About the Author
Ms Ly de Angeles is an internationally recognised author winning awards for both her visionary fiction and film. She has a varied and highly successful background producing and directing stage and street theatre, conducts private consultations with up-and-coming authors/screenwriters and is a freelance editor.Most widely known for her book "Witchcraft Theory and Practice" de Angeles was first published in 1987. She has had thirteen books released worldwide to date.
Ly's main area of study over the past twenty years has been the history of the usurpation of indigenous people through invasion, subsequent colonization, and the history and mythology of Ireland and Britain in particular. She is known to be very outspoken on matters pertaining to the sustainability and guardianship of earth and the rights of all species to self-determination.
Ly currently (2013) lives in Melbourne, Australia and is preparing to release the expanded and much anticipated 2002 sell out The Feast of Flesh and Spirit. She is writing her memoir Bednobs and Bastards/Memoirs of a Witch Queen and working towards a PhD.
For full bio lydeangeles.com
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
Witchcraft in a Noisy World
And the sign said, The words of the prophets
are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls.
And whispered in the sounds of silence.
-Simon and Garfunkel, The Sound of Silence
We are bombarded, daily, by the Great God Logos-the Word.
I listen to Lee Lin Chin or Mary Kostakidas (SBS World News) as they
tell of the (edited) events of the day and the events' current implications
And that's it, isn't it? The news is all about people: what people do to
people; what the weather is doing to people; how people are creating the
greenhouse effect; how many people and their homes are affected by fire,
flood, famine, drought; or else it's about the economy (another species
that is as sick or as healthy as people).
And the news is mostly tragic.
When you hear or read or talk about the news of the world, do you
fear? Do you anticipate?
What do you talk about with your family? What do you talk about
with your friends or your peers? What do you talk about with your
lovers? How often do you agree or disagree? How often do you agree or
disagree with each other regarding the opinions of others?
It's important to consider what we say, how we say it, why we say what
we do; it's important to consider what we listen to, why we listen to it.
It's always personal, you know-our connectedness to the Big Picture.
But so often the Big Picture is perceived as recent and not in the context
of its foreverness.
We're assaulted by advertising, by investment strategies, by the requirement to assist the economy by consuming, by a seeming world-need to achieve, strive, guard against, impress, gain, be entertained, and to fit in. It all becomes quite deafening.
Logos (words) trigger war and they implore for peace. They can soothe
or they can interfere. They can be spoken or written for the sake of being
spoken or written. They can manipulate, but they can also educate.
I love words, but I deplore too many of them or (often) the ways in
which they are used. Ah! But that's not the fault of the words themselves,
is it? That blame can be laid at the feet of those who use them without
care as to the effect they could have! And it's because of who those people are and the Mythos through which they perceive life that we cannot see eye to eye.
· The Seen-Real: first world-the day to day, Otherworld
· The Unseen-Real: second world (until we're there)
· The Seen-Real: second world also (when we're in it)
Mythos is a plethora of many worlds all interconnected. People can (and
do) inhabit more than one world: the guy down on the floor of the stock
exchange jabbing at the air and yelling can be fully immersed in the
Mythos of that world. Then he goes home. He eats a little, then showers
and changes into his ritual garments, casts a Circle with his athame, and
transports himself into his other world; his other Mythos . . . . and this world is not the same as the first world mentioned above. They overlap, surely, and each affects the other. What is the same is one who walks between them-the one who travels both of them. When this person enters into the Mythos of magic, he or she enters into a world where time, as is generally thought, does not exist.
Mythos can only ever be experienced and understood as a result of
that experience. It changes us . . . and words don't matter. Logos can assist us to access the Worlds of Mythos (which is what this book's about), but words themselves can never take you there. You go there because you already co-exist with these worlds, and Logos can act as the mirror into which you peer to seek your own reflection.
The second world-the Mythos of magic (which you will find throughout
this book is called draíocht)-is as experiential as the world of the floor
of the stock exchange to the man who knows them both, but the traveler
who walks the second world journeys from the Seen-Real (the stock
exchange) and contemplates the Unseen-Real (the image of the second
world), whereby it becomes the Seen-Real (because he's experiencing it).
