pamper

Interview with Arin Murphy- Hiscock, Author of The Witch’s Book of Self-Care: Magical Ways to Pamper, Soothe, and Care for Your Body and Spirit

March, 2019

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this timely book and was thrilled to be able to interview Ms. Murphy-Hiscock….

The Interview

Robin Fennelly (RF): What brought you to the Craft? and Can you tell us a little about the Black Forest Clan and your work as High Priestess. 

Arin Murphy-Hiscock (AMH): I discovered the Craft in my twenties when I did research for a collaborative storytelling project. I was invited to join BFC in 2000, and have been working with them ever since. We have a small coven here in Montreal that takes self-care very seriously. I don’t teach workshops as much as I used to; writing books has taken the place of in-person teaching. I reach a lot more people this way!

RF: You’ve crafted a very comprehensive book, chock-full of information and ideas. Were there any specific events that inspired you to write this book? 

AMH: Not specific so much as a general theme that kept surfacing in my life. I have a tendency to work very hard and I am bad at taking time for myself or seeing that I’m headed for a collapse. That has a lot of repercussions. My publisher suggested I write something along the spiritual self-care line, and I was struck by how timely it was in my own life. I got to examine my coping mechanisms and isolate the ways in which I handled stress, and explain them in a way that helped me as well as could help others. It also had the associated consequence of a divine two-by-four, the effects of which I’m still handling.

RF: …..” The practice of magic seeks to establish or balance connection between an individual and the environment. If a spiritual aspect is added, then magic also seeks to balance or maintain the connection between the individual and the Divine.”.. You speak of magical practice and spiritual practice. Do you see these as two separate streams? How do you see these as part of healing the disconnect we have to self-care?

AMH: I do see them as separate streams. You can practice magic without involving deity at any point, and of course you can have a spiritual practice without magic. We bundle them together a lot, but they can absolutely be practiced independently of each other. As witches, we can and should address both aspects in our self-care. Nourishing only one part of your connection—to the world around you or to the Divine—limits you. And being able to access both aspects enhances the effects of each.

RF: You introduced us to the Danish concept of Hygge and its benefits for self-care. Could you tell us a little more about this?

AMH: Hygge has been a buzzword for a couple of years now. When I started reading about it in media back then, a lot of it was kind of a “well, duh” moment for me. The concept of hygge resonated with me and reflected so much of my existing outlook. I’m very home and hearth-based; my personal practice is rooted in comfort, simplicity, security, and caring for others. In self-care, those concepts are underlined, but with the primary subject being yourself. In North American culture we tend to perpetuate a martyr-like ideal, sacrificing the self for the good of others. That’s very noble on paper, but it’s terrible from the point of view of self-care. And it’s absolutely not sustainable. Hygge self-care suggests that caring for yourself has benefits beyond just making yourself feel better; it suggests that if you are feeling better, stronger, rested, more content, that spills over into the rest of your life, too, affecting those around you and your spaces in a positive way.

RF: Being a mother, HPs, wife and author and the stresses that come with all of those roles can you speak more about how to find the balance between self-care and maintaining the pressing responsibilities that require more of you?

AMH: It’s a constant juggling act. It’s important to step back and take stock regularly, probably more often than you already do, to catch problems before they become severe issues. And when you take stock, you have to be as objective as possible. I’m… not very good at that part, to be honest. I’m a work in progress. It’s one of the reasons why I try to fill my cup when I can, and look for the serenity and small pleasures of self-care in daily life. Ongoing maintenance is easier than a full-scale repair.

It’s wonderful to have a support network that keeps an eye on you, too. You can think, “No, I’ve got this, I can totally do this,” but good friends will haul you into their kitchens and say, “Look, you’re working yourself into a dangerous place, and we are going to intervene so you have a bit of time in which you can disengage and clear your head.” Sometimes that intervention is coffee, sometimes it’s supper at their place so you don’t have to think about what to make, sometimes it’s an impromptu playdate at their house so you don’t have to think about the kids for a couple of hours. I wouldn’t be as sane as I am without my in-person network, or my online network. Or my family, come to that. My husband will up and take the kids to a friends’ house and leave me alone for the morning, or my kids will randomly bring me cups of tea or chocolate because they know I enjoy them.

My coveners are amazing. They are all about the low-impact practice, bless them, and a lot of our spiritual work happens through food or arts and crafts. Weather or illness or overtime means we don’t get together as often as we all wish we could, but the bond is there regardless. I’m so grateful for them being the people they are.

RF: I loved the idea that we often fear having “more agency and control over (your) life than you may be comfortable accepting.” What have you done to break through and push back when confronted with this?

