SUBSCRIBE

Book Review – Shamanic Plant Medicine-San Pedro: The Gateway to Wisdom by Ross Heaven

August 1st, 2019

Book Review
Shamanic Plant Medicine-San Pedro
The Gateway to Wisdom
by Ross Heaven

San
Pedro: The Gateway to Wisdom is one in The Shamanic Plant Medicine
series authored by Ross Heaven. Each book introduces a plant
medicine teacher and medicine ally. This well-written, accessible
book introduces us to the Cactus of Mystery, San Pedro, native to the
Andes and used by Andean shamans in healing ceremonies.

Mr.
Heaven, who died in 2018, has left us with a practical and nuanced
introduction to San Pedro. The book gives us an overview of the
plant’s history and the lore relating to its sense of mystery,
which certainly drew me in to wanting to know more about it. Here
are some of the fascinating bits of lore that Heaven provided: Legend
has it that St. Cyprian was instructed by Jesus to hide the keys to
Paradise from the Spanish invaders and Inquisition in a cactus under
the watchful eye of St. Peter, keeper of the keys to Heaven– hence
this entheogen’s name. It also has many nicknames, one of which is
punku – doorway or gateway – for its ability to open a doorway
beyond the world of illusion, as author Heaven wrote. Its active
ingredient is mescaline and its healing and nurturing action has
earned it another nickname: Grandfather. As Heaven wrote in a
different book: “There is a sort of mystery surrounding San Pedro
and a sense that knowledge of the plant must remain secret or at
least be earned through preparation, participation and worthiness of
those who drink it.”

Heaven
provided a detailed chapter on why San Pedro’s medicine is sought
after and descriptions of various ceremonies and methods of use by
San Pedro shamans. Heaven also discussed various modes of
preparation, while urging respect, safety and caution working with
this teacher plant. While it is not a how-to, step-by-step manual,
the book provides excellent guidance on what to look for when seeking
someone to conduct and support a ceremony. The personal accounts of
people who experienced San Pedro’s healing effects in ceremony with
Heaven and other shamans are engaging, encouraging and worth reading.

The
most fascinating and instructive section examines the effects of San
Pedro on creativity. There is an overview of the early research with
psychedelics in the 1960s, specifically with their effect on artists.
Heaven equated the ability of the creative process – to “shift”
the brain into perceiving and functioning differently – with the
nature of the entheogenic experience. Both processes are
“nonrational and nonverbal, the insights coming at an almost
cellular level through the remodeling of the self. Trying to capture
this experience in words is too limiting for those who have undergone
it.” Heaven’s description of these processes is reason alone to
read this book! A discussion of shamans as artists as they engage
with the creative flow of energy in the healing process is also worth
the read. There are also deeply engaging personal accounts of visual
and musical artists who described the effects of San Pedro on their
work and their search for self-knowledge.

Heaven
ended the book with a chapter on working responsibly with San Pedro.
There are in-depth recommendations regarding environment, introducing
yourself to the plant with respect, what to expect during the work
itself and legalities of possession and use of San Pedro.

If
you are interested in working with San Pedro, or simply in learning
more about entheogenic plant medicine in general, this book is a
great place to start. It is an easy to read, well-researched and
information beginning. I will keep it on my bookshelf as a good
reference and already plan to read the other books in this excellent
series from Moon Books.

Shamanic Plant Medicine – San Pedro: The Gateway to Wisdom 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

Book Review
Shamanic Plant Medicine-San Pedro
The Gateway to Wisdom
by Ross Heaven

San
Pedro: The Gateway to Wisdom is one in The Shamanic Plant Medicine
series authored by Ross Heaven. Each book introduces a plant
medicine teacher and medicine ally. This well-written, accessible
book introduces us to the Cactus of Mystery, San Pedro, native to the
Andes and used by Andean shamans in healing ceremonies.

