a library book taken out over sixty years ago that showed the remarkable creatures that exist in the darkness of the Deep – and this reaction is reflected in two of the magical exercises included in the text.
Those of us who live inland should also be aware that much of the earth beneath our feet was, once upon a time, a sea-bed, for water covered a lot of the lowlands – the central Midlands of the British Isles, for example were covered by salt water, as were vast areas of the Great Plains of North America. The limestone deposits left by the retreating sea-water are sedimentary rocks, composed mainly of skeletal fragments of marine organisms such as coral and molluscs that once lived in these ‘inland’ seas. We also know this from the fossils found embedded in mountain peaks that were pushed skyward as a result of the earth’s tectonic plate movements.
Traditional Witchcraft for the Seashore was aimed at the casual beachcomber who is happy to mooch along the beach alone or with just the dog for company, and enjoy the simple pleasure of discovering what has been brought in on the morning tide. There are suggestions of how to utilise these items magically and for the more ambitious – how to create your own inland ‘sea garden’ for meditation purposes.
The sea is a magical place and there are all manner of strange energies that can be harnessed from the seashore. This title was intended to take us on a journey that explores the mystery of the sea from the rock pools on the beach to the great life-forming ‘smokers’ – hot water vents that are home to bizarre community of life-forms that exist in complete darkness on the ocean floor. And we should not lose sight of that final journey we must all make over the sea to the Isles of the Blessed …
Traditional Witchcraft for the Seashore is published by Moon Books and available in paperback and e-book format. For more information go to www.moon-books.net or Amazon.
It was Andy Lloyd Book Reviews that first put the Traditional Witchcraft series into its proper perspective: “The ‘Traditional Witchcraft’ series provides varied information about what it means to be a practising witch in modern times. In places, it feels like a guide, or self-help book. But there is much more to it than that. What strikes me is the amount of science running through the book. To understand nature is to live as a part of nature, and ultimately to become one with its changing patterns and cycles, to synchronise one’s own psychic or magical energy with natural tidal forces and the elements. So a witch, like no other religious practitioner that I’m aware of, must study her environment carefully, and attune her life to it … The learning is multi-disciplinary, and feels almost as if one was studying a textbook written by a poet … it has that sense of quiet wonder about it, supported by education, knowledge and, above all, wisdom.”
In fact, the whole series was structured along the lines of a distance learning course, so that any would-be traditional witch had a step by step guide to follow. Traditional Witchcraft for Urban Living (originally published as Mean Streets Witchcraft) is the first in the series and as the title suggests, aimed at the majority of pagans who live in an urban environment rather than insisting that a witch must live in the country before they can learn about traditional British Old Craft. The second step is revealed in Traditional Witchcraft for the Seashore that teaches us how to understand and work with those natural tides within our own environment, even if we don’t live by the sea. Step three, Traditional Witchcraft for Fields and Hedgerows, covers what most of us would think of in terms of traditional Craft, and brings us back into the comfort zone where we feel safe and secure – before step four casts us back out into the more hostile world of Traditional Witchcraft for the Woods and Forests: the magical energies differing quite considerably between these four environments.
TRADITIONAL WITCHCRAFT FOR URBAN LIVING and TRADITIONAL WITCHCRAFT FOR THE SEASHORE, Mélusine Draco (Moon Books/John Hunt Publishing Ltd www.moon-books.net £9.99/US 16.95 each. l43pp and 149pp) . The author of these books was an initiate of the late Bob Clay-Egerton’s traditional Coven of the Scales and has been a practising occultist, magical teacher and writer on esoteric subjects for over twenty years. These two books are the first in a series on modern traditional witchcraft for absolute beginners. Traditional Witchcraft for Urban Living, as the title suggests, is a guide to being a witch in a town or city environment while still connecting with the natural world, elemental forces and the land. The second book is for those who live near or often visit the coast and wish to commune with the sea and its energies. You will not find any invocations to Cemnunos and Ceridwen or the ‘Wiccan Rede’ here. Also, although the books are written in a pagan context, all the charms used are Christianised ones as found in historical witchcraft and folk magic. Both books are written in a down-to-earth style with a commonsensical approach firmly rooted in the folk traditions and seasonal lore of the British Isles. They are very much like the basic beginner’s primers written by Marian Green of Quest magazine and are recommended.
Michael Howard - The Cauldron
The ‘Traditional Witchcraft’ series provides varied information about what it means to be a practising witch in modern times. In places, it feels like a guide, or self-help book. But there is much more to it than that. What strikes me is the amount of science running through the book. To understand nature is to live as a part of nature, and ultimately to become one with its changing patterns and cycles, to synchronise one’s own psychic or magical energy with natural tidal forces and the elements. So a witch, like no other religious practitioner that I’m aware of, must study her environment carefully, and attune her life to it. For a witch devoted to the sea and seashore, that involves learning much about the tides, weather, flora and fauna of the coastline, lunar cycles, as well as the folklore and myths of the sea ...The learning is multi-disciplinary, and feels almost as if one was studying a textbook written by a poet ... But it has that sense of quiet wonder about it, supported by education, knowledge and, above all, wisdom.
Andy Lloyd Book Reviews
“The majority of books I encounter on the subject of witchcraft and Wicca fall into one of two categories: they are written for rural witches, or for urban witches, as though those are the only two options. If you believe the stories of how things were in the “bad old days, ” witches were seldom found in either of those two settings. They were most often found in the transitional (or “liminal”) areas – the last house in the village just before you entered the countryside, or the first house after such a point. They weren’t living in the wilds, but they weren’t comfortable in the daily to-do of the village centre either.
This book addresses another transitional space: the seashore. If you live on the coast, you are aware of that particular space between high- and low-tide: it isn’t always land and it isn’t always water, but it shares the characteristics of both. You know the effects the tides have on daily life (even though you probably are only concerned with the tides of the water not with atmospheric and terrestrial tides) , as well as how they help to sculpt the environment in which you live. You are undoubtedly aware of the winds and their potential benefits and hazards.
This is not a book for those who are new to witchcraft. In fact, even some folks who have spend years in the Craft may find themselves wondering what they have stumbled into. Within the first dozen pages of the book I found myself exposed to ideas I hadn’t considered in years (even though I had been exposed to them in theory during my early involvement with the Craft) ...” Mike Gleason - Spiral Nature online magazine.
Few are fortunate to live near enough to the sea to use the shoreline as a regular magical working area. And yet for the natural witch, born and bred by the sea, the beach and rocky shore are equally as magical as the inland woods and hills of more traditional approaches to witchcraft. The author takes us on a magical journey along the seashore and reveals how to work with the natural oceanic tides and energies. Learn how to harness the powers of the Deep, and collect flotsam and jetsam for use as ritual tools.
Author's Notes: Melusine Draco originally trained in the magical arts of traditional British Old Craft with Bob and Meriem Clay-Egerton and is the author of numerous popular books on magic and traditional British Old Craft.. Traditional Witchcraft for the Seashore is the second in the series - if you have any questions relating to any issues raised in the book contact the author at:
Where To Buy: Amazon
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