AMH: It’s really scary to accept responsibility for what happens in your life. It’s so much easier to believe that you’re a victim. But there is strength that comes from recognizing that you made a mistake somewhere, and acknowledging that hey, that wasn’t the right choice to make at the time. The moment you take responsibility, you open up the possibility that you can change, and you can effect change. That’s a powerful move. People can be uncomfortable with power. It’s easier to let someone else make the decisions.

RF: What is your favorite part of the book and/or exercises?

AMH: The arts and crafts, I think! I love uniting creativity and spirituality, and I’m a big supporter of using art to express or explore your relationship with the Divine. It encompasses keeping your hands busy and disengaging the overactive mind, has the benefit of producing something tangible, and works to stimulate different areas of your brain.

RF: Having completed your book, what other piece of wisdom would you offer about self-care that wasn’t included?

AMH: I really want to hammer home the idea that you are worth taking care of. I know how hard it can be when you’re in a crappy situation and you feel like there’s no way out. Even if you can’t throw it all out and start again, you can make small changes to remind yourself that you are worth it, and work on it incrementally; it can be a long road, and it’s an ongoing pursuit. Mistreatment by others (casual or otherwise) doesn’t mean that’s the kind of life you merit. Everyone deserves respect, health, and happiness!

This is a book I will return to frequently to savor the experiences and remind myself that self-care begins with the self. Thank you, Arin, for so seamlessly integrating practical advice and magic that is healing and restorative.

The Witch’s Book of Self-Care: Magical Ways to Pamper, Soothe, and Care for Your Body and Spirit on Amazon

***

About the Author:

Robin Fennelly is a Wiccan High Priestess, teacher, poet and author.

She is the author of (click on book titles for more information):

The Inner Chamber Volume One on Amazon

It’s Written in the Stars

Astrology

The Inner Chamber, Vol. Two

poetry of the Spheres (Volume 2) on Amazon

Qabalah

The Inner Chamber, Vol. Three

Awakening the Paths on Amazon

Qabalah

A Year With Gaia on Amazon

The Eternal Cord

Temple of the Sun and Moon on Amazon

Luminous Devotions

The Magickal Pen Volume One (Volume 1) on Amazon

A Collection of Esoteric Writings

The Elemental Year on Amazon

Aligning the Parts of SELF

The Enchanted Gate on Amazon

Musings on the Magick of the Natural World

Sleeping with the Goddess on Amazon

Nights of Devotion

A Weekly Reflection on Amazon

Musings for the Year

Her books are available on Amazon or on this website and her Blogs can be found atRobin Fennelly 

Follow Robinon Instagram & Facebook.

Worth the Witch

June, 2018

Goddess Provisions

 

 

Boxes Fit for Goddesses,” is what GoddessProvisions advertise they carry. They would like to “Nourish your inner goddess and grow your spiritual practice.” Sounds interesting to me, now let’s see if they can deliver!

GoddessProvisions.com sells their boxes either monthly or as monthly subscriptions. A monthly box cost $33.00 and if you live within the USA, shipping is free.

 

My Box Arrives!!

 

 

You definitely know when your GoddessProvisions Box has arrived! It is a lovely, purple box with the companies logo on top. It’s website on one side.

 

 

As well as, a lovely quote of the boxes intentions covering another

 

 

…and other self promoting links cover the rest of the sides.

The bottom has the companies logo and some really cute doodles. The box does draw attention, but not in a witchy way. People will read the word Goddess, but I feel they will think of it more as something for just any woman, or for pampering. In other words, if you are in the broom closet, you are safe with this Box!

 

First Opening

 

 

Upon opening the box you can not help but smile at the cute doodles again! Everything is so neatly placed, you almost hate to disturb it! But I must dig in for the postcard I see poking through at the bottom.

 

The Postcard

 

 

The postcard I pull out is THE MOST professional catalog of inventory and information I have seen come with a subscription box yet. It is gorgeous. Laminated. Brightly colored. Includes every single item in the box. Does not leave out anything!! It shows you a picture of each item with a number next to it. The numbers are then on the back of the card and match to a paragraph about each individual item, explaining: what it is, how its used, it’s monetary value, and even how to get in contact with the creator of the item showing their logos. Completely thorough. I am blown away.

In my excitement about the brilliance of the table of contents, I forgot to mention that this GoddessProvisions Month’s Box theme is Aura Cleanse….”Radiate Light from Within.”

 

Aura Mist

 

 

Kate’s Magic Purification & Protection Aura Mist has a light aroma. It’s not an overpowering scent. Very soothing still. The scents inside are Sandalwood & Lavender, however I do not smell so much lavender. Stays true to the fact that it is a mist, so when it falls on your skin it does not leave a heavy or oily feel on it. More like a lovely cool sensation. They send a nice full sized bottle.