Mr.
Heaven, who died in 2018, has left us with a practical and nuanced
introduction to San Pedro. The book gives us an overview of the
plant’s history and the lore relating to its sense of mystery,
which certainly drew me in to wanting to know more about it. Here
are some of the fascinating bits of lore that Heaven provided: Legend
has it that St. Cyprian was instructed by Jesus to hide the keys to
Paradise from the Spanish invaders and Inquisition in a cactus under
the watchful eye of St. Peter, keeper of the keys to Heaven– hence
this entheogen’s name. It also has many nicknames, one of which is
punku – doorway or gateway – for its ability to open a doorway
beyond the world of illusion, as author Heaven wrote. Its active
ingredient is mescaline and its healing and nurturing action has
earned it another nickname: Grandfather. As Heaven wrote in a
different book: “There is a sort of mystery surrounding San Pedro
and a sense that knowledge of the plant must remain secret or at
least be earned through preparation, participation and worthiness of
those who drink it.”

Heaven
provided a detailed chapter on why San Pedro’s medicine is sought
after and descriptions of various ceremonies and methods of use by
San Pedro shamans. Heaven also discussed various modes of
preparation, while urging respect, safety and caution working with
this teacher plant. While it is not a how-to, step-by-step manual,
the book provides excellent guidance on what to look for when seeking
someone to conduct and support a ceremony. The personal accounts of
people who experienced San Pedro’s healing effects in ceremony with
Heaven and other shamans are engaging, encouraging and worth reading.

The
most fascinating and instructive section examines the effects of San
Pedro on creativity. There is an overview of the early research with
psychedelics in the 1960s, specifically with their effect on artists.
Heaven equated the ability of the creative process – to “shift”
the brain into perceiving and functioning differently – with the
nature of the entheogenic experience. Both processes are
“nonrational and nonverbal, the insights coming at an almost
cellular level through the remodeling of the self. Trying to capture
this experience in words is too limiting for those who have undergone
it.” Heaven’s description of these processes is reason alone to
read this book! A discussion of shamans as artists as they engage
with the creative flow of energy in the healing process is also worth
the read. There are also deeply engaging personal accounts of visual
and musical artists who described the effects of San Pedro on their
work and their search for self-knowledge.

Heaven
ended the book with a chapter on working responsibly with San Pedro.
There are in-depth recommendations regarding environment, introducing
yourself to the plant with respect, what to expect during the work
itself and legalities of possession and use of San Pedro.

If
you are interested in working with San Pedro, or simply in learning
more about entheogenic plant medicine in general, this book is a
great place to start. It is an easy to read, well-researched and
information beginning. I will keep it on my bookshelf as a good
reference and already plan to read the other books in this excellent
series from Moon Books.

Shamanic Plant Medicine – San Pedro: The Gateway to Wisdom 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

LED Crystal Grid Review & Interview with Jessica Miller from Cracked Crystal Co.

Jessica Miller from the Cracked Crystal Co. was so sweet as to send me one of her LED light up grids to try out. It measures 11in X 9.5 in X 1 in. It came with 2 different design plates (made of glass). You can interchange them in the wooden holder. It’s so neat to have 2 options! You place the glass grid you are working with into the wooden slots to hold it in place. Then you attach the plugs that come with it and connect to an electric source. It’s easy to put together. Then you set up your grid. When you are ready to add color to your gridding experience, it comes with a remote to control which colors you want to use.

Only thing I would recommend is including instructions for the remote (sometimes I need the extra help lol). After I turned it on it was a gorgeous blue. I wasn’t expecting it to be so bright! It’s visually stunning! Then I changed the colors many times and each color looked cooler than the last! So much fun and really brings a new layer to the gridding process! I love being able to change colors to suit my intentions. I took pictures of the different colors but unfortunately the pics do not do this grid justice.

It doesn’t translate onto the picture. But trust me it is a feast for the eyes! I really am enjoying this grid and look forward to trying different color combinations with different stones. A whole new world of possibilities! This LED light up grid is $85 and comes with 2 glass grids.You can choose which 2 patterns you want.  In the etsy shop there are also wood and lucite grid options as well. I highly recommend this light up grid. It truly is magical!

