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The Elements of the Goddess (The "Elements of..." Series) Paperback – December, 1997

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Paperback, December, 1997
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Product Details

  • Series: The "Elements of..." Series
  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Element Books Ltd (December 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1862041474
  • ISBN-13: 978-1862041479
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.2 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,354,339 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Hello! I'm Caitlin Matthews. I live in Oxford, England with my partner, John Matthews and assorted cats who, despite our best efforts, can't abide each other and live on different floors of our small house.

I'm primarily known for being the author of many books including Singing the Soul Back Home, Mabon and the Guardians of Celtic Britain, Psychic Shield, and Sophia, Goddess of Wisdom. I write in the fields of metaphysical non-fiction, poetry, fiction, folkstory and myth, as well as writing books for children. I'm known for my research into the Celtic and ancestral traditions, and the ways in which I provoke exploration of the creative metaphysical field, and how we can apply it to our spiritual path.

My latest books include The Celtic Wisdom Oracle, which is about the ancestors and my Enchanted Lenormand Oracle, with Virginia Lee, is published in 2013.

With John Matthews, I've written the Encyclopedia of Celtic Wisdom, the Arthurian Tarot and Walkers Between the Worlds, as well as the StoryWorld series of cards and books for storytellers of all ages, which started coming out in 2009. Our latest collaboration is The Steampunk Tarot: Wisdom from the Gods of the Machine where retro-history meets alternative futures in the world of the Imperium whose dynamic vehicles and wisdom is depicted on the cards. This has its own dedicated website on which I also write a monthly tarot blog.

Although I'm the author of over sixty books, most of my work is oral rather than written. As a teacher of ancestral, shamanic and metaphysical traditions, I go all over the world, working with communities and spiritual institutions. With John Matthews, and my dear colleague Felicity Wombwell, I co-founded The Foundation for Inspirational and Oracular Studies, which is dedicated to the mythic, oracular and sacred arts. Our FiOS shamanic training programme teaches students the ancestral wisdom and healing arts as living sacred traditions in which we still engage.

As a singer, I play Celtic & medieval harps, sruti and psaltery. My CDs include Deep Well in the Wild Wood: Songs from the Place Beyond and the latest, Earth's Own Heart: Songs from the Faery Hills is forthcoming. I was the Pictish language originator and song-writer of Song of the Exile for the 2004 Jerry Bruckheimer film King Arthur and I appear frequently on international radio and television.

For the last 23 years, I've had a shamanic practice in Oxford dedicated to healing soul sickness and ancestral fragmentation. I use my voice to help open the way between the worlds, to sing the soul's essential nature, tracking it through the client's story and bringing it homeward, with the help of spirit allies who have chosen to work with me.

I'm currently working on The Book of Ancestral Welcome: a book to help us come into good relationship with our ancestors. I believe that being in commuinion with our ancestors and gifting spirits is essential for the wellbeing of our world, and lies at the root of war and peace.

If you want to know more about my courses, events and forthcoming books, you are cordially invited to visit

For new readers of my work, there is no 'one book' that conveys all that I teach, but the following practical books may be a helpful guide for you to begin somewhere:

Walkers Between Worlds - for a grounding in where our spiritual traditions arose.
Singing the Soul Back Home - for a guide on how we come into come relationship with our gifting spirits
Celtic Visions - for understanding of the Celtic seership traditions
Psychic Shield - for those who need a friendly guide to how the universe and ourselves rub off each other and how we can do it more harmoniously

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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By DE on August 11, 2005
Format: Paperback
Matthews, who has published over 30 titles on the Western Way, Celtic spirituality and goddess worship, can be counted on for consistently thoughtful, original, scholarly and yet immediately readable books. While this book in the compact "Elements of" series is not one of her best known, it nevertheless rewards careful study and re-reading. Though it is intended as an "introductory" text, there is much here that a more experienced devotee can benefit from as well. In addition to providing numerous stories from many cultures that reveal valuable insights and paths to the Goddess, Matthews includes exercises, visualizations, images, questions and challenges to help readers find their own way. "There is no virtue in the written word unless it can be translated into real experience." She also notes that the challenge of working "within existent Goddess religions" makes us "realize that there may be symbolic and cultural problems which we had not considered. It takes a very long time to be symbolically at home within a religion whose cultural basis is different from our own." And with her characteristic insight and balance, the author disposes of much careless thinking that confuses gender, sex and polarity. "Energies, by nature, have no gender: love, strength, insight, justice or protection being neither more nor less suitable to men than to women." What I find of greatest value is Matthews' discussion of nine potent aspects of the Goddess: Energizer, Measurer, Protector, Initiator, Challenger, Deliverer, Weaver, Preserver, and Empowerer.Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Kmt Fisher on January 14, 2008
Format: Paperback
There isn't a great deal to add to DE's detailed review - I only want to say that this was one of the first books I ever bought about paganism and the Goddess, (nearly twenty years ago!) and it has been an inspiring work that I have read again and again over the years. It's a great pity that it's currently out of print.
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