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Book Review – The Hidden Worlds by Sandra Ingerman & Katherine Wood

June 1st, 2019

Book Review
The Hidden Worlds
by Sandra Ingerman and Katherine Wood

The
Hidden Worlds
is a gift to
“juvenile fiction”. The authors, Sandra Ingerman and Katherine
Wood bring the wealth of their experience as Shamans and in the case
of Katherine, as an educator, and present a story of fiction that
holds a wealth of keys and nuances to be used for any young
practitioner.

Sandra Ingerman, a world renowned Shaman, shares that The Hidden Worlds is based upon her own spiritual experiences as she entered the world of study and understanding the principles of Shamanic practice. Katherine, Sandra’s student, became the collaborator for a story that brings to life the natural wisdom of our youth and the power that they hold in affecting change for their future and the future of our plant.

The
main character, Isaiah, is a dreamer. And, in those dreams he finds
those companions that will become the cohort that takes down a power
plant that is polluting and dumping waste into the local stream. All
are connected by shared dreams and are drawn together as they meet at
the pond in their dreams and find that the dead fish and birds, each
saw in their dreams are more than portents of upcoming disaster from
toxic waste.

The
chapters are short, appropriately paced for many of today’s youth
taste for getting directly to the point and quickly. Each building
upon the foundations of basic shamanic practice and learning to
engage power animals and journeying to the three worlds.

All
in all I enjoyed reading The Hidden Worlds, especially as a departure
from the traditional works of Ms. Ingerman that instruct and inform
the Shamanic practice from the direction of theory and experience.
That being said, this is an excellent introduction to be accessed by
young adults. Environmental issues, spiritual growth and the power of
community and collaboration are themes throughout, with the addition
of a bit of romance as well. It s a reminder that we coexist with
these “Hidden Worlds” and as humans we are not powerless when
faced with the future of our planet, its eco system and those with
whom we share this home.

The Hidden Worlds 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 at
Robin
Fennelly
 

Follow
Robin
 on
Instagram & Facebook.

Book Review of “Spiritual Places” By Sarah Baxter

As someone who loves to read and write about the sacred places across America and the world, this book is an absolute gem!

The book encompasses the world, from St. Catherine’s Monastery in Egypy to Mount Olympus in Greece, from the Isle of Iona and Avebury in the United Kingdom to Shwedagon Paya in Myanmar.

Some are specific places in these different countries, but others, like Kyoto and The Ganges, are termed spiritual in their entirety.

Each individual sacred place is given it’s own section. The writing is beautiful, and vivid, as in this opening paragraph from the section on the “Isle of Iona”:

“It’s just the spot to commune with the heavens.

Gazing westwards of this tiny isle – a flimsy drop

of green in a gust-frenzied sea – you might believe

there’s nothing else in the world. Nature is all

encompassing and elemental: silvery sands,

swelling surf, a scatter of rocks and skerries

disappearing to an infinite horizon.”

I can almost see the island, feel the droplets from the sea on my face, smell it in the air.

This is how Ms. Baxter writes. The individual sections describe the beauty and sacredness of each, explaining the history and the landscape, with details such as how you enter, what your surroundings are.

Places such as Mount Olympus give the early history of the Gods, before describing what such a place looks and feels like.

The illustrations by Harry and Zanna Goldhawk are charming and delightful, a perfect complement to Ms. Baxter’s writings.

The top of the cover has the words “Inspired Traveller’s Guide”. This book is definitely inspiring and will whisk you away to spiritual places the world over, and maybe help you decide your next vacation.

Spiritual Places (Inspired Traveller’s Guides)

***

About the Author:

Susan Morgaine is a Daughter of the Goddess, Witch, Writer, Teacher, Healer, and Yogini. She is a monthly columnist with PaganPages.org Her writings can be found in The Girl God Anthologies, “Whatever Works: Feminists of Faith Speak” and “Jesus, Mohammed and the Goddess”, as well as Mago Publications “She Rises, Volume 2, and “Celebrating Seasons of the Goddess”. She has also been published in Jareeda and SageWoman magazines. She is a Certified Women’s Empowerment Coach/Facilitator through She is the author of “My Name is Isis”, one in the series of the “My Name Is………” children’s books published by The Girl God Publications. A Woman International, founded by Patricia Lynn Reilly. She has long been involved in Goddess Spirituality and Feminism, teaching classes and workshops, including Priestessing Red Tents within MA and RI. She is entering her 20th year teaching Kundalini Yoga and Meditation, being a Certified instructor through the Kundalini Research Institute, as well as being a Reiki Master. She is a member of the Sisterhood of Avalon. She can be found at https://mysticalshores.wordpress.com/ and her email is [email protected]

My Name is Isis (Volume 4)

Book
Review

Chakra
Animals

Discover
Your Connection to Wisdom of the Natural World

by
Angelica Stuart

Chakra
Animals by Angelica Stuart provides an opportunity to weave the
fundamentals of Chakra work and the wisdom of the animals into a new
journey of exploration. Each of these subjects stands on its own with
volumes of text and information, so the ability to use as resource an
easily readable book that leaves room for an open interpretation
based on your prior knowledge is a wonderful addition.