I had the opportunity to ask Jessica some questions about gridding and here are her responses.

Q: How did you get started using and making grids?

Jessica: I’ve loved crystals for a long time and grown a lot in my spiritual journey throughout the years. Grids helped me better understand my crystals and energy work so of course I wanted to help spread that knowledge. 

Q: What are the different styles and materials you make your grids?

Jessica: Currently we offer grids in wood, lucite and glass. We feature several sacred geometry grids and a few homemade patterns.

Q: What is your personal favorite grid you offer and why?

Jessica: I am personally partial to our cut out flower of life grid. It’s delicate and gorgeous to look at. I also so appreciate how different our illuminating grid is. There is something powerful about that color under your crystals!

Q: What do you use gridding for?

Jessica: Stress relief mostly. I find setting up the grids very relaxing. Taking the time to listen to your stones and see how they work together is so rewarding. 

Q: What are some of your favorite crystals to grid with?

Jessica: Ok so my absolute favorite combo is amethyst and celestite. Such sweet and loving energy. Like a hug from the universe. 

Q: Why is gridding an effective tool to add to one’s daily practice?

Jessica: It’s a time to set aside for yourself and your crystals. Like meditation its important to take that time daily (or as often as you can).

Q: How long have you worked with grids?

Jessica: I began working with grids in 2017, so not very long! Honestly, I used to think they were foolish. What would I get out of gridding that I didn’t get from my stones on their own? Boy am I glad I tried it!

Q: What’s one thing you want to share that I haven’t asked?

Jessica: This practice is there for self-love and improvement. Remember, you are wonderful and your journey is beautiful. May you be well, happy and peaceful.

Q: For my readers to follow/contact you, what are all of your social media links?

Jessica:

Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/CrackedCrystalCo

FB: https://m.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1669939697773948ref=content_filter

Instagram:  @CrackedcrystalCo

Pinterest: https://pin.it/in6qpprtysi5vh 

Thank you so much to Jessica for both sending me such a gorgeous grid and for taking the time to answer my questions!

Love and crystal blessings, Xoxo Retha

***

About the Author:

Retha N. Lent has been married for 17 years to her husband Mark & they have four cats that are their life. She lives in Norristown, Pa. Retha has her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Behavioral Counseling Sciences from Drexel University. She is the owner of “Retha’s Crystals” & sells sterling silver unique crystal jewelry & specimens on her FB business page. She has a FB group for her customers and those interested in learning more about crystals & all things magical called “Retha’s Crystal Circle“. She is also an advisor in the Sage Goddess Affiliate Program. She has her Holistic Healing Certificate and Pillars of Priestessing certificates from Sage Goddess. She is also an Ordained Pagan Minister from the Universal Life Church. Retha has a passion for crystals, nature, astrology, working with moon cycles, ritual practices, tarot and oracle cards, runes, essential oils, herbs, manifestation work, ancient cultures, magic & music. Her favorite place is New Orleans, La. Retha has an extensive personal crystal collection and loves sharing her love of crystals with the world. She has been a practicing pagan since she was 16 years old. 

You can reach her at [email protected] or on her business page on FB: https://www.facebook.com/Rethas-Crystals-197411227666484/

Or in her FB group:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/1960619300929876

Her Sage Goddess affiliate link is:

www.sagegoddess.com/ref/84/

Or follow her on Instagram at @spookygirl16

 

Protection and Reversal Magick

A Witch’s Defense Manual

by Jason Miller

224 pages

In the last chapter Mr. Miller writes something interesting about magickal, psychic and spiritual attacks: he states that attacks are happening every day to everyone. They are being launched not only by offended spirits and malicious magicians, but major corporations and political parties. He asks: “Where does a magical seal, a binding, end and a corporate logo start? Where does the use of neuro-linguistics programming in sales and in the use of sorceress bindings begin?” Mr. Miller says that if you haven’t thought about this as magic, then think again.