What happens to us, as a result of traveling between one Mythos and
another, is that we change. Not only do we change, but the world (that
others think of, perhaps, as the only world in existence) changes also. It's
as though we trail filaments of the places through which we travel back
into the day to day, affecting it and changing it a little at a time.
Creativity, in all its many guises and expressions, is the result of these
journeys into the Unseen-Real and of bridging Mythos to Mythos.
Do you ever wonder why so many books that were written in the past
and claim to be futuristic, fantasy, or science fiction actually, from the
viewpoint of the present, seem prophetic?
This book is essentially about accessing the experience of Mythos.
Mythos is a way of expressing and experiencing forever in a time and
place scenario. That's easy to do because you live forever and experience
everything. One small part of living forever is the body of the person you
Do you know that you've been alive Forever? That the memory of Forever is encoded into every cell of the body of you? That the hydrogen
atom, the iron atom, the mitochondrial DNA that expresses the pattern of
you, now, and the flora and fauna living and breeding in your gut and on
your skin (and everywhere else on/in you) has lived forever; has always
You can access that Forever, you know. You can remember. Your
humanness might be the merging of many cultures, many bloodlines,
and through the study of the many-colored tapestry of culture, history,
myth, and legend, you'll see yourself; you'll feel the connection-maybe
to just one or two places, maybe to many, and perhaps to certain specific
myths and legends.
A human being . . . experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings,
as separated from the rest-a kind of optical delusion of onsciousness.
This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal
desires and to affections for a few persons nearest to us.
Forever and the Song of Earth
These are your inheritance, you within the Songline, you upon the
journey of Imramma.
This connection is to the Song of the Earth and to our place within the
Song. Our awareness of this Song is very, very important-and it hasn't
any words. No Logos. It is Earth's (unheard-with-ears) Song of Forever
and it can only ever be felt or sensed.
Words can mimic the Song (by way of their harmony and placement)
or they can be dust and discord.
The way each person lives is the way he or she merges with the Song.
The way of magic is about merging with the Song, hearing it and acting
The Song is nonjudgmental. It has no moralistic premise or attitude. It
neither condemns nor condones, is neither good nor bad, it just is,
and therefore it is the truth.
People often try to interpret the Song according to pre-set parameters
or previously considered philosophies, and this is a bias that's very difficult
to drop; it is, however, worth both knowing and dropping.
There are limited evaluations of right and wrong (what the world of
people is doing/what the world of nature is doing-somehow dividing
them into two separate, often opposing categories), and there is the unlimited Big Picture (life forever-suns and stars and space beyond measure).
Time-out to contemplate the Big Picture?
You can realize that personally-individually-you (we) are probably
irrelevant. Ah! So then, this being realized, you (we) can get on with a life
of living well, of doing what is considered important, regardless of recognition or the lack of it, because you might as well!
No one can really tell you what's right or wrong; you can't not know!
You do know! For yourself, for those around you, for life itself, which is so intensely precious. You know it all innately. . . because once you've contemplated (and sort of understood) the Big Picture, forever, the Song, how Logos operates, your life in the unlimited Worlds of Mythos, you can make conscious choices. Magic is all about conscious choices, walking the many worlds, fixing what you can fix (because it feels innately right to do so), changing what you can change (ditto), and it is all about walking with the gods (when you've discovered what they are).
Of Gods and Goddesses
Witchcraft reinforces, in our culture, the honor and awareness of a Goddess (for lack of a better word). This means all kinds of things to many different people, but nothing even remotely limited to a human construct to me. Witchcraft is also, most assuredly, aware of God (for lack of any other suitable analogy), although not in the way that most religions are. I do not personally like either the word goddess or the word god, as these words are loaded. Preconceptions are consistently able to reinforce stereotyping, and it can be so easy to fall into age-worn patterns of externalization or exclusivity. We can call them by these two words, but I suggest that we do not become complacent.
Throughout this book I w...