Sunday, September 11, 2005

The Dodman's Craft

Before there was an Internet--back around 1980--Mike Nichols of Kansas City published a lively Pagan 'zine. He has been writing and teaching classes on the Craft for decades.

Nowadays, as Wren Walker of The Witches' Voice says in her foreword, if you do a Web search on "Samhain" or "Midsummer," your results page will feature "Mike Nichols." A lot.

Or you could just pick up his new work, The Witches' Sabbats, and get it all in one place in the convenient, battery-free, cross-platform book interface, published by Acorn Guild Press.

The writing is witty--Despite the bad publicity generated by Thomas Tryon's novel, Harvest Home is the pleasantest of holidays--and in some places, such as his astrological reading of the story of Llew and Blodeuwedd, has echoes of Robert Graves' search for deeper meanings in myth and folklore.

And it's indexed.

Contemporary Paganism is often referred to as "nature religion," but in practice that most often is a religion of what I call "cosmic nature," in other words, an attempt to attune oneself with cosmic or planetary cycles, most often through seasonal ritual. The Witches' Sabbats is a state-of-the-art handbook for practitioners. It even includes a chapter on building or interpreting outdoor alignments with standing stones or poles.



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