The
book begins with a brief overview of each of the seven traditional
Chakras.
The standard associations are given for each including, color-element
and sense. The descriptions are condensed, but given a subject of
this weight and expanse, enough is given to stimulate the organic
brainstorming of your own connections and interpretations.

Practical
Uses
for coordinating Chakra
application and working with the animals follows. As the author
states…. “there are endless
parallels that I could make, but my hope is that you find many on
your own.”
This is a gentle
reminder that the work that is done should always be guided by your
own intuitive nature, in particular when seeking the assistance of
other beings and energies.

And,
the remainder of the book focuses on the energies and attributes of
fifty (50) Animals
that are commonly considered as animal guides and totems. Each animal
is described for its overall traditional use, key attributes and how
that animals energies may be used to enhance each of the seven
chakras. This break-down provides the integrative piece of aligning
your chakra work of development with the animal totems/guides that
present to you.

The
final offering is an index-styled listing of intentions, or
Connections
that identify the specific animals associated and are supportive of
that specific work. Intentions include: Abundance, Community,
Communication, Intelligence and more.

A
lovely addition at the back of the book making use of the author’s
credentials as a graduate of the prestigious MICA school of Art, are
several pages of graphic illustrations of the animals discussed that
are scored into a grid such that they can be cut out and pasted onto
an index card for reference and individual work. A deck of specially
illustrated cards – Chakra
Animals Oracle Cards
– may
also be ordered via the author’s Etsy site.

Visit the author’s FB page: https://www.facebook.com/chakraanimals/

Visit the author’s Etsy store: www.etsy.com/chakraanimals/

Click HERE or on Book Cover for Amazon Info

***

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 at
Robin
Fennelly
 

Follow
Robin
 on
Instagram & Facebook.

Book Review
Witchbody
A Graphic Novel
By Sabrina Scott
74 pp.

“Can magic teach us how to love?” asks Sabrina Scott partway through their graphic essay, “Witchbody: A Graphic Novel.” As Scott builds up layers of radical environmentalism and transformative animism through the book, the answer crystallizes: yes, magic can teach us how to love, because empathy and experience are the way forward, and magic gives us the tools to learn and practice both. While it is difficult to pin down a single thesis for this essay — perhaps only because the scope of Scott’s topic is so broad — one clear theme is that through the intentional sharing of spaces and bodies, and the experience of other bodies in relationship to our own, we come to know, understand, and love each other. By experiencing pain, grief, loss, and transformation, we learn to recognize and honor these experiences in others, and in the world around us. By seeing ourselves as we truly are, what we share and where we differ with others, we come to be one.

More
a poetic essay than a narrative, “Witchbody” is a book which
muses about ontology, experience, physicality, and spirituality —
and what these things all have to do with each other. Scott’s
beautiful ink and watercolor illustrations enrich their words,
lending reinforcement to their message through the depiction of
interactions between humans and the liminal spaces that guide us
between and within our urban and natural environments. 

Scott’s
magical attitude takes flight as everyday activities are transformed
into moments of transcendent beauty, during which awareness and
empathy inflame a daily sense of unity with the surrounding world.
Man, earth, and animal engage with each other on a daily basis. In
these watery, organic panels, bones, phones, ferrets, and flowers all
float down the same stream as the self; all inhabit one sphere and
collide with each other in the same space, as one body. And in these
bodies, and in our shared body, we can suffer pain, illness, and
death — and when we deny the truth of our shared body, we truly do
damage to each other. At the same time, our sensuality is a gateway
to ontological understanding; by having a body and engaging with our
own bodies, we can come to understand what it means to have a body,
to be a being in the physical, natural world.

But
Scott does not praise only sameness or the recognition of shared
traits by different bodies; while this is an attractive shortcut, it
can also invalidate more experiences than it validates, and ignores a
lot. Instead, Scott delves into how the self-as-same and
self-as-different juxtaposition propels animistic empathy forward,
causing true transformation and understanding through primary
experience and communication, rather than analysis, reflection, or
judgment. It is in the active compassion for the other that we build
the bridge between our own experience as human individuals, and the
experience of the others, by extending our own capacity for feeling
and our borders past our own skin.

Sabrina Scott’s “Witchbody” is a beautiful book which will appeal to animistic and environmentally-minded witches, artistic witches, and anyone who believes that we are all one. While there is more text here than in a regular graphic novel of the same length due to the dense and complex nature of the content, it’s still an easy afternoon read that will leave you eager to experience how engaging with the natural other can strengthen and sustain our collaborative, shared world.

