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Deena W. Butta "Priestess in the House of Books" RSS Feed (Chicago IL USA)

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Provenance Press's Guide To The Wiccan Year: A Year Round Guide to Spells, Rituals, and Holiday Celebrations
Provenance Press's Guide To The Wiccan Year: A Year Round Guide to Spells, Rituals, and Holiday Celebrations
by Judy Ann Olsen
Edition: Paperback
Price: $9.93
93 used & new from $3.56

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars adding the stellar dimensioin to your celebrations, March 15, 2009
In The Wiccan Year, Rev. Judy Ann Nock, Fellowship of Isis priestess of the Iseum of Urania Celesta and the Iseum of the Muses, has written a practical guide to the cycle of the year, with a focus on the star energy of each season.

The preface describes the development of Judy's idea for a book based on the Wiccan wheel of the year with its branches in the stars and its roots in the old agrarian seasonal festivals.

This is an evolutionary concept, which will be especially meaningful to members of the Fellowship of Isis, as it reflects the continuum of energy and consciousness that connects the core of the earth and the farthest reaches of the cosmos, as shown in the spiral galactic glyph of the Fellowship of Isis. The Wiccan Year also embodies ideas found in the FOI liturgy cycle Psyche, a collection of psychic journeys to a variety of star systems and constellations.

The seasonal and celestial events in this book are based in the Northern hemisphere. The constellations discussed in this book describe groupings of stars that are visible overhead, or on the horizon, at the time a festival occurs, as well as an overview of the zodiacal signs through which the sun travels during each season..

Each chapter is devoted to a single solar or cross-quarter festival. The quality of that time of year is described, and very good historical background and interpretation of the festival's significance is provided. Celestial events occurring during that time in the yearly cycle are pointed out, and their mythological and legendary associations explained. Each chapter also includes meditations for each festival based on what is happening in nature, star meanings, and traditional meanings. There are also rituals attuned to the events and stars of the season. The astrological significance of the festival is also included. There are also charms, spells, practical crafts, recipes, and more, for each festival.

There is a chapter devoted to the moons in each month, with a meditation for each full moon.

The appendix includes tables of correspondences for the Sabbats and the Zodiac, with dates for festivals up to 2020, and astronomical information about the seasons. There is also a great bibliography and glossary of term.

This is a great handbook for those new to Wicca and Paganism, as it provides high quality, balanced information and observations. Those who have been in the Craft for many years will find the refreshing new ideas and perspectives provided in this handy manual to provide another dimension of meaning to a beloved celebration.

Llewellyn's 2008 Witches' Companion: An Almanac for Everyday Living (Annuals - Witches' Companion)
Llewellyn's 2008 Witches' Companion: An Almanac for Everyday Living (Annuals - Witches' Companion)
by Llewellyn
Edition: Paperback
48 used & new from $0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars companionable and diverse, March 5, 2009
Llewellyn's 2008 Witches' Companion: An Almanac for Everyday Living (Llewellyn's Witches Companion)

Witches' Companion: an Almanac for Everyday Living, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-7387-0560-6

I was hoping that Llewellyn would produce a Witches' Companion for 2009. The good news is that the 2010 edition will be published in August 2009.

I have immensely enjoyed The Witches' Companion for 2008. It will continue to be pertinent and enjoyable in years to come.

This is an excellent collection of essays and articles in a small handy format that travels well...perfect for a Companion! I think of it as a sort of "Smaller Wiccan Yearbook," because what it contains is the essence of current and timely issues for a given year.

The articles cover issues, lifestyle, and tips in a nice blend of philosophical and practical. I especially enjoyed the article The Queen's Quarter of the Fourfold Goddess by Mama Donna Henes. I also found The Zen Pagan Path by Sandra Kynes to be thoughtful and inspirational, in addition to providing encouragement for incorporating spiritual practices of diverse traditions in a meaningful way.

Simple Blessings by Susan "Moonwriter" Peznecker is extremely brief and extremely motivational. The Life Cycle of Magickal Groups, a longer article by Lisa McSherry, is an informative article about group dynamics that includes practical group exercises. The Star Queen by Calantirniel was an awesome discovery, as I have been devoted to this being for years. Every essay is a gem!

Feelings of understanding, connection, and even community emanate from the pages of this friendly little book.

There is a total of 23 diverse essays, of different lengths and for different audiences, providing a great cross-section of Wiccan and Pagan society and thought.

A convenient feature is the lunar calendar which begins and ends with March. For each month, there is a page of blank squares accompanied by a meditation exploring the essence of that month. There are also lists of void-of-course times, eclipses, and full moons listed by their traditional names, with their dates and times. There are a few blank pages for notes...and this is the kind of booklet that will evoke much note-taking!

A series of Witches' Companions over the years would provide an array of snapshots of the character of those times, especially as there are opportunities to personalize the pages.

You will want to acquire the 2008 Witches' Companion as your memory book for 2008. It will continue to be valuable.

The Complete Book of Spiritual Astrology
The Complete Book of Spiritual Astrology
by Per Henrik Gullfoss
Edition: Paperback
Price: $19.70
69 used & new from $5.24

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars love this book, could not put it down, March 1, 2009
The Complete Book of Spiritual Astrology
By Per Henrik Gullfoss
Llewellyn c2008
ISBN 978-0-7387-1258-1

February 26, 2009

It has been a long time since I read an astrology book that was so uplifting, so rewarding and enjoyable to read, and so hard to put down.

