Let’s talk books!
This is a dangerous subject for a book-a-holic. Admittedly, not recovering. If I am to be addicted to anything, books are the safest. Although, in the far crevices of my mind. I see myself dying in an avalanche of badly stacked books. Me, in my overstuffed wing chair, lost in the latest Penczak book. In the fun, warped part of my mind… I find that thought comforting.
When I first discovered books on ‘Witchy’ things, I was sure I’d stumbled into a secret library. In a way, I had. The section was dingy, dark, lost in the furthest corner of the library. In an overtly biblical bible state, the accumulating dust was no surprise. It brought my allergies to my attention quickly though. Ah, the smell of dusty libraries and old books. Still a love of mine.
Once I discovered the secret library. I read everything voraciously! The librarian became my best friend. Even the libraries aged plastic bricks, they lovingly called chairs, became bearably comfortable. Funny the things you remember.
I don’t remember the titles of the books I read. Most of them were on the Witch hunts. Handy at the time, since most of my research papers lent themselves to the subject. There was no Silver Ravenwolf, or Christopher Penczac. Scott Cunningham was a name I’d never heard. Raymond Buckland was yet undiscovered.
Then summer came. I could no longer hideout in the school library. A summer job kept me from the local library. I worked an abundance of hours to avoid being home. I was different than the rest of my family. I was okay with it….them… not so much. The ‘conversion’ was always in process. That was okay too.
Curious by nature I look at everything as a learning adventure. Plus, church meant time to hang out with cousins and other family. There were some wild times. I tried different things. Singing solos for church services. I found I wasn’t really good at it and graciously resolved to never do it again. I decided puppet shows were the way to go.
So, I started writing my own puppet shows. I wrote them better than I performed them. Church patrons were entertained though. I couldn’t ask for more. In the mish-mash of it all I did tend to challenge the pastor. To many questions, not enough blind faith. Our conversations would end with him shaking his head and quietly smiling. I will always remember him with fondness. Throughout it all I never shook his faith. I still find it admirable.
In many ways, he was the inspiration for my search for self. My delving into religions and spiritual practices to find “The One!” I’ve tried on many over the years. I always come back to Witchcraft. The herbs, the nature, the ritual, the connection, the peace….and the books!
I’ve often thought about the books I would recommend to a novice. Where would I have started had I had access to hundreds of books? I’m sure I would have started with any book containing “Spell” in the title. Spell writing, spell casting always my favorite things!
If it was a youth who would ask for recommendations. I would start them out with Pagans and Christians: The Personal Spiritual Experience by Gus DiZerega. Largely because of the area I reside in but, also because knowledge is strength. The comparison of the two spiritual paths within DiZerega’s book lends to a solid foundation. It also gives you good fodder to fighting the perceived stereotype perpetuated by the church….and media….and government offices….and TV…and Oh the list!
Then… I would recommend Christopher Penczack books. Any of the Witchcraft series: Inner Temple of Witchcraft, Outer Temple of Witchcraft, etc. He provides not only historical data, but scientifically founded data. They are worth the time to truly delve into them.
I’d throw in the Witches bible, and Buckland’s Complete book of Witchcraft. Any of Buckland’s books would be a good addition to learning. Let’s not forget Witchcraft: Theory and Practice by Ly De Angeles. And…. So many books!
If you truly study the books listed. If you spend the year and a day on Christopher’s books. There is years’ worth of reading there. The last one I would throw in is Power Spellcraft for life: The Art of Crafting and Casting for Positive Change by Arin Murphy-Hiscock. I have worn out multiple copies over the years.
Just remember, this is only what I would recommend but, I am a history and science person. Everyone has their own individual path. There are hundreds, thousands of fantastic books out there. I would caution you though to choose your books wisely. Research the author. Just as there are fantastic books. There are also glaringly horrible books. I’ve purchased some to show others ‘what not to buy.’
Relish your path. Choose wisely. And above all…make the journey uniquely yours!
Blessed By my Friends!