Mr. Miller dedicates this book more to Hecate than he does any other deity. He wrote this book as an attempt to step beyond the “101’s” that seem to fill the shelves these days. This book is on defensive witchcraft, not Wicca.

There are chapters in this book on daily practices, personal protection and protection of the home. Chapter 6 of this book covers spirit guardians and servitors, this is an interesting chapter. I’m going to quote the author here, because I happen to agree with what he says about spirit guardians and servitors. Mr. Miller wrote: “It follows that if you treat the spirit as a separate entity that you are summoning, you will be able to get more worked up over the process delete than if you go into it as some psychological trick, and thus achieve greater success, no matter what the spirits true nature.”

I would recommend this book for someone who is wondering if they are under spiritual attack, wanting to delve deeper into reversal encounter magic, or who is looking for protection for their home. The rituals that Mr. Miller includes in this book are complete and easy to follow along with. It is also easy to come by a lot of the ingredients that are included in the rituals and the spells. I do feel that this is a book above the beginner level that are on the shelves today. But, even if this is your first book into Protective and Reversal Magick, Mr. Miller has made it easy to understand.

Protection and Reversal Magick on Amazon

 

***

About the Author:

Dawn Borries loves reading and was thrilled to become a Reviewer for PaganPages.Org. Dawn, also, has been doing Tarot and Numerology readings for the past 25 years. Dawn does readings on her Facebook page.  If you are interested in a reading you can reach her at: Readings by Dawn on Facebook at

https://www.facebook.com/Readings-by-Dawn-1608860142735781/

Book Review

Pastel Spells

by Rose Orriculum

 

 

Taken from the back cover “Pastel Spells is a pocket spell book filled with a variety of spells for witches of all levels of experience, from beginners to long-time practitioners.” That statement really sums up Pastel Spells so well.

This is one of my favorite spell books to date. It doesn’t focus on any certain type of spells and even includes curses. Some of the of the spells are romantic, sexual, anti-love, platonic love/friendship, help with relationships, sour relationships, self-love, self-care/habits, self-care/emotional, healing, and, as I mentioned, curses. There is also a few spells on gender and some on orientation. I felt these spells were something very unique that I had not seen in other books.

I have personally tried some of these spells and I am in love with them. I tried the Stuffed Animal Sleep Spell for my son. He loves his new stuffed animal and now will not sleep anywhere without it.

I have also been using the Restarting Spell at the end of each month. I feel this spell is a great way to end the month and get ready for the new one.

Rose Orriculum has such a way with words and spells. I enjoy her work and cannot wait to see what else she comes up with. To learn more about her, check out my interview with her in this issue!

Pastel Spells on Amazon

Book Review
The Witches’ Almanac
Issue 38
Spring 2019 to Spring 2020
Animals: Friends and Familiars

Brightest
Blessings

This
issue contains a wealth of knowledge. You want to take your time
reading this issue, snuggle next to the fire with a cup of tea or hot
cocoa. You can tell that each article or story they chose was thought
out. Some of the articles make you ponder your thoughts on subjects,
while others just entertain you, they are so adorable.

You
can learn a lot of lore, history and gain new insight on many topics.
Some of the articles are shortened for the book, but they include
links for further reading on those articles. The authors applied a
lot of time and research to create each of their contributions, it
inspired me to do further research on the various topics on my own.

The articles I found most interesting are…

Why
&
How Animal Omens Work
– This article gives ideas and signs on how animals work with spirit
and deities, share their knowledge and share insight when we are in
deep thought or need help during moments of our life.

The
Ja
de Emperor Race’s, How
the
Zodiac Signs Came to Be
– This story I found entertaining and adorable. I didn’t know
this story even existed. I think it is the perfect way to explain
them. The book gave information on this year’s Chinese zodiac sign
and a table listing this year’s preview and coming future date’s
of animal signs in following years.

NikolaTesla – Was a very interesting read, very well
thought out using his birth chart for astrology. This information I
found uniquely designed to add intrigue to the story.