Witchbody: A Graphic Novel on Amazon

***

About
the Author:

Sarah
McMenomy
is
an artist and witch. Her craft incorporates herbalism, spellwork,
trance, divination, auras, and more. Her work can be found at
https://sarahmcmenomy.tumblr.com

Book Review
Divining With Animal Guides
Answers from the World at Hand
by Hearth Moon Rising

I
was delighted to discover that Divining with Animal Guides is not a
cookbook dictionary, concretizing the “meanings” of animal
encounters. Author Hearth Moon Rising has created a manual for
learning to observe and discern and ultimately, to shift our
strictly human viewpoint. Only when we look at the context in which
the animals offer us their messages are we able to fully understand
their invitations and gifts.

Rising
weaves science, mythology, mathematics and storytelling into each of
the chapters. There are 9 in total, covering the cat family big and
small, alligators and crocodiles, horses, bees, scorpions, ravens,
woodpeckers, deer and the antlered ones, and cranes. This is not a
purely “magical” discussion of these beings, although she
provides a short review for each animal guide, briefly listing
magical qualities and applications and other associations. She
focuses instead on laying the groundwork for an understanding of the
animal’s place and workings in nature through its evolution and
biology, and then delves into its mythology and historical
associations. So, in the chapter on Cat, Rising brings the cat
forward from its origins in Egypt to its association with witches in
Europe right up to its appearance in quantum physics as Schrodinger’s
Cat. She also provides a story or poem to place the animal in a
particular cultural context so we can begin to sense how its powers
interact with its world. I was fascinated at how well Rising created
this weaving of science and mythology and found it difficult to put
the book down at points. She evokes the energetic field of the
animal’s entire biological and historical existence so we can
connect to it and make our own associations.

Rising’s
instructions for using math and geometry in observing and
interpreting signs and messages are wonderful. For example, she asks
us to consider that bees construct hexagonal honeycombs and launches
into an analysis of the hexagon and the significance of the number 8
that is guaranteed to deepen your understanding of any messages you
have ever received from Bee. And if you find a lone animal that
usually travels in pairs or groups, reflect on why only one appears
now.

Rising
emphasizes scientific observation of the animal and an appreciation
of the context – environmental, biological and metaphoric – in
which it appears or communicates with you. Observing it closely
where and how it appears rather than jumping to a conclusion about
what it “means” makes the difference between a superficial
understanding of its message and truly receiving it and allowing it
to unfold over time. Rising uses each animal to demonstrate a
different aspect of observation – ravens for sight and seeing,
woodpeckers for hearing and listening, deer (rarely seen nor heard) –
tracking through confusing signals until you find your way. In other
words, discerning the root what is meant and which clues in the
message to follow. As she points out, “A paradigm shift cannot
occur with the disintegration of beliefs and the subsequent
disorientation…The most profound animal signs are not the ones that
tell you where to go next or what to expect in the year ahead. They
are the signs that open the world, allowing you to see something new,
even to realize a deeper lever of truth.” She pushes us to
cultivate observation skills beyond our “usual” boundaries so we
can feel the energy of the deer we hadn’t seen standing next to us
in the bushes. She asks us to lose our limited human viewpoint and
remove our ego-centric blinders so we can receive the fresh
information that the natural world continually offers to us –
“divination in nature is not for those who have no room for
questioning their beliefs.” In order to help us loosen the grip of
our firm convictions, Rising offers provocative questions for
reflection in each chapter, too. I found them to be koan-like; I had
to stop and really consider what those questions were asking of me.

This book is a jewel. It is
much more than a book about the animal powers. It is a guide for how
to open our perception to the world around us and broaden our ability
to communicate with our co-inhabitants. It is so much more than a
dictionary of totem animals. It will challenge you, make you laugh
and invite you to step into “the moment of power, the instant when
a door opens and one thing changes into another…” as Rising says
in her Final Words to us. Divining with Animal Guides: Answers from
the World at Hand is well-worth adding to your library.

Divining with Animal Guides: Answers from the World at Hand on Amazon

***

About
the Author:

Susan
Rossi

is a Practitioner and Teacher of Shamanism. She is a long-time
explorer of The Mysteries – the connections between mind, body,
spirit and how to live in right relationship to all of the energies
streaming through the cosmos. She works with clients as an
astrologer, coach, ceremonialist and guide to the wisdom that each of
us has the capacity to access. Her focus is on guiding
clients to unblock and rediscover their inner wisdom. , exploration
of the birth chart, ceremony, legacy writing, hypnotherapy, energetic
healing practice and creation of sacred tools are integral pieces of
her practice.

Susan
trained in Soul Level Astrology with master astrologer Mark Borax.
She delights in exploring with individuals the planetary pattern
under which their soul choose to incarnate.

Flying to the Heart www.flyingtotheheart.com

Open
Channel Astrology: openchannelastrology.com

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