 

Seaweed Bath Co. Detox Facial Bar

 

 

All natural ingredients like seaweed, charcoal, & volcanic ash. This bar of soap is Vegan and cruelty free. It has 65 vitamins and minerals. It’s for gently exfoliating skin while washing away toxins from the environment. It says unscented, but I’m gonna be honest, it has a slight scent. Not an unpleasing one or pleasing one. Just a small scent. It lathered up nicely. Just like any other soap would. Most importantly how did it make my skin feel after washing? Really amazing. You know the tightness you get from a regular soap bar because it is very drying, so it leaves your skin feeling very taut on your face. You get none of that feeling with Seaweed Bath Co.’s Bar, yet you still feel completely fresh & clean. Twenty minutes later my skin still felt soft, clean, yet more moisturized then usual. No oily spots anywhere, either.

 

Jade Facial Roller

 

 

Jade is a wonderful stone of health and healing revered in China. By rolling the Jade Facial Roller over your face your circulation is increased in your skin while promoting lymphatic drainage & releasing toxins. Facial muscles relax and collagen is stimulated, improving elasticity. All the while reducing fine lines, dark circles, & Puffiness.

GoddessProvisions.com provides a website on their postcard that teaches you the proper way to use your new beauty & relaxation tool. Written instructions, a drawing, and a video are provided.

Provided is a beautiful solid jade roller. It looks heavier then it is, but it is by no means flimsy. At first is it cold on the face and a bit hard and shocking. A bit squeaky. The massage it gives your face is lovely. The feeling is relaxing. Only time will tell if it does all it says, but the quality is definitely there.

 

Munde Fragrance

 

 

Pax Apothecary Munde Vibrational Fragrance is the companies own blend of essential oils in a glass, roller ball dispenser bottle. The scents included are bergamot, carrot seed, cedarwood, lavender, lemongrass, and saro. You are to roll this blend onto your pulse points to clear energetic blocks so you can pursue your purpose. Very fragrant. Not my personal choice of smell. A bit pinsesol & lemon drops to me. Maybe to manly for me. But it’s strong, good quality oil. Not a weak blend. The scent lasts a long time. My husband enjoys the scent and tested it and it’s longevity for us.

 

Rose Detox Tea

 

 

Essential Life Detox Tea ingredients include organic ginger, dandelion root, tulsi & lemongrass. This is a loose tea. It has a sweet, earthy flavor. Very delicious taste and I am picky with my herbal teas. It is for purifying your energy field and cleansing your body from the inside out. It leaves you feeling very relaxed after drinking with a nice after taste on your tongue. The packaging gives you instructions for ratio and & steeping.

 

Decorated Selenite Heart

 

 

Fractalista Selenite Heart has a gorgeous design laser-etched onto it. It is very fragile. A great tool for energy workers. Used over your Chakras in times of anxiety, stress, or depression. It absorbs excess emotions and breaks up energy blockages and cleanses your aura.

 

My Over All Impression…

 

 

These definitely are “Boxes Fit for Goddesses.GoddessProvisions.com definitely delivers a box that pampers the Goddess in us all. The products are of amazing quality. Solid, full sizes, working, delicious, beautiful, & lasting. Just about every item comes with a full explanation on it, but if it doesn’t there are no worries because the beautiful postcard GoddessProvisions provides explains it all. Instructions on what it is used for, the name of the company, links to the company, even links to instructional videos on how to use the products. They really cover all angles so there is no confusion on the buyers part. I would definitely recommend purchasing a box from GoddessProvisions. The quality it amazing.

 

Unfortunately we do not have our usually Q & A with the company, but I thought I would provide a little more on what GoddessProvisions offers.

 

Each Box Contains

  • 5-7 full size products per box
  • Great value, typically $60-$90 of goddess goodies
  • Free shipping to the U.S.
  • Ships Worldwide
  • $33 per month or as low as $27.75 with 12 month prepay
  • Always cruelty-free & vegan

Their Subscription Prices

  • Month to Month is $33 charged every month
  • 3 Month prepay is $99 charged every 3 months
  • 6 month prepay is $178 charged every 6 months
  • 12 month prepay is $ 333 charged every 12 months

These are all in USD.

Shipping is free in the USA. Canadian shipping is $15. International is $25.

 

There is also… a Shop Area where you can buy some of their past boxes, as well as, a few items found in past boxes. You can even gift a box to someone.

 

To Contact GoddessProvisions

Their Website: GoddessProvisions.com

Their Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/goddessprovisions/

Their Twitter: https://twitter.com/goddessbox

Their Instagram: @GoddessProvisions

Their Snapchat: @GoddessBox

 

***

About the Author:

Jennifer Sacasa-Wright is simply a Witch. She runs PaganPagesOrg eMag.  She loves hearing your opinions & thoughts on the eMagazine and welcomes comments. You can email her at jenniferwright at paganpages dot org.  When she is not working on PaganPagesOrg she is creating in some other way & trying to make the world a better place with her family.