The Complete Book of Spiritual Astrology is extremely practical on the spiritual level. It contains all the guidelines you need to achieve your highest potential and fulfill your soul's destiny.

It does not describe your appearance...or help you choose a career...or give you tips about romance...or tell you what to expect from your investments. Rather, it gives you tools to make you more aware, and to help you attain a new dimension of reality and level of consciousness.

The author strives "to give experienced astrologers a completely new and amazingly simple yet precise way of using astrology. And it will give new astrologers a wonderful and fantastic introduction to the real essence of astrology as humanity's tool on its voyage toward awareness and awakening."

Both beginning and advanced astrologers will benefit. New astrologers receive clear and sensible explanations of astrological terms and concepts. Advanced astrologers gain new and original insight.

The author defines what a planet in each element, quality, and sign needs, what it must do, and how it must express itself, in order to live a fulfilling and satisfying life.

For example, we are given new words for thinking about earth, air, fire, and water that express their highest spiritual essence. Think of Earth as "Beauty;" think of Water as "Love;" think of Fire as "Joy;" and of Air, as "Wisdom." And you will begin to understand the new ways of thinking to which you will be introduced in this book.

There are step by step descriptions of how each element, quality, aspect, and sign functions; and what the planet residing in a house must do to fulfill itself.

Philosophical concepts relating to astrology, such as fate and free will, are touched upon.

This book can help you to re-interpret everything in your chart in order to achieve personal inner integration, through an understanding of their significance on a more spiritual level of reality..

This book is valuable for helping us rise above the apparent conflict and dualities of our lives and our psyches. We are ways of thinking about these things in a new and productive way.

For example, energy can be thought of as electrical or as magnetic; as particles, or as waves.. In one case, attraction is highlighted, while in the other, expansion is highlighted. This concept of 2 basic actions of energy is applied to houses, elements, qualities, signs, and polarities. They represent the inner and outer, the soul and ego aspects, which must be integrated. This entire book is a re-interpretation and re-examination of astrology in these unique terms that can help us think about it from a higher, more spiritual level of reality and consciousness.. .

Throughout the book are suggestion for how to deal productively with the astrological tools we were given by enabling us to understand their nature, strength, and purpose in a new way.

Enlightenment through each element is discussed. Guidelines are provided for what we can do to master the nature of each element and quality, and move forward with it. The qualities have to do with power, understanding, and transformation. New and original keywords are provided to help us think about these in new, more spiritual, even more alchemical ways.
What does lack of an element signify? How can we deal with that? How should we deal with combinations of predominant elements? What is your soul seeking to experience and express?

The horoscope is a description of an integrated unity. This book tells how to integrate those forces and express them the highest way possible.

There is an interesting discussion of the meaning of the movement of the sun through the houses, and why their order goes in one direction while the sun moves through them in another.

Another interesting discussion involves the real meaning of the midheaven and the nadir of the chart. What is feared and repressed, and why? What is the soul level of what must be worked with?

Ascendants and descendants are presented in a way that clarifies how to avoid unrealistic expectations of the self and others. How do you filter your realities? What do you long for from others, or project onto them, and what do they expect of or project onto you? More importantly, what can you do about it? This is described in terms of shadow and dream (the best and worst expectations of self and other you can imagine or project) and how to integrate these in a productive way.

Having a certain element on your ascendant means you have that element in 3 specific houses... what does that mean for those areas of your life? What should y strive for? It also means you have other elements in 3 other specific houses...what is the impact of this on those areas of your life, and how can you best handle it? What can you expect, and how can you respond in order to attain the highest, most productive level of functioning?

What does each planet really mean? And what does it seek in each house, sign, element, and quality? What kind of energy is expressed in the aspects between the planets, and how can knowing this help your spirit achieve its spiritual destiny?

Aspects create a specific kind of energy exchange and relationship between the forces in your psyche represented by the planets. How can you use this to raise your consciousness to a higher level? What does a waxing as opposed to a waning aspect signify for the way and order in which you approach meaningful experiences?

Another fascinating way of thinking about planets is their classification into three main categories: the inner planets, consisting of Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, and Mars; the middle planets Jupiter and Saturn; and the outer planets, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. Aspects between the inner, or personal planets, signify a need to clarify issues on the individual or ego level. However, aspects between the inner and outer planets, or between middle and outer planets, signify issues and purposes on quite different levels of consciousness. It is very important to be aware of the different levels and soul purpose in order for personal integration as well as the soul's purpose to be achieved.

Very advanced and esoteric concepts are admirably and effortlessly handled in this book, making them easy to comprehend and assimilate.

There is so much more. These are just a few examples that illustrate the special approach this book takes.

I can't praise this book highly enough. It will provide excellent ideas for both personal and group work.

Mudras: Yoga in Your Hands
Mudras: Yoga in Your Hands
by Gertrud Hirschi
Edition: Paperback
Price: $13.04
94 used & new from $5.99

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a great intro to mudras, September 4, 2005
This is a wonderful introduction for the beginner. The photos are large enough to see what the model is doing, and are accompanied by clearly written, easy-to-understand instructions. There is also an overview of the subject that tells how mudras fit into the discipline of yoga, healing, and metaphysics. 52 mudras for attaining physical, mental, and spiritual well being are described in this book.

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