Merry
Meeting of Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki – I loved this
article. Having her spend author interview time sharing her
experiences and her knowledge about the society of the inner light.
The article felt perfect just like you were in room with her. Even
though they shorten her interview for the book, they provide a link
to an audio file to further listen.

Corvids –
This article was about using knowledge of certain beautiful birds,
lore, and how to divine knowledge from birds of choice and messages
associated with certain deities.

There are many more
articles within this issue I found so inspiring I wish I could list
them all! This book contains information on zodiac influences for
coming spring 2019-2020, weather, mooncycles, explanations for
gardening by Moonphases, astrological key information, eclipses,
retrogrades for this spring 2019-2020, book reviews, and question
about the craft you can send in to be answered From a Witches
Mailbox!

In ending
this book is worth having in your collection of almanacs,
you can even order past issues to add to your collection. I was
honored to read this book.

The Witches’ Almanac, Issue 38, Spring 2019 to Spring 2020: Animals: Friends and Familiars on Amazon

***

About
the Author:

Norma Clark I’m Wiccan, My style follows my spiritual path, and what comes to mind.. I live in a small rural town, Paris, Idaho. I share my life With my Wiccan husband, 2 hyper Children, and gang of critters. I love to create new designs by looking at nature, cultural ideas for my Jewelry and create unique Metaphysical items. COME Sit For A  Spell or Two , And See the Magick of Forevrgoddessboutique

Book Review

The Transformative Witchcraft: The Greater Mysteries

by Jason Mankey

Repetition is a good thing, especially when the author infuses it with their own ideas and experiences. I believe that everything that we can do to make this information relatable to the broadest of audiences is a positive step towards bring greater awareness to the practice of Witchcraft and the work and dedication that is required to follow such a path. Such is the case in this new offering by author and editor of blog spot, Patheos Pagan, Jason Mankey- The Transformative Power of Witchcraft. Jason has authored several books on the craft, this one feeling more of a synthesis of the basics from start to finish.

The book is complete with history, ritual, creating sacred space, the work of self and more. There are three chapters devoted to the history of the craft and given that we are a spirituality based on the history, but crafted into a neopagan approach, having the solid foundation of what was, goes a long way into crafting what can be.

Chapters Four through Six focus on the “Cone of Power”, its creation, uses and theory behind its success. This information is presented in a thoughtful manner, offering options and adaptations, which I believe many newcomers to the path, are hesitant to interject on their own. Knowing how, when and where to direct energy is even more important now in the wake of global and domestic events and the working of witchcraft is a tool of change that, if wisely used can achieve amazing results.

I particularly enjoyed reading Chapters Seven through Ten, under Part Three’s Header of “Dedications, Initiations and Elevations”. For many, this topic alone is veiled in mystery and there are as many interpretations of what those semantics mean as paths of practice. Indeed, no one size fits all and as the author discusses, much depends on solitary, Tradition based, hereditary or other as to what these terms mean to the individual. Additionally, rituals are provided to be used as starting points or intact for the reader. I appreciate the detail that went into this section, particularly in preparing the seeker for the work required to be done, the preparation of self and the commitment that is undertaken when receiving any of these deeper connections to your path.

No book on witchcraft would be complete without attention to lunar working and Drawing Down the Moon as ritual and self-generator. Jason also covers the other types of Divine assumption, interaction and possession that may be encountered or experienced in the greater work. Chapter Thirteen provides all of the basics and information for the Ritual of Drawing Down the Moon.

The book concludes with discussion of The Great Rite and its ethical use in truth and physicality as well as metaphorical and representative approach. Each has its own specific reasons for selection, and in particular, when enacting The Great Rite as an offering of sex magick and potency, I believe it is important to know exactly why and where that option would be suitable and when it is used unethically as a means of control over the uninformed.

A glossary and bibliography is provided and the index makes it easy to zero in on specific topics.

This book is available for pre-order on Amazon with a publishing date of January 2019.

Transformative Witchcraft: The Greater Mysteries 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 Robin on Instagram & Facebook.

Comments are closed.

Trackback URI |