The Passing of Isaac Bonewits: My Perspective
Article ID: 14116
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 1,200
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Author: Brid's Closet [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: August 29th. 2010
Times Viewed: 1,875
Isaac came into my life approximately 2 years ago. I had always known about Isaac from reading his books and at one time, belonged to his Blackdirt group, when he lived in Warwick, NY. I wrote an email to him and asked about his services and the classes that he taught. I have a little, but very busy metaphysical store, here in Cornwall N.Y., and really wanted him to teach here. Isaac and his lovely wife Phaedra live about an hour from me, so one day, Isaac and Phae decided to take a drive up to see my store and meet the community. We wound up going to dinner and having a most wonderful conversation about the pagan community and the experiences that both Isaac and Phae have had over the years. That was it for me! His humor got to me right away. A perfect fit with this community! Almost immediately, he started to do readings and teach his “Real Magic” course at my store.
Isaac facilitated ritual for us, at our Beltane festival and quickly became part of our family. He would come up just to chat with everyone. He became sort of a mentor for me. The information and lessons that both Isaac and Phaedra have given me; are priceless. Isaac also would help me as a friend. We would go and get sushi and talk for hours about family. I have 3 sons and it was nice to have Isaac's point of view. He has his own son Arthur, so he would tell me all about his experiences as a father. He became a “rock” for me. He even had his own key to the store, and slept there once or twice. There is a rather large community here, and he would always give me advise on what to do, how to be a leader, and how NOT to go crazy at times.
We went to The Starwood Festival together (2009) . I was teaching my classes on the tarot, and Isaac was teaching his class based on his wonderful book “Real Magic”. It was a wonderful time, but going home was another matter. The pop-up trailer that I had blew a tire and destroyed the rim on the way home. I think we were about 3 or hours away from Starwood at this point. My pop-up is an old one and could not find the correct rim to fit my trailer, so all of us (Isaac, my husband, me and a friend) , wound up staying in a motel for the night. Nothing like a night of drinking beer and telling stories, all night long! In the morning, Isaac was already blessing the pop-up in order for us to have a safe ride home!
I noticed that Isaac wasn't feeling that well after a while. He would fall sleep a little more then usual. There are two couches in the store and he had his favorite. He liked to take a little nap from time to time. My husband brought in a bunk bed type of mattress for Isaac to relax on. Things started to change little by little. He was uncomfortable. His stomach would bother him.
This was when I heard the news. Isaac told me about his doctor’s appointment. He was so optimistic and upbeat, even though they suspected that he had cancer. Cancer is strong in my family so my heart broke when I head this news. He was put on radiation and chemotherapy. Even through all of this, he shaved his head and put it on the Internet with a big smile on his face! At his point, he was not coming up as much. He was very tired and was having trouble making the drive. Isaac was in and out of the hospital, and Phaedra was working day and night, and was also having to take care of Isaac.
Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone came to stay with us (to teach workshops and to facilitate this years Beltane ritual) , and Isaac really wanted to spend time with them. When Isaac called to say that he was too tired to see them, it really hit me. Isaac was really having a hard time with the chemotherapy and really needed care 'round the clock. Arthur (Isaac's son) came in to stay with them to help take care of his dad.
A fundraiser and auction had been organized to help Phaedra and Isaac out with their mountain of medical bills. A wonderful lady named Tracey called me for information on how to organize such an event. Isaac attended this event with Phae. He looked quite frail and tired, but even then, it was good to see him. Tracey has now become a good friend. She would go to visit Isaac and Phaedra to see if everything was ok. If Isaac was in the hospital and I could not reach him, Tracey would give me the scoop. It felt good to have such good person supporting Isaac and Phae.
He slipped into a coma about two weeks ago. I visited Phae and Isaac at their home in order to say goodbye. He passed away in his sleep August 12, 2010 at 8am in the morning. I called Phaedra to find out what she needed me to do. She asked me to come the next day. My husband and I took the drive down to see what we could do. Isaac's siblings were all there. That is when I found out about the cremation and that Phae wanted us to be there for her. It was a very small and private affair. One that I will never forget.
Isaac-thank you for the time you spent with my community and me. Thank you for all that you have done for the pagan/wiccan/druid communities. Thank you for all of your humor and laughter. Thank you for all the love that is in your heart and thank you for your friendship. You will never be forgotten-heck-it's not possible… because I have all of those silly pirate pictures of you on the Internet and at the store!
With much love Isaac-I am proud to say that I knew thee well!
Location: Cornwall, New York
Author's Profile: To learn more about Brid's Closet - Click HERE
Bio: Bio: I am a mom to 3 sons, a dog, 2 parrots and a bunny. Own a metaphysical shop named Brid's Closet in Cornwall, NY. A 3rd degree priestess in the Alexandrian tradition of Wicca, a 3rd degree Reiki practitioner, a professional tarot reader and teaches the tarot at various stores in NY State, taught the tarot at the Starwood Festival in 2007, 2009 and 2010 and is a pipe carrier in the Sun Bear tribe. Bernadette has also written articles for The Witches Voice in the past called What Does It Mean To Be A Pagan In Today's World and The Good, the Bad and the Tarot reader. I also write for the Sacred Mists blog, and runs The Newburgh and Cornwall Witches Meetup, and facilitate two festivals in Cornwall, The Winter Solstice/Yule Ball and The Beltaine festival.
Other Articles: Brid's Closet has posted 4 additional articles